Blogs have become like satellite TV channels, there are far too many, and most of them are a waste of your time. How do people find the good ones? Blog surfing.
Once a blog surfer finds a blog to ride they subscribe through an RSS feed. With more than 151 million searches a month on “what/how to blog”, you aren’t alone in wondering what to write. A question you’ve probably asked yourself a hundred times is, “How do I know what people want to read?” The answer lies in something that happened to me a few months ago.
It was Friday night and I found a VHS recording of my high school choir’s Christmas concert. I was thrilled, even though I had to fix the VCR first since I hadn’t used it in nearly a decade. I couldn’t help but sing along. However, my wife had a different perspective. With the end of each song she was ready to hit the power button. I was astounded that she didn’t think it was worth her time. After all, it was about me.
I was blind to what we were really watching because of my personal investment in the video.
This, my friends, is one of the biggest problems in blogging today. Not only in blogging, but in every business decision we make. Business executives and entry-level employees rarely stop to analyze their business, website, blogs or products from the perspective of a customer. We cannot disassociate ourselves from our personal investment in our business enough to see our business clearly.
We must disconnect ourselves from the process and honestly answer this question, “Do I analyze my business, website, blog or products with the same scrutiny as I do when I am the customer?”
When you are a customer, do you want a website to be easy to navigate, a blog to catch your interest immediately and products to be of exceptional quality? If you want this from others, recognize that your customers are just as demanding.
If you feel your business needs improvement in one of these areas but aren’t sure where to begin, my suggestion would be, start with your blog. It is the one element of your business that can change the quickest. A blog is a form of content marketing. Because blog readers are looking for different things from a blog than from a products page, here are a few things to keep in mind when writing your blog:
- Choose topics you know something about
- Be engaging with the world and your customers
- Have a message that sticks
- Use some humor
- Keep it short
- Make it easy to subscribe
- Write so a blog surfer will stop
- Most importantly, if you don’t want to read it, neither will others
Let my lesson learned be your lesson learned also. Don’t put in an old VHS that will have your customers powering down their computers. Give them a blog they can’t resist riding.