If you want to be seen as an industry expert or thought leader, a great way to boost your profile is to write a blog. Blogs are the best way of demonstrating your expertise online, controlling your message and building your reputation.
However, getting started can be overwhelming. I’ve come up with some ways that can help you get thinking more clearly about starting your own blog.
To start off, it’s important that you do some research. Look at other blogs in your area of expertise or industry, blogs from other leaders you admire and blogs you enjoy reading. Get inspiration on the type of posts that stand out and get interaction from readers.
Type of blog
You will have to choose between the many different blogging platforms available and whether you want a free blog or to pay for your blog. Remember that if your blog is free, your content is being hosted on someone else’s web property and they can delete it any time. There are benefits to paying for your own blog and it is not as expensive as you may be expecting. Owning your own blog means you will have total creative freedom over how and when your content is viewed by others.
Style and format
One way to keep readers interested in your blog is to change the format up by using different types of blog posts. For instance:
• How to/tutorial posts – These blog posts educates the reader and gives them practical information about a topic.
• List posts – Share lists of tips, strategies or tools that will be helpful to your readers. For example, top 5 business books to read.
• Case studies – As a business leader or expert in your field you may be able to share case studies that illustrate how your knowledge or area of expertise has helped a client or organisation you have worked with.
• Problem and solution – These types of posts allow you to pose a problem that you think is faced by your readers and solve that problem using your expertise.
• Stories – These are more personal blog posts where you share personal experiences to convey a point or message.
• Curate news – By curating or commenting on breaking news you can build your reputation as an expert.
When the time comes for you to write your first blog post keep in mind that writing for online is very different to writing for print. You may need to adapt your writing style to suit online reading. Blog posts should be a readable length, with short paragraphs and sub-headings so the content is easy to scan. Having a good understanding of your audience is essential so that you can write content that will appeal to them. Avoid spelling and grammar mistakes as these can discredit your blog by making it seem unprofessional. Lastly, include hyperlinks in your post to other online content, such as your website or social media channels.
Starting a blog may seem daunting at first, but once you have done the research and taken time to plan your blog, you will be well on your way to writing excellent content for your readers.
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