by Jeanine Vecchiarelli
In social media marketing, everyone knows that the blog is the life blood of an online presence. Without an intelligently written, interactive blog site, would-be internet marketers are merely floating along in a chasm of vast, unresponsive cyberspace. How else do you get your message out there in a way that connects with potential clients? How do you build the trust factor and earn credibility?
Of equal importance to the blog itself is the manner in which it is composed. With few exceptions, we fool ourselves if we believe we can sit down and bang out a quality piece in the blink of an eye. We need to acknowledge that proper construction takes lots of time and repeated self-editing. Here are six tips to help get us pointed in the right direction:
- Get a feel for the right length as you organize your thoughts into a usable sequence. You are not going to attract hordes of readers if your posts are long-winded and rambling.
- Show your human side. No one likes to read a detached, uninspiring passage. Potential clients have no idea who is behind the keyboard at the other end of their internet connection. Being able to inject some personality and humanity into your writing will put your blog readers into a comfort zone. And the more comfortable they feel, the more their trust in you and your brand is likely to build.
- Make sure you deliver quality content. The best method for building trust and respect is sharing value from within your field. Educate your readers; impart helpful tips and share instructional information that they can take away from your posts. The more value you deliver, the more trust and confidence you instill. The more trust and confidence you instill, the more repeat and referring readers you will create!
- Include pictures, and be sure to use alternate text and to caption those pictures with optimized text. Not only are photos attractive to a reader’s eye, they help break up the monotony of reading an ongoing stream of words. As an added bonus, in this age of Pinterest, you can spread your blog more widely by pinning its related pictures to your boards on that platform!
- Post short videos. The best way for blog site visitors to get to know you is to have them see and hear a message directly from you. While video blogging, or vlogging, has been popular in the past, this year it is ESPECIALLY so! Videos don’t have to be masterpieces of production. In fact, the more informal ones tend to do best among viewers these days. There’s nothing wrong, and perhaps everything right, with recording yourself sitting across the table from your camera, having a brief, intimate chat with your audience.
- Watch spelling and grammar! This is BIG. There is probably no faster way to rob yourself of respectful consideration than by having potential clients read a professional blog that is full of misspellings and grammatical inconsistencies. Take the time to get it right! Have a dictionary and thesaurus (or the URL links to them) handy while you write. Keep your wording interesting by making use of synonyms instead of repeating the same terms ad nauseum. Make sure subjects and verbs agree in tense as well as in singularity/plurality. Lastly, read and then reread your post before publishing it. Take the extra few minutes to make sure your presentation is completely professional. You won’t regret it if you do; you just may if you don’t!
Like it or not, the blog is THE way we communicate across the worldwide web. Whether we are announcing business promotions, sharing helpful pointers, making new connections or teaching lessons, the blog is the vehicle by which we get it done. Learning to appreciate the form and giving it the creative respect it requires will go a long way toward achieving success in our online connections and transactions.
Have you any additional tips to offer? I’d love to hear them! Please share your ideas in the comments section below!