A guest post by Tara Gentile of Scoutie Girl.
You’ve got a crafty business. You’ve got a blog because you’ve been told you should. But truth be told, for all the time spent blogging – or time you’ve thought about blogging – you’re not seeing much in the way of results.
This is when I get on the phone, in kind of an obnoxious you-don’t-want-me-to-say-it way, and ask, “What’s your end game?”
You see, just blogging for blogging’s sake is not good marketing. It’s not really that great for SEO. It’s not winning you loyal fans and it’s certainly not making you any money.
Blogging for blogging’s sake is what makes potential bloggers ask, “Why would anybody want to read what I have to say? Do I have anything to say?”
Successful blogging has an end game. A purpose. A method. A goal.
Sell more stuff.
And it’s okay – in fact, it’s great – if your end game for blogging is “I will sell more of my stuff.” But if that’s your end game, you have to blog with that goal in mind:
- You have to create an online space that naturally funnels visitors towards your shop.
- You have to talk about your work, how it benefits the customer, and why its unique.
- You have to create content that is both useful & exciting to your readers but in relation to your product.
It’s a tall order. But it’s a lot easier when you have your end game in mind.
Sign me up, Scotty.
Or you might have a more circuitous goal in mind. Perhaps your goal is to get people to sign-up for your awesome newsletter list that will keep them up to date on how to be more ecofriendly in their daily lives. And so you blog with that goal in mind:
- You give your newsletter opt-in the best space on your site.
- You regularly blog about how green issues affect your readership.
- You create a call to action on appropriate posts to ask readers to subscribe to your newsletter.
And, of course, you use the newsletter to promote your line of ecofriendly home goods.
Won’t you be my neighbor?
Or you might have a more personal blog. You blog about your family, your DIY projects, and your pets. But you have a business that you’d like to promote as well. And so you blog with that goal in mind:
- You create a sense of family on your blog.
- You speak in a conversational tone and use intimate details to make your readers feel like they belong.
- You talk about the work you create as a part of your family life and ask that readers make your work a part of their family life as well.
Your blog becomes a conduit for promoting your lifestyle and so readers want to own a piece of that lifestyle. It’s only natural – if you are blogging with that goal in mind.
Knowing what you want to accomplish makes all the difference.
If you feel lost with your blogging, if you feel like your blog isn’t getting any traction, my bet is that you’re not working towards your goal with every blog post.
You won’t state your objective in every post but your goal – your desire – should inform everything you write and every picture you choose to put on your blog. The subjects you blog about are as important as understanding the objective you’re trying to achieve. That objective will help you brainstorm ideas, make design decisions, and formulate calls to action.
Knowing your objective will also help you build a community around your blog, start conversation, and increase social sharing. There is nothing like being part of a larger mission to get someone to lend a hand. Your readers are people who want to be part of something bigger than themselves and your goal fits the bill. It doesn’t have to be extraordinary – it just has to be interesting and unique.
So, what’s your end game? What are you blogging for? Share your objective in the comments below.
Tara Gentile blogs to empower people to live more creatively and change the world with their money. Preorder Tara’s new ebook 52 MORE Weeks of Blogging Your Passion to help you engage your readers, build community, and convert readers into shoppers.