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15 Things You Should Know Before Launching Your Blog

Joe Wozny, who is the CEO of Concentric, has written a new book called The Digital Dollar. I’ve take a spin through the book and can confirm it’s packed with great tips and advice on how to use online marketing to grow your sales and revenues.

One of the topics Joe covers is how to use a blog to attract customers to your website. What follows are 15 tips Joe shares that anybody starting a blog should take into consideration:

  • Before starting a blog, ensure the blogger is aware of the time commitment involved.  Blogging requires engagement and frequent updates to a) ensure content online is not stale, and b) engage in relationships created through blogging.  Engagement means actively participating on other blogs, not just your own.  It also means replying back to emails and comments.  A rule of thumb is to update or reply to blog comments a minimum of three times per week.
  • Blog followers often like to hear from senior executive leaders, interesting personalities and the person they believe is “behind the brand,” since this is perceived as putting a human face on an organization.  It’s important to be careful selecting who blogs on behalf of your business or organization.  The blog owner becomes a large component of the brand.
  • Promote open, honest and authentic communications in a blog.  Transparency is important.  Blog postings, though they do not give away trade secrets, do require a certain amount of candor.
  • Blog posts should contain a degree of passion for the topic at hand.  If energy and enthusiasm are lacking in the creator or creation of the blog, others cannot be expected to get involved or participate.
  • The blog writer does not always have to be the blog author; some bloggers use third parties to write for them.  However, the author whose name appears in a blog must ensure that posts express their individual voice and perspective.
  • Ensure that you are clear on what the blog stands for in terms of purpose and intent.
  • If followers question your blog’s content, be prepared to stand up for it.
  • Do not write a post or reply to any blog comments when you are not in a calm state.  By all means, engage in conversation – even when blog comments get nasty – but do so without being offensive.
  • Encourage visitors to post comments and join the conversation.  Visitors to business blogs interpret replies to their comments as acknowledgement that they are being heard.
  • Be prepared to filter out spam in the comments section of any blog.  Consider using an automated spam reduction filter to help with this important task.
  • Add your blogging time commitment as well as content development to your digital dollar budgets, marketing and content plans.
  • Before beginning your own blog, review and engage with a few blogs that appeal to you.  Use this activity to create a target list of blogs you will participate in once your own blog is established.  This will help establish a personal set of operating and marketing guidelines for your blogging activities.
  • Blog tools such as outbrain.com’s plug-in for blogs is a good way to add more value for your readers, have your blog circulated to more readers, and learn about your audience through the review dashboard.
  • Blog writers interested in understanding rising topics or trends should review sites such as topsy.com, postpost.com, tweetmeme.com, 48ers.com, and summify.com in order to keep an ear to the ground and ensure that the topics they write on do not get boring.
  • If you are asked the same question twice, consider whether the subject matter and your answer are worthy of a blog.

Joe Wozny, author of The Digital Dollar: Sustainable Strategies for Online Success, is a digital and online media thought leader, strategist, author, blogger and international presenter on strategies to improve the reach and success of Internet, social and digital media initiatives. Through his company, Concentric, he helps leaders leverage their businesses using smart, well planned digital strategies.

The links to Joe’s book are affiliate links.