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Am I maximizing the potential of this post? Ever since I committed to blogging less, I ask myself this question with each post. The goal of blogging less is to reach larger audiences with meaningful, high-quality blog post rather than lower-quality but for frequent blog posts. Do more with less. How I maximize each post is dependent on the post itself.
Frequency, Purpose, + Intention
For growing your blog, I have three rules that I follow – frequency, purpose, and intention. These three rules help me grow my blog but also meet the needs and desires of my existing readers.
Frequency: I have committed myself to post one post a week, on Monday. If I have more time in the week, I will include another post or two. However, I don’t add the extra posts to my queue unless I’m four weeks ahead. With the move, this schedule has been incredibly helpful for me. No last minute stress, and I’m ensuring an active presence online even though I’ve got a full plate!
Purpose: At the beginning of my Brand Audit, I created three long-term goals. For the blog, the main objective is to be a resource for other bloggers and potential clients/customers. Each blog post must be related to the following topics – Blogging, WordPress, and Freelancing. I have a few sub-categories within those topics, such as SEO, Photography, and Social Media. All posts stay on target and aim to help creative entrepreneurs and bloggers create better brands!
Intention: Why am I writing this post? With each post idea, I ask this before I begin. Since my purpose is to help others create better brands, I challenge myself with a tougher question – how does this post help a potential reader create a better brand? If I cannot give a firm and thorough answer, the blog topic is not ideal for my brand right now.
Link to Past Content
Even though I’ve been following my blog since the beginning, most readers have not (obviously from my Brand Reports). Even though my posts follow a structure, linking to past content is helpful for new readers to see relevant content. It also helps your existing readers see how all of your posts connect. When you like to past content, you provide an opportunity for readers to dive into your content.
Use Images, Videos, and Screenshots to Illustrate Points
Most people respond to visuals over the written word; hence, why Instagram is so much more popular than Twitter. Using images, videos, and screenshots to illustrate points and demonstrate key elements of your content is extremely helpful to keeping readers on your page. Plus, you can also use those graphics on social media to promote your content.
Also, be easy on yourself, you might not be able to do it all. Personally, I have not had the time to really invest in doing video like I want to, so I haven’t. That’s okay. Remember, you don’t have to do it all at once, do what works for you.
Use FAQs to Attract Potential Readers + Customers
Similar to adding graphics to your post, adding FAQs and concrete stats help emphasize the significance of your message, and they also help promote your content online in social media. A catchy metric, stat, or quote is an excellent way to attract readers to your site. For example, one of my most favorite blog posts is Why You Should Start an Email Newsletter. The post features three important stats on the importance of email marketing. Explaining how to set up a newsletter is only as compelling to my readers if they understand why it is important!
Add a Content Upgrade
Content Upgrades are additional materials/resources that readers can access at the end of your post; they are useful if your post is more informative/educational. My Resources Library is filled with these content upgrades that users can download at any time. I have found that I might create a post for one particular content upgrade, but I am able to use that content upgrade with additional posts or combine them.
These content upgrades add value to your blog post for readers, but they can also help you grow your email list. Some people opt to use these as a lead-magnet. I have chosen to use Easy Digital Downloads to manage them. I recognize that not everyone wants to subscribe to my email list. I have an opt-in box when people click to download these, and they can subscribe. I also didn’t want to manage a password protected library. People can unsubscribe to my newsletter and still get access. Instead, I just put it all out there.
Struggling to think of relevant content upgrades, here are some of my favorites:
- Worksheets + guides that apply the content of the blog post to real life (such as Building a Better Portfolio and Branding Questionnaire)
- Printable checklists with steps of the tutorial (such as Writing a Blog Post Checklist and How to Start a WordPress Blog)
- Video tutorial or Webinar Invitation of the blog post (go more indepth)
- Discount code or promo offering with a brand (for lifestyle publishers)
Connect to Relevant Blog Post on Social Media
Let’s say you have one post go live this week. However, you’ve written several different posts in the past that align with that blog content. Similar to linking to relevant content within the blog post, share relevant content on social media. Your post does not seem random, and you are providing context and additional resources to your potential readers.
I have an editorial calendar of new blog posts, but I also have an editorial schedule of old blog posts. I try to ensure that I like to different blog posts, projects, and resources each week, but that these archives align with the new blog post.
Look at your editorial calendar for next week. Does your blog post meet these qualifications? If not, go through each post (one at a time) and add these tools and resources. You might also want to check out my Writing WordPress Blog Post Checklist as well as some of the other content planning tools; this comprehensive guide will ensure that you have everything completed on the back-end. As with anything, always ask yourself, what makes a good blog post to you? Those characteristics are things you want to embody in your own blog post.