Over the weekend, my sister, a writer, called me a “blogging machine”, recognising the challenge of producing 3 or 4 worthwhile posts a week. Caught me a bit by surprise, because I just blog, write about what seems important to me, and that I think will be of interest to those that do pay me the huge compliment of following and commenting.
However, her comment got me thinking, and I recall the mindset when I wrote the first post, back in March 2009, as reflected in the 1,000th post in August 2013. While I wondered how this would evolve, I tackled in that first stumbling post a thread that has been consistent throughout, the nature of one of the major challenges facing SME’s, as they set out to compete in an increasingly complicated world.
My sisters comment also follows a casual conversation at a recent SME networking meeting, where I had previously advised the bloke to whom I was speaking to add a blog to his website as a part of a strategy to establish his credibility amongst those who had found their way to the site. He was doubting the value of the advice, lamenting that there had been no result from the major effort he had made to blog.
More from curiosity that anything else, I checked his site and realised why there has been no impact, no business flowing .
3 posts only.
Pretty good posts, well thought out and presented well, but three? What did he really expect?
Reflecting on my experience with this arm of social marketing, here are the things my networking friend has to address, and the simple guidelines you should all at least acknowledge:
- Be prepared for the long haul, there is unlikely to be any impact quickly. I am reminded of a conversation I had years ago as I paid my way through university by slaving on building sites. An old brickie, someone who these days would probably be a professor of philosophy, described the difference between builders for whom he subcontracted, as “some can just see plan, and with luck follow it, the good ones understand the plan, and can clearly imagine the completed building”.
- Have a “tone” that is consistent, and reflects the person you are. Being yourself makes it much easier to be consistent at least.
- Have a clear purpose for the blog. This pretty much follows for any commercial activity, but is really important here. If you cannot meet the discipline of twitter, 140 characters, you need to do more on distilling your purpose.
- Knowledge is attractive. The more you know about a topic, the better you will be able to write about it, and be relevant, entertaining, and add some value to readers. Fail here, and your bounce rate will be high.
- Follow your passion. Passion is to my mind the real competitive discriminator in this world of commodities, but is widely misused to the point of becoming a cliche. However, life without passion is pretty boring, and the last thing you want your blog to be is boring.
Call me if I can help get the ducks in line.