It’s a new year and with the new year always comes the momentum of working on your goals and forming better habits. This month I will be focusing on helping you with blog cleanup...both your mindset and ways to actually clean up your blog itself.
One thing that many bloggers tend to do is fly from the seat of their pants with their posts. There is no purpose behind it, just random posts about random things (outfit post one day, email marketing tip the next). While some people use blogging just as a creative outlet, others want to use it as the marketing tool that it is. The problem is, if you aren’t blogging with a purpose, you won't be marketing anything but how to be confusing. Today I will be discussing 5 ways to blog with a purpose in the hopes that if you have no direction or endgame in mind, this post will help you discover it.
1. Decide what your endgame is
The very first thing to do is figure out what your end game is. You need to know what you are trying to accomplish from blogging before going any further. Do you want to make money blogging? How? Products, services, coaching, etc? Are you not interested in making money from your blog, but you want to build a following and provide helpful information? Think about where you see yourself and blog in 5 years. Will you expand to a podcast? Will you start guest speaking at events? Will you travel more and be able to blog from anywhere in the world because you're making passive income from your blog? By having an idea of where you want to be in the future, you can plan out what needs to be done now to get there.
2. Provide value in your content
What good is a blog going to do if the content on it sucks? When someone enters your blog, you want to draw them in and keep them there. You need to provide value to your readers so that they will look forward to coming back for more. One great way to be useful is to give specific examples of how things helped you rather than general tips that you’ve heard around the internet. People connect with others better when they hear their real life experiences. For example, when I talk about automation on my blog, I’m speaking from experience because I use automation everyday.
Providing value also relates to giving away freebies on your site. Everything doesn’t have to be about a sale. You can offer a free worksheet to accompany a blog post in the hopes that the post was so awesome the reader will happily provide their email for the free download (a GREAT way to build your email list). Offering free digital content on your site is an awesome way to provide value.
3. Narrow down your categories
Now that you know the purpose of you blog and you have brainstormed what it means to provide value, now you need to narrow down your blog categories and tags. By posting content related to a few categories, you help keep your visitors focused on the purpose of your blog. It also keeps you on track and helps you focus on the type of content to post. If you have 50 categories or tags on your blog, that’s a surefire way to lose reader interest (information overload!). Condense it down to 4-6 categories so that you can hyper-focus your content. Narrowing down your categories also shows what your expertise is in. It can be very confusing to find out what you specialize in if you use too many tags throughout your blog. I currently have 3 categories that I discuss here and in the near future will expand to 4 or 5 at most.
But what if you don't currently use any categories? This is a great time to start! Now that you have an endgame in mind, think of a few categories that your blog will focus on and clearly define them in your sidebar. This makes it easier for visitors to find what they're looking for. A blog that is easy to navigate is a must if you want repeat visitors.
4. Only post content that you feel good about
We have all been there. You haven’t posted in a couple of weeks and just want to post something so that your blog doesn’t look like a desolate wasteland. You quickly throw together a post that you’re really not proud of, but hey, at least you posted, right?! WRONG! You should be proud of every post that you publish. Besides, people can tell if a post was thrown together. If you don’t put the effort into creating an amazing post, why should anyone put effort into revisiting your blog? It’s better to post twice a month sharing AWESOME content than to half a$$ 10 mediocre posts just because you want to appear more active. I follow many bloggers that only post once in a while because I know that when they do post it’s going to be epic.
"If you don’t put the effort into creating an amazing post, why should anyone put effort into revisiting your blog?" Click to tweet that!
5. Just be you
It is so easy to get down on yourself because you’re not at the same level as other bloggers that you follow. The comparison game is real and effects so many every day. The great thing about you though is that...you’re YOU. No one else can be like you, think like you or do things exactly like you and you can’t do exactly like someone else either. There is nothing wrong with this because a world full of clones would be boring. Instead of trying to follow trends and be like everyone else, just be you. If you don’t want your blog to have the same layout that many other blogs have, don’t do it. If you want you social media feed to look different, go for it! Being unique sticks out and people can never call you an impostor. There are so many people out here that are thriving and not afraid of what other people think of them for being themselves (Cardi B. is a perfect example of this). You should do the same.