Your ‘brand’ is how people know you, and ultimately, how your followers and clients will associate with you.
As you establish your brand, you are establishing the reputation your readers will expect from you when they visit your website, download your freebies, and purchase your products.
Your brand will set you apart from other websites, as well as make it easy for people to identify your content when they see it. They will want to read more, or they will bypass it for the next article.
How many times have you been driving down the interstate and you see the big yellow arches? You either decide to exit because you want to go to McDonald’s, or you bypass the exit to go to another fast food place because you specifically don’t want to go to McDonald’s.
Either way, the McDonald’s brand was familiar to you by the golden arches.
If you made the choice to pull off the interstate and stop because you wanted a Big Mac, your expectation was that it would be a double patty, have bread in-between the two beef patties with melted cheese, pickles and small diced onions, and it would be on a sesame seed bun with the famous mac sauce.
If your Big Mac was missing the mac sauce (which I had happen to me once!), you would feel disappointed and maybe even a bit angry. You might even turn around and go back for the error to be corrected if you purchased through the drive-through (which is what I did!)
This example shows the importance of branding with your website.
People will learn your brand and seek it out if they can relate to it. Therefore, delivering quality posts, products, images, etc., should be a top priority from the beginning of your blog journey.
Content is the articles you write and share on your blog, the digital products you create, and the images you add to your blog posts and pages.
There are key characteristics to creating epic content.
- The content offers actionable steps.
- The content is in-depth with definitions and examples.
- The content is useable and practical for the niche audience.
- The content is evergreen (timeless), or updated as necessary.
- The content delivers results when followed.
- The content distinguishes the brand from others and establishes the author as a thought leader in the niche.
- The author develops trust and credibility with the content.
- Readers are willing to share the content.
- Readers return for more content from the author.
INCREASING TRAFFIC (GETTING VISITORS TO YOUR BLOG)
It does not matter how great your blog content is if you do not have any people reading it.
Once your blog is started, it is time to grow the blog. In essence, this means getting people to visit your site and take in the information you are adding for their benefit.
There are key steps to follow in getting traffic to your blog.
- Create evergreen content
- Write content on a trending topic relevant to the blog niche
- Optimize posts for search engines (SEO)
- Include target long-tail key words
- Ensure your blog is fast-loading
- Write a great Meta description
- Add keywords to each post
- Write a catchy headline
- Internal link to prior blog posts
- Include your target word in the URL
- Respond to each blog comment
- Create content that is easy to read
- Participate in Question & Answer websites
- Optimize images for search engines
- Internal link to prior blog posts
- Build quality backlinks to your blog and website
- Write high quality content and post on a consistent basis
- Promote consistently in social media
READ MORE: GROW YOUR BLOG
GROWING YOUR EMAIL LIST
Your brand is established, you have written several blog posts so people have something to read when they get to your site (I recommend 7 posts before you launch your site to readers), and you have followed the key checklist to get traffic to your site.
It is time to start collecting names of the people that are loving what you are writing about and sharing with them.
WHY DO I NEED TO COLLECT READER’S EMAILS?
- To keep in touch with your readers and share updates for new information you posted, ultimately to get people back to your website.
- This allows you a way to build a relationship with your readers and stay in touch with the people that appreciate your blog content.
- Being able to communicate with your readers via email allows them the opportunity to get to know you better, building trust in you and your brand.
- Your readers that return to read more of your content will be your first customers. You want to be able to let them know when a product is available and even be able to offer them a discount as a thank you for being part of your tribe.
- Without your reader’s email addresses, if all social media disappeared, you would have no way to get in touch with them. Their email is a connection you have control of, unlike social media.
HOW DO I BUILD AN EMAIL LIST?
- On your blog, add an option for readers to sign up with your email provider – I use Convert Kit
- Engage with like-minded individuals on social media
- Host a webinar for your brand
- Host a webinar for a colleague’s brand
- Offer multiple options to signup on your blog and ensure they are in places where your readers will see them
- Create a private facebook group on your niche
- Be active on your own social media platforms
- Offer discounts and deals on your products
- Ask for shares and referrals
- Ask for testimonials to add to your blog/website encouraging others to become part of the tribe