Blogs dominate as one of the top online marketing tools today; the sheer number of blogs may be why we see so many blogging mistakes again and again and again…and why so many managers and marketers miss out on the opportunities they set up the blog for in the first place.
To be sure, blogging is a detail-oriented effort. Writing a blog post and missing one (or several) of those details is a blogging mistake that, willingly or unwillingly, sabotages your blogging results.
Not knowing who you’re writing for
If you don’t know who you’re writing to, you’re doing yourself a disservice before you even start writing. And when we say writing “to,” we don’t just mean search engines (though you should also be concerned about optimizing your blog posts-we wrote about how here), but the people you want reading your posts and buying your products. Your audience is going to respond to content relevant to their life, and you’re not going to use the tone or hit on those relevant topics if you don’t know who they are, the tone they use, and what they care about.
Not writing as part of a plan
Do you have a distribution plan for your blog posts? And a strategy behind your posts and marketing efforts? Know what you want to achieve before you start, and set up a plan with blog posts and promotions that helps you achieve those goals (i.e. establish brand authority, increase website traffic, grow email list, etc.) This gives you not only a set plan, but also a purpose behind every blog post (which you can use to craft a clear call to action in your post).
Do you want people to click on your post? Put some thought into your headlines. A good headline draws a reader into the post and is TRUTHFUL. Avoid click bait headlines; you may see an increase in traffic, but you’ll also see an increase in your bounce rate. All great headlines have a commonality: they speak to your audience. Common examples of good headlines include questions (How can I fix this?), lists (5 Ways to fix your problem), or strong words (5 Horrible Mistakes You’re Making Fixing Your Problem).
Using low-quality images
You have just a few seconds to get your audience’s attention, and a low quality image is going to leave your audience clicking their internet browser’s back button in droves. Invest in high quality images that are relevant to your blog posts, or hire a content marketing firm that can deliver high quality blog posts and images. Whatever you decide to do, PLEASE (PLEASE!) do NOT steal images from other internet sites. Just because an image is on the internet does not mean you can take it and use it for your own.
Forgetting your call to action
Your audience shouldn’t have a doubt about what you want them to do by the end of your blog post. Include a clear call to action in your content or video. Your call to action doesn’t always have to be a hard sell, but you do need to include a call to action in line (i.e. for more information, to find out more, to find out your options for…, etc.) with the goal of your article and your blog.
Too much selling
We can hear you, “but that’s why I write blog posts! That’s why I invest my time and money.” Today’s customers don’t want to be barraged by advertisements and sales pitches. Your job is to be helpful and offer your customers resources so they can find what they need. Don’t get us wrong; that doesn’t mean you can’t create an online marketing plan with promotional posts (i.e. social media, mailers, emails, etc.). Use the 80/20 guide. Try to schedule 20% promotional and 80% helpful and entertaining posts that bring value to your customers.
Not keeping up with blog posts
Content marketing is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. You don’t have to be a runner to know that means that regular posts are the key to content marketing success. If you can’t keep up with writing quality blog posts, hire experts that can not only write the blog posts but can also manage all the details.