A blog is the way to go for getting your marketing message out there, but for it to stick, you must blog consistently.
Regular, consistent posts on your blog or social media pages, are necessary to keep readers interested and engaged. They also ensure that the search engines naturally push your content toward the top. Aim for twice per week at the beginning. This will solidify your status as an expert and get Google recognizing your keywords and content.
You may see this regular care and feeding of your blog as a necessary evil of you’re not into marketing or creating content. (I get it; you just want to do your work!) But the fact is, you can’t live in the past and hope to send a postcard to your neighbors every few weeks, or post a tweet once a day, and call it good.
Instead, people are looking for social proof, why they should do business with you, and what you’ve done for them (or someone like them) lately. Furthermore, you need to be in front of your online audience on a regular basis so they remember you amidst all the other marketing noise…
How do you stay consistent?
A few online tools keep my team and me on task. These tools are all free until you decide you need an upgrade, and I recommend them to help you stay on track. These are the ones I really couldn’t live without. If you’re getting started managing your content in house, check out these tools today:
…for regular story ideas and curation. Not sure if you remember Google Reader, but I’d been saving blog posts and online articles from newsites for years when Google stopped this service. Almost immediately, Feedly burst on the scene to replace it. And wow, what an improvement! Add the feeds you like to categories you define and you’ve got your content creation made in the shade. I check in daily and hit the categories I like to tweet about and share.
…is the next step for social sharing. This SaaS was made for social sharing of your content or others’ content. Add the Buffer extension to your browser of choice and simply click it every time you find an article you want to share. (You can even add stories to your Buffer right from within Feedly.) The idea behind Buffer is you set up your social profiles and the times you want to share content. Then, all you do is click your Buffer icon extension and add text to go with the link. You can use the title, which automatically populates, or you can delete that and add your own words. In the paid version of Buffer, you can even queue up your best-performing social shares (analytics provided) in a library for easy, one-click re-use.
…for free and paid content calendars. OK, these worksheets are sweet. CoSchedule is a SaaS we use here at Content Boomer and My Team Connects, and we’re big fans. They’ve created free content calendars to help you get some direction regarding your website posts. If you’re at a loss as to what to post; what subjects you need to cover for your ideal audience; and how to schedule your content throughout the coming months and year… these help you think it through. Download these helpful content calendars and get to work. (By the way, as an affiliate, I get a tiny compensation when someone purchases a paid calendar that links to your WordPress site, and enables you to share your blog content to your social sites. But you can use the downloadable calendars for free.)
… for organizing your thoughts and managing projects. Organizing your ideas, sources you need to cite, images you’d like to include in your next blog post, and random thoughts you may or may not use in the article you’re writing… can be a big, hairy deal! Trello helps you get all your ducks in a row by allowing you to create separate boards for each blog post on your content calendar. You can add cards (like notes) to each list you create. Here’s an example (below) of a typical board. This one is titled Content Boomer Posts and each list includes links to articles and ideas I want to explore. Some lists include book links, pictures, etc.
Trello is great because it has tons of features like folder colors, the ability to add team members to a list or a card within a list, and assign due dates to cards. You can organize your boards in any way you like. I’ve shown you how I use Trello to collect content ideas, but I also use Trello to manage projects. I can easily move tasks from one list to another (I particularly love to move cards to a “Completed” list) and even assign them to members of the team. You have to try Trello if you do not yet have a project management system in place. It’s a great option for basic project management — and it’s free.
How about you? What tools have you found that you couldn’t live without?
P.S. Some links in this article are referral links, and I may receive payment if you click on them. Just so you know!