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How to hustle your plan by blogging
Top Tip: "Once you've written a blog post make sure you spread the word!"
Help Card By: Matthew Gain
Blogging OK, so the hype around blogging has moved on a little as the likes of Twitter, Foursquare and Facebook have captured the public’s attention, but as a means of getting your Plan in front of people’s eyes it is still highly valuable. Here are some tips on how to get blogging and, more importantly, getting an audience:
- Get started. If you don’t have a blog already, check out this great post on selecting a blog by Darren Rowse, in my opinion the world’s most authoritative expert on the art of blogging. His blog is an excellent resource for all things blogging.
- Name your blog. The name of your blog is important. It is typically the first thing someone will notice when they arrive at your blog. Potentially more important though is that Google pays a lot of attention to a blog name. So consider the name of your blog in the same way you would the title of a book if you were an author. Choose something that clearly communicates you Plan, immediately engages the reader and makes them want to read more. Again, Darren Rowse has some great suggestions on choosing a blog name, which you can check out, but the most important thing is making sure it aligns clearly with your Big Plan and its goals.
- About me. One of the first things I do when landing on a blog for the first time is click the about tab. Make sure the content on your about page is updated, clearly introduces your Plan and links back to your PlanBig profile. It’s also a good idea to include a few pics.
- Content. Keep it short! There is a hell of a lot of internet out there to read. Don’t assume your readers are going to hang around to read long essay style posts about the updates with your Plan. Keep it short and punchy. This will help keep your readers engaged, but will also mean it is easier to keep your blog updated.
- Multimedia. There are few things that are less engaging than a long page of text. Break up text posts with images or even video that brings the story of your Plan to life.
- SEO (search engine optimisation). The world of optimising content for Google is very complex and in some ways a dark art. For beginners though some easy ways to get started is making sure you enter keywords that relate to your Plan in the tags section when making a new post, that you link your blog to your social profiles and also to your PlanBig page and that you keep your blog updated with regular new content. The more you blog the more SEO will start to make sense, but this simple presentation from The Sassy SEO Kristin Rohan is a good introduction to SEO.
- Distribution. Don’t expect people to just stumble across your content. When you have made your latest update, put a link on your Facebook profile, send a link out via Twitter, send the link via email to your friends and last but not least update your PlanBig plan so your plan watchers know there is an update.
- RSS. For those uninitiated with RSS, it is basically a subscription service that allows people to stay up to date with the content on your blog, thus avoiding the need for them to continually check back for new content. All blogging services offer this, so make sure you encourage people to subscribe to your RSS. Why not include a line at the end of every post inviting people to subscribe to your RSS?
- Engage. Like all social media blogging is about engaging in a conversation with your audience. Like I have advised in the past, encourage conversation by asking for comments, advice, tips or feedback on your plan and the posts you are making.
There are so many other bits of advice, but the biggest advice I can advise is simply to jump in and give it a go. Blogging is a little bit like riding a bike – you will only understand it and get better when you start trying it for yourself. So what are you waiting for? Set up a blog and get updating about your Plan. Oh and don’t forget to involve your audience.