If being consistent with your blog posts and social media accounts is a challenge, you may have to change your mindset. While you may believe that blogging and social media are important, clearly if you are challenged to be consistent your belief is not being supported in reality.
Here are five ideas to help you believe that consistency is worth it:
1. Understand the Value
Even if you are not a numbers type, take a look at the statistics available to you through analytics. Use Google analytics for your website/blog and take a look at the volume of page views of your favorite blog posts. Your blogging platform may offer similar data. On your Facebook fan page take a look at the Insights section of your Admin panel ,there you will learn how many views, how many comments and how many times your post was shared. The numbers you find might be a pleasant surprise and serve as motivation to keep going.
If you aren’t racking up significant numbers due to lack of consistency, look to other bloggers that you admire or friends that clearly are active and successful in social media, ask them to share some of their numbers purely for a benchmark.
Understanding that you have an audience, or the potential for an audience, will make it easier to keep posting.
2. Picture Your Audience
The more vivid the mental picture you have of your audience, the harder it will be to blow them off. If you are blogging for business, the content you create will be richer and have greater value if you are picturing your current or future customers while you write. Imagine writing your blog post or social media update as if you are sending it specifically to an individual you know.
Some find it helpful to create a persona to represent a particular type of customer. If you want to learn more about creating personas to visualize your readers, review this blog on creating marketing personas.
3. Make a Date, Make Lots of Dates
Just like adding a workout routine to your schedule works much better when it is an actual appointment in your calendar, programming a regular time to write, research and review for your blog will definitely yield more consistent results. If you decide that eight blogs per month is your goal, what days and dates will you post them? When will you write and revise them? Put those dates in your calendar.
Be sure to pick the time when you are at your creative best. Writing the first draft at the crack of dawn works for me, and then editing, researching and revising for keywords happens on my laptop in spare moments later in the day or in front of the television in the evening.
And, while social media for your business can be a bit more flexible, it is not a bad idea to program in some regular time to plan your posts. Be sure to make time to review what is happening on other sites that you admire so you can stay up-to-date on trending topics. Don’t forget that social media and blogging live on a two way street, you will have better results if you are reading and commenting on others, not just creating and posting your own ideas.
4. Use Your Tools
Smart marketers use more tools, more effectively. If you fully understand the capabilities that have been programmed into your social media channel or blog program you might find it easier to stay in the flow of consistent and creative posts.
On Facebook it is easy to schedule your fan page posts. What works for me is to plan and post a month of posts that reinforces core brand issues on topics that are relevant to my customers. If I have two to three posts pre-scheduled in a week, this gives me the flexibility to add other posts throughout the week or to cross promote my most current blogs, and curate interesting and relevant content I discover.
Use your blog content management system (CMS) to keep your pipeline of content flowing with blog posts queued and scheduled to publish on dates of your choice. Use the system to capture ideas for future blog posts. Some bloggers use the CMS to store ideas for future blogs by creating an unpublished post with just a headline and a few sentences to describe the idea for the blog.
5. Be Kind to Yourself
If you take on more than you can handle or easily absorb into a regular routine, your chances of maintaining a consistent presence for your audience are not so good. Pace yourself. If blogging every other day is too much, dial back to twice a week. If you have four different social media accounts and you are not doing justice to any of them, pick the two best that align with your audience and make them count. Or, If you can’t do it all yourself, find help.
If you find it a chore to communicate with your audience, to delight them with original ideas, or help them with useful information, then publishing content that is engaging and remarkable will be difficult (maybe impossible)to achieve.
It is my belief that being successful in business comes easier for those that find joy in every customer interaction whether that happens in person or online. Maintain a blog and a presence on social media because you enjoy it, not because it is a chore.
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net