How has your blog been working for you this year? Is it bringing you new clients, more recognition for your expertise, or increasing your bottom line? If not, now may be a great time to review your blog and see how you can tune it up.
Blogging should be an integral part of your marketing plan so that you have a showcase to demonstrate your expertise to your target market. Creating actionable content useful to your target market is a great way for you to initiate the like, know, and trust factor with potential clients.
Here’s my 10-step method for doing a year-end blog review:
1. Design and branding. Who is your target market? Does your blog look and feel and header speak directly to that audience? Do they immediately think that they have landed on the perfect site to help them find solutions to their problems?
2. Easy navigation. Can visitors easily search your blog? How about find content by category or by posting date? Can they find related posts to each article to encourage them to dig deeper on your blog? What if they want to contact you — do you have a “Contact Us” page with several contact methods? Is there an “About Us?” page on your site and other static pages that explain what you do, what you offer, and how you offer it? Are you regularly checking for broken or outdated links?
3. Multiple subscription options. Is it easy to subscribe to your blog either by RSS or email? Are these subscription options readily available on your site?
4. Relevant resources. Beyond your own products and services, does your blog list relevant resources for your target market?
5. Regular posts. Are you posting regularly to your blog? You need to be posting to your blog at least once a week, but 2-3 times per week is more effective. Do you have a variety of posts — informational articles, useful resources, polls or surveys, videos and audios? Mix it up a bit for your target market.
6. Social media connections. Is your blog connected to all of the social networks in which you participate?
7. Engagement with readers. Do readers regularly comment on your posts? Do they “like” them on Facebook or retweet them on Twitter? Is it easy to comment on your posts? Do you regularly respond to the comments you receive?
8. Optimizing posts for SEO. Are your posts showing up in the search engines? Do you focus on optimizing each post for one keyword? Are you using graphics to help in your SEO efforts? Here’s a link to a related article with more details.
9. Call to action. Does each of your post have its own call to action? In order to best use your blog to market your business, each post should have a unique call to action, whether that’s to remind visitors of a program, product, or service, or to get something free that you’re giving away.
10. Analytics. Do you know how many unique visitors you have or what pages they visit? How long do they stay on your blog? How do they travel around your blog?
Take some time to conduct your year-end blog review to make your blog a stronger marketing tool for your business.