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Claire Bradford: Top tips for blogging

AFTER extolling the virtues of blogging for business in a recent column, here are some hints and tips for starting a blog for your business.

If you’re absolutely starting from scratch, consult your site’s developer and ask about embedding your blog on your website.

If this is not possible or desirable, I recommend setting up a blog on WordPress, as it is simple and very flexible.

Be clear in your mind who your reader will be (think about a favourite client, for example) and plan posts for them.

This will feel much less intimidating as you won’t be trying to address an imagined large, faceless crowd. Create a mind map of ideas you could use for your blog – read about mind mapping at www.straightforwardcoaching.com/2013/11/mind-mapping

You will want to showcase your expertise, but also you need to be personable and readable, so it’s a good idea to have a variety of different posts planned.

For example, when I worked with Worthing Churches Homeless Projects on ideas for a blog, some of the suggestions included factual posts on where contributors’ money goes, light-hearted anecdotes about things that happen in the centres or in the office, client success stories, posts from volunteers, and posts about some of the wider issues of homelessness. Include all of your ideas on a big mind map, then you will not be scratching your head for inspiration each week.

While you’re in mind mapping mode, it’s a good idea to make a map for each post you write.

This might help to prevent you from trying to cover too much in each post. If you find that you have a lot to say about a subject, chop it up into several posts, keeping each one ‘bite sized’.

People’s attention span is famously tiny on the internet, and you don’t want all your well-crafted words going to waste.

Be clear on your goals for your blog, whether it’s a number of subscribers, greater awareness of your brand, or creating ‘viral’ content. Plan how you will measure that.

Create a blogging strategy including how often you will post, how you will spread the word (social media is perfect), and curating a range of posts over time.

Good luck! Do share your thoughts, plans and blogs at www.facebook.com/womaninbusiness or tweet me @coachbythecoast

 

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