Starting a blog is a test of perseverance, a lot of research and a love of sharing ideas. But what tools and strategies exist to make the job easier?
It's also important to ask yourself: why do I blog? What is the business strategy? Am I looking to add value to the company website? Do I want to attract web searchers through keywords, or do I just want to use the blog as a medium to convey the company's personality? It's important to put together a game plan and stick to your strategy from day one, and of course, adapt when necessary.
So, how can you keep ideas in the pipeline and ensure that you publish consistently? In this post we'll share some blog productivity tools and strategies that we've used to build our blog over the past six months.
Keep your antennae up.
There may be conversations you've had this week that would make for great blog posts. It seems obvious, but we often neglect to ask ourselves: would this make an interesting blog article? This also relates to conversations that happen online, if you've got an opposing view, or if you can add to the conversation, leave a comment and link to your blog's response.
Use an RSS reader and browse for a half hour each morning.
Don't waste time sifting through bookmarks or manually typing URLs when a basic RSS reader can streamline all the information you need. For those of you who aren't familiar with RSS readers, they work like this: you add a feed by clicking an RSS button in your address bar; this gives you access to all of your favourite content with only the stripped down text, images and video. With RSS you can also be notified each time a new post goes up, by subscribing to RSS feeds you'll never miss a beat. If you have a Google account, I suggest Google Reader, and be sure to add http://www.webcanada.com/blog-rss/ to your list of sites!
Subscribe to Google Alerts.
Google Alerts are great for staying on top of relevant news. Depending on the popularity of the terms you subscribe to, you'll be sent an email each time that term appears on the web. It's a great way to stay on top of news. http://www.google.com/alerts
Update all your social media with one click.
We use HootSuite to send out blog updates across our Twitter and Facebook pages. It's got a handy URL shortener and is a convenient way to tell the world about your latest blog post. http://hootsuite.com/
Balance the load.
If you have more than one person who's able to blog, ask them! You'll get a more diverse set of opinions, expertise and writing styles; you'll also speak to the different segments of your audience with different voices. You're also likely to have more original ideas the more people you have contributing.
Variety is the spice of blogs.
Include pictures when you can, videos and slideshows are another great way to keep your readers engaged.
If we've left out anything else, feel free to share your own blog productivity tools and strategies with us! And if you're looking to create your own blog, WebCanada's Blog Module integrates seamlessly with Live CMS and offers all the functionality you've come to expect from the leading blog platforms.
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