Blogging doesn’t come easy. A lot of effort goes into coming up with ideas each day and spinning them out into useful articles for our lovely readers.
Some days are certainly harder than others and everyone suffers from writer’s block every now and then.
To help other bloggers through those dark times, I’ve come up with 14 places to look for inspiration when you’ve got a blank page in front of you and a looming deadline.
There are undoubtedly other tricks of the trade that I’ve neglected to mention, so please share your own sources of inspiration in the comments.
I worked on a conference talk called Ban the Blog with a colleague about a year ago. It was a purposefully provocative title and an extreme view, but one I believe many businesses and website owners need to heed (yes, I get the irony of writing this on a blog platform, but hopefully you'll see past that minor contradiction).
Blogs can often become a content dumping ground and despite the rising influence of structured content strategies into the broad digital direction, let's start a blog' is still a statement that is regularly touted in planning sessions.
But creating a blog and chronologically presenting what you produce isn’t necessarily the answer to your content needs.
Putting your content in date order may make sense in some instances (and with some CMS platforms it’s your only option), but just because it's your latest, it isn't necessarily your greatest or the most relevant for your audience.
The ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) published a memo last week reiterating its rules on using blogs for advertising after receiving a growing number of queries from bloggers on whether they can accept payment from brands.
Apparently some in the blogging community have raised concerns about PR agencies offering them money to advertise on their behalf while encouraging them not to declare that they’re doing so.
Blogger outreach is an important part of digital marketing as it’s an effective way of getting influential people to speak about a brand or product, as well as earning links that help with SEO.
However if a blogger is paid to write a positive review about a product or service then they have to make it absolutely clear that the content is an advert rather than a normal article.
Hearty congratulations are in order in light of a big milestone that the Econsultancy blog team has reached, having for the first time surpassed 1m page impressions in a calendar month. Not bad for a niche B2B publishing operation!
That said, we don’t create content simply to generate page views. The blog team contributes so much more to our business. I shall explain why.
A recent study found that only about a third of Fortune 500 companies maintain a blog, a statistic that I find perplexing, so I thought this might be a good time to remind ourselves – and you, dear reader – of why we blog, and what it’s doing for us.
Responsive design is one of the hottest trends in web design at the moment as it’s seen as the most effective way of creating a consistent user experience across all devices.
For blogs that rely on social to promote their content it’s very important to have some sort of mobile optimised site as it’s inevitable that a large proportion of social referrals will come through mobile devices.
For small businesses or amateur bloggers a responsive WordPress theme is an excellent option as it allows the site owner to offer users a mobile experience without spending loads of money.
There are many responsive templates available either for free or for a very limited outlay, so I thought it would be useful to round up a few of the more impressive options.
Drinks brand Sprite managed to outperform its rivals and achieve the greatest exposure on Tumblr in July.
This is despite the fact that it only blogged three updates, while second-placed MTV posted a massive 114 times.
The findings, which come from a report by Simply Measured, show the high potential for long-term amplification on Tumblr compared to other social networks, as nearly all of Sprite’s 85,000 reblogs were owed to a single post made prior to the study period.
The Sprite post in question is an animated GIF of a game of spin the bottle. Not very complex, but it captured the imagination of Sprite’s audience and isn’t something that can necessarily be replicated on other networks.
It has been a long-standing belief of mine that writers need to create headlines that sell, in order to persuade people to click.
A descriptive headline isn’t good enough, despite what the SEO Class Of 2006 might tell you, and neither is a clever pun, which will no doubt horrify traditional sports journalists all over the world.
Adding a punchy or emotive word to a headline is absolutely vital to enticing that all-important click, and it can really help encourage sharing.
This is where adjectives and verbs come into play.
Blast it. I can’t write. I’ve been sat at my desk all morning pontificating. Trying to get something down on paper and it’s just not happening.
In the age of content marketing, writer’s block is a big problem. And frankly it’s not the first time I’ve had this problem. So how do I keep those web impressions a-rolling?
Turns out the answers fairly straightforward: I take a leaf out of the Coen Brothers book, and I write a post about not being able to write a post...
I’ve now been at Econsultancy for more than 18 months and in that time I’ve written more than 1,000 blog posts.
When I first started my background was in journalism and research, so I had relatively little knowledge of digital marketing and ecommerce.
Therefore I thought it might be interesting to look back on a few things I’ve learned from working for an online publisher.
I might be wrong of course, but as you’ve clicked on it you may as well read my 11 tips for getting along in blogging...
As a content marketing agency, we are always telling people what a vital role content plays in driving all elements of your digital marketing, be it social media, email marketing, SEO etc.
The good thing is that most people get this now. We seem to have moved past the educational phase with more and more companies publishing fresh content on their websites on a regular basis.
What we wanted to demonstrate, however, was the significant impact that an increase in content output (that is still high quality and original) can have on some of the key digital marketing metrics, such as website traffic, search engine rankings and social media reach.