I may blog professionally now, but there was a time when I truly sucked at it.
It wasn’t that I wasn’t a good writer. It’s just that I treated my blog like a hobby. It was more of a personal diary with no real aim apart from exploring my creativity and expressing my opinions.
Fast forward 5 years and it’s a different story. Now not only do I have a widely read sustainability blog but I (and the team) get paid to create blog content for ethical businesses too.
I’m not saying this to brag, I’m saying this to show you that it is possible to improve and have a blog that people read, comment on and share with their networks.
I’ve made all the blogging mistakes you can make, so I know what I’m talking about.
Here are the 5 likely reasons people aren’t reading your ethical blog:
You haven’t built trust.
One of the reasons why some business blogs are successful is that the brands have been able to establish trust with readers.
How do they do this?
Like any relationship, it begins with getting to know each other. The relationship grows more quickly if you are open and friendly so make sure your content is personable and uses conversational language.
A brand that brings this human element to the blog relationship with readers, connects with them on an emotional level. Humanising your ethical blog helps to engage your audience emotionally and is the best way to gain trust.
You can tell whether a brand has built trust with their community by the number of interactions and comments on the website. No matter what the niche, the top blogs – personal or business – can be spotted by the number of blog comments and engaged social media followers they have.
Your writing has multiple personalities.
If you are responsible for writing content on your blog or you’ve got a team of writers, you need to establish a style guide so that there is consistency in the blog “voice”.
Determine who your target audience is (often known in the business as “buying personas”) by considering key demographics, their interests, their problems, their concerns. Doing this exercise will help you to understand your audience and write for them using language that suits them. Tailoring your writing style to suit your audience will not only serve to engage them, but may keep them coming back for more.
Related post: 3 Easy Exercises to Help You Find Your Brand Voice
The only time it is ever okay to make every blog post about your brand, is if you don’t care about your audience. But if you’re reading this, chances are that you care if only because you want them buying your products or services.
This means that you need to write about the things your audience cares about. Your posts need to address their concerns and answer any questions they may have.
Using your blog as a way to have a conversation with your audience will help improve engagement and keep your brand top of mind.
You waffle on.
Most people are short on time. There isn’t a whole lot left over after they’ve attended to work, family, relationships, chores, study, sports and kids.
So you can appreciate that whatever time they do have left is extremely precious. Remember this when you write a blog post and when you find yourself waffling on, make sure to get to the point quickly. While it’s easy to hook people in with a catchy headline, they will immediately lose interest if they don’t get the information they’ve come to find.
You haven’t promoted it to your network.
Some brands arrogantly assume that just because they’ve written what they think is a Pulitzer prize winning piece that everyone will just find it and read it. These brands are sadly mistaken.
Once you’ve written your blog post, you need to bring it to the attention of your community and potential customers. So make sure to announce it on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms you are involved in. Also include links to new posts in your email newsletter to subscribers.
Related post: 3 Reasons to Get Your Sustainable Business on Twitter
And if your blog post mentions influential people, bloggers, or other brands, let them know about your post with an email. They shouldn’t need to find out by doing a Google search on themselves!
Writing is time-consuming and it can be demoralising if no-one is reading your stuff. Implementing these tips will help to increase your readership. So what 2 or 3 things can you implement this week to help improve your blog’s readership?
Latest posts by Jennifer Nini (see all)
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- The Ultimate Blogging Guide for New Ethical Bloggers & Brands - May 4, 2016