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Tanya Mykhaylychenko

Starting Your Editorial Blog

Illustration of person sitting on park bench with laptop and coffee, and big yellow lightbulb above her head with the word "Idea" in it.
Illustration of image sitting on park bench with laptop and coffee, and big yellow lightbulb above her head with the word "Idea" in it.
Arina Voitenko © 123RF.com

Your editorial blog is an excellent tool to attract new clients, maintain relationships with existing or past clients and optimize your website for search engines. Before you start blogging, consider these two starting points:

  • Your blog is not about you; its purpose is to answer your clients’ questions and offer valuable information.
  • Once you develop your content strategy, you also need a promotion strategy.

Here are some action items to start with.

Library of content ideas

  1. Keep a list of your clients’ difficulties and recurring questions.
  2. Save ideas from industry news or anything you read that applies to your clients.
  3. Create a list of SEO keywords using Ubersuggest, ntopic.org, Ahrefs, answerthepublic.com, or any other SEO tool to uncover content themes that would be most relevant.
  4. Have a list of work-related podcasts you listen to regularly.
  5. Look through your lists of ideas and keywords before drafting.

Blog post components

  1. Each post should be 500 to 700 words. Add one to three images per post using free stock photography websites.
  2. Make sure the title and headline contain keywords.
  3. Provide only top-quality, engaging content.
  4. Focus on answering your clients’ questions, rather than sharing personal observations.
  5. In the post, include a link to About, Contact and one other internal page.
  6. End each post with your bio and include relevant links.
  7. Encourage readers to subscribe to your newsletter or sign up for a free phone consultation (or take any other next step in your client engagement process).

Blog promotion

  1. Create a list of websites or forums where you will promote your blog: professional organizations, “blog carnival” sites, online communities and forums, local newspapers (free ad sections online, etc.), business partners’ websites.
  2. Include links to your blog and website in your email signature.
  3. Share your articles via Facebook groups, your Facebook business page and LinkedIn.
  4. Think of a client or a connection who can directly benefit from reading your blog post and send them an email with the link.
  5. Keep a list of social media channels where you will promote your posts and when (include best day(s) of the week and times to post).

Backlinking

  1. Create a list of professional organizations for guest blogging.
  2. Analyze their audience and content preferences/styles.
  3. Write down a list of their audience’s questions and problems.
  4. Read submission guidelines carefully.
  5. Set goals for how often you will produce a guest post.
  6. Create a list of topics for collaborative blogging. These usually include topics that are somewhat new to you but very relevant to your clients.
  7. Invite colleagues to contribute to your blog or write collaborative posts together. This ensures more exposure when several authors share a post on social media and better quality of advice for your readers when several experts contribute ideas.
  8. When sharing content, indicate how it provides value to the readers and how they might best use the information.

By focusing on these action items for starting an editorial blog and creating a steady stream of engaging content, you can expect your community of existing and potential clients to grow.

Do you already have an editorial blog? If so, what are some of your success stories?

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Previous post from Tanya Mykhaylychenko: Online Job Application: A Checklist for Freelancers

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