Did you know: marketing pros who write a blog are 13x more likely to enjoy positive ROI.
Yet, when you think about writing your next blog, does writers’ block hold you in its icy grip?
Are you frozen at your keyboard wondering why people blog?
Let’s explore some of the advantages and strategies to ensure your writing time is rewarding.
- If you’d love to be found more easily and raise your SEO, blogging is essential. Research has shown that websites with an active blog rank more highly in searches. This is because the more often you make changes to your website, the more new content is crawled by search engines, thus raising your ‘findability’. Two more SEO friendly blog tips.
- When you showcase your expertise and knowledge, you will develop relationships with your readers. You’ll help them understand more about travel and tourism, as well as about your own professional style and voice. Credibility coupled with a personal relationship make for strong loyalty.
- Out There. The more you blog, the more you increase your findability, and the more likely it is that the media will find you. Content is King! Newspapers, magazines, and on-line publications are continually looking for experts to quote. Your active blog is exactly what they look for! What could be better than being quoted or sourced as an expert?
What Do I Write About?
If you start to draw a blank just thinking about writing, here are 3 simple tactics you can use immediately that will have you writing in no time. Most of these ideas are right at your fingertips.
How about trying this today:
1. We all attend so many webinars these days. How about writing about something new you learned on the last webinar you joined? Maybe that webinar included information on new hotels and restaurants in your top selling destination. 24 more ideas here.
Try this: Review the hotels mentioned in the webinar and provide your own insights as related to your clientele.
2. Client Questions. I’ll bet you hear dozens of great questions from your clients every day. How about making a list of those questions and writing a blog about each one. What a great way to provide answers and gain an opportunity to highlight your professionalism.
Try this: This week keep a list of all the questions you hear from your clients. Sift through them and pinpoint similar questions that can be grouped together in your next blog post.
3. Top Tips. As travel and tourism professionals we all have top tips we mention to clients and live by. Here’s your chance to put these into writing and reap the reward of providing a service to your clients and helping the media find great content. 22 other things to write about.
Try this: Listen to yourself as you provide advice to your clients. What tips do you offer every day? What tips do your BDM’s mention in webinars and sales calls? What feedback do you get from your own clients? Turn each of these tips into a blog post.
4. Hate to write? Try these 5 tips
How to Add Pizzazz to Your Blog
Do you want to take your blog to the next level? Keeping your blog readable and easy to digest is crucial to holding the interest of your readers. If the theory holds that attention spans are slipping, captivating your readers will boost the time they spend with you.
Pump-up your pizzazz quotient by:
- Adding photos
- Including captions with photos
- Embedding video
- Creating infographics
- Using sub-headings extremely well.
- Bonus tip: when uploading your blog remember that Headings (H1, H2, H3) are searched by those web crawling spiders.
- Adding white space to make it easier to read.
- Bonus tip: keeping your paragraphs short will allow readers to digest the material more easily.
- Include color. Test out how different font colors showcase your brand image
Tips to Market Your Blog
Whew! Now that your latest creation is written, edited, ‘pizzazz-ed’, and published, you get to have some real fun. Increase your readership and elevate your searchability by posting your blog socially and spreading the word. The secret to marketing your blog is to leverage every outlet you can.
Market your blog here:
1. Post your blog to each of your social sites. Create a post on Facebook, a tweet, a Google+ post, etc.
2. Dive deeper with tools unique to each platform
LinkedIn Pulse. Pulse is a blog-like feature available on LinkedIn. You’ll find it hidden under the “Interests” tab. Simply copy/paste your blog post into the Pulse dashboard, add your photos or videos, and publish. You’ll find you get great readership when you use Pulse. Note: The header image size is 700×400 pixels.
Facebook Note. Note is a feature available on business pages. You’ll find it hidden under the ‘More’ tab. The dashboard looks similar to Pulse and copy/paste works great. Note: Be sure to upload an image that’s sized to 1200×445 pixels. Here’s a how-to guide for you.
3. Pinterest is an untapped arena for your blog posts. Create a cool, long pin with your blog title and then upload your blog as a pin. Consider starting a new board just for your blog posts. Or strategically place your blogs onto related boards. For example, if you’re writing about a specific destination, add your blog to a board you’ve created about that destination.
4. Podcasting is an under-utilized medium that’s perfect for your blog content. Just think about the long, boring daily commute many of your clients endure. Imagine their delight when they listen to the audio recording of your most recent blog post. You’ll be joining them in their car and inviting them to daydream about a destination, resort, or ship. Your phone will be ringing with new bookings.
5. Video is HOT! Consider creating a short video (under 1 minute) of the key points of your latest blog post. Post your video socially and then provide a link to the blog so they can read the rest of the story.
6. Blog Round-up Newsletter. Conquer reader fatigue by including a short introduction to a couple of blog posts in your next e-newsletter. Then provide links to the rest of the blog post. This way your newsletter readers can scan the newsletter, hone in on the blog topics that interest them, and click to see the rest of the article. You minimize the space in your newsletter and let readers choose the content that’s most interesting.
Bonus tip: Study your e-blast analytics to better understand which links get the most clicks.
You’ll realize the biggest benefits to blogging as your library of posts grow and your readers begin to share your content. This is when the magic starts to happen. Your blog works for you day and night, weekends and holidays, even while you’re on vacation.
Break free of your writers’ block and start getting creative today.
Catherine Heeg, international speaker and trainer, focuses on social media marketing & communication for the travel and tourism industry. Join the conversation and connect with her at www.cmsspeaking.com and socially.
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