Tell me if this sounds familiar: you had a great idea for a blog. You believed that if you produced incredible content, potential customers would come. They would read the blog, subscribe, and as long as your kept writing amazing content, your blog would thrive. I am guessing that if you are reading this, your experience was more similar to the majority of beginner business bloggers and it looked nothing like that. Instead, it probably looked more like this: you had this great idea for a blog, you wrote some great content, no one came and now you want to know why.
The answer is simple – no one came because you built a blog but you didn’t build an audience.
You see, in the blogosphere, great content only gets you so far. Building a thriving blog for your brand is about more than just writing. Unfortunately, there is no magic bullet that takes you from 1 to 100,000 subscribers overnight. However, in this blog post I provide you with some real insights you can take to start building a loyal audience.
Think about these problems if you don’t know your niche:
Hopefully those three questions hit this point home. The most important thing you need to do in order to attract a better audience for your blog is to know who is in that audience and what they care about so that you can provide the content and experience that attract them, engage them, and keep them coming back.
You can find a ton of information online about how to find your ideal audience and niche, and here are two of my favorites (in order):
Once you know who the people in your niche are, you need to ask yourself some questions about your niche:
Answering these questions for the different types of people who make up your niche t is invaluable to create content that resonates with them and that keeps them coming back.
The best blogs don’t happen by accident; they come from a combination of good planning, great content, and a consistent approach. One of the other major mistakes bloggers make is not thinking through and planning out their approach. I recommend creating an editorial calendar. Your editorial calendar should include items such as:
– Who is the ideal reader for the blog?
– How many posts you want to publish per week?
– What kind of on-going features or columns you want to include?
– How you do you tie your blog to other marketing or branding initiatives?
For example, some bloggers pick a theme for each month or produce a couple posts a week featuring news pertinent to their theme for that month. This kind of planning ahead creates the foundation you need to support a consistent posting strategy and overall management of your blog.
Think of each blog post as the opening sentence of a conversation. If you publish the post and then back away, your audience won’t feel engaged and they won’t stay. Keep the conversations going by reading and responding to every comment posted on your blog. Join the conversations happening on other relevant blogs to show potential readers that you have important things to say. Engaging your audience this way provides you with two enormous benefits. First, you begin to create a community and there is nothing that inspires loyalty more quickly than feeling like you belong. Second, if you pay attention to the comments and feedback, your readers will tell you what they like, don’t like, and what they want to hear more about which can be very powerful if you capture it and feed it back into your blog as future content.
One of the biggest mistakes bloggers make is failing to understand what it takes to create, build, and manage a successful blog with a substantial audience. For some reason, people think internet marketing is easy, but it isn’t. It takes effort, discipline, and a constant vigilance to create quality content and stay on top of the latest information. If you think attracting an audience to you business blog is easy, then your first task is to adjust your expectations. Blogging is about more than just writing. Creating great content is not enough to succeed. Bustling blogs are not built overnight. It takes hard work, dedication, and a consistent approach to be successful.
Again, this might sound like it is all about the writing but making a quality product goes far beyond that. People follow blogs because the content resonates with them AND because they see it as a trusted source of information. If your content is full of bad grammar and simple spelling errors, people only keep reading long enough to get your point. There are a million other blogs for them to choose from. Create headlines that grab people’s attention because this is the hook that brings new readers to your blog and convinces current subscribers to read more. Make sure your posts are visually interesting and easily to digest. This means using quality photos, short paragraphs, bulleted lists, and bolded text that make reading your blog easy regardless of which device the reader is using.
Nerd Tip: We use Canva to create our opening graphics. It is free and easy.
Now that you have something worth talking about, it is time to spread the word. Let people know what you are blogging about by posting links and teasers on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, etc. Make it incredibly easy for people to share your content from your blog or across their social media experience. Invite guest bloggers to provide posts for your blog to entice their readers to subscribe. Make sure potential readers can find you by optimizing your blog for search, practicing excellent SEO, and researching the right keywords for every post. Make sure every contact you have includes a link back to your blog. This means including it as part of your email signature, putting it on your business card, and promoting it in any marketing or advertising initiatives. Your blog is your rock.
Make sure that you are not wasting effort. If your audience is not on a social platform, do not waste your time on it.
Adam Lundquist, is a Harvard-educated agency owner and former radio shock jock from Santa Barbara radio. When Adam published one of his interviews on a newly-formed platform called YouTube, it became one of the first viral videos, sparking his initial interest in the power of the internet, as well as internet marketing. Adam has been featured on traditional media like MTV, VH1, and the Best Damn Sports Show. He’s taken his knowledge of traditional media translated it successfully into new media as a featured author in Search Engine Journal, PPC Hero, and WordStream, amongst others.
We utilize an advanced ROI driven marketing methodology developed at Harvard and put it to work for you to generate more customers on a consistent basis in a cost effective way.