10 Lessons from 100 Blog Posts
As I know many small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) struggle to maintain a blog or wonder how they can ever get started, I thought I'd reflect on what I have learned and try to save you some of the pain I have had.
1. Focus on one audience. You may have several different segments of customers, prospects, or other readers. But it is very hard to be everything to everyone. We initially wanted to speak to prospects in publishing and marketing services companies (which serve SMBs) and retailers (which have different requirements). We also wanted to provide employee topics--we have quite a diverse team--and share the expertise of various executives at our company. An added challenge for Marketing was to find enough authors and "urge" them to publish something of interest on deadline—no easy task. And meeting the objective to get people to contribute regularly like guest columnists was virtually impossible. As a result, the wide array of topics and the continually changing perspectives meant that it was hard to see the mission of the blog.
We solved the problem by streamlining. We decided our audience was the SMB marketers, the same audience that our publishing and marketing services clients target. This enables us to demonstrate that we understand the challenges our clients face and have the expertise to help them support their end customers. It builds credibility for our services and the related support we provide. It also makes it easier for us to determine whether a topic makes sense for us to cover or not.