8 Tipping Points to make 2013 the Breakout Year for your Blog

Tipping Point

Blogging can be powerful marketing, but merely having a blog doesn’t make you a marketer. So, if your blog isn’t pulling in traffic, why do you publish it? Like most things, blogging requires a certain threshold of activity before it starts to yield any discernible results.

Here’s how to find your tipping point and make 2013 the breakout year for your blog.

1. Know Why You Blog

This might sound a little too obvious to be a useful bit of advice, but it’s a question most business owners don’t adequately address, bloggers among them. Industry leaders– the people with the really big ideas– pretty much always know exactly why they do what they do. They are motivated by their vision and mission, which permeates their daily efforts. Their reasons why are simple, emotional and personal. They aren’t driven by products or features or tactics– those are just the things that help them achieve their true vision.

As Simon Sinek explains in this fantastically enlightening TED talk, great leaders have the same access to the same resources as everyone else (sometimes even less, in the beginning) but they move people, because people identify with why they do what they do.

What drives you to blog? What is the big idea that your blog is in service of? You might think that owning a home remodeling business doesn’t have any good reasons, other than to make some money. Not so. You probably believe that your home is your castle, and everyone should be lucky enough to live in a beautiful space. As an affiliate marketer, you might believe that everyone deserves financial independence. And so on.

Your blog is only what you do to convey a message. What is your driving message and why?

2. Focus Your Niche

Readers don’t find you by searching for a wide array of things; readers find you from one specific search at a time. That’s how search engines work, too. Without focus, neither search engines nor readers will understand what your blog is really about, making it difficult to gain traction.

Even if you don’t depend upon search results and instead capture traffic through referrals, social and paid sources, visitors still need to understand your focus in order to stay on your site, remember you and come back. Any site can provide shallow information, but being a deep resource is the hard part, and that takes focus. Matt Cutts of Google advises this very approach. Choose a narrow set of keywords that define your topic and stick to them.

Once you’ve established yourself in a niche, then you can begin expanding to more and more related topics, that is, if you do decide to broaden your site. There may never be need to!

3. Fill Your Hopper

Every time you write a post, there’s probably one or more ideas that you may have touched on, but didn’t explore in depth. That’s a new article topic just waiting to happen. (I could probably write eight new posts from this one.) So, when you’re composing a post, in addition to getting it live, start at least one new spin-off while the ideas are fresh. Keep your new article ideas in one place so that when it comes time to write, rather than starting from scratch, you can simply run with one of the ideas you already started.

While you’re browsing the web, you likely have some go-to blogs and industry news you read regularly. Bookmark interesting items in a Blog Post Ideas folder. Even better: when you share a post, use your own tweets and Facebook likes or updates as a source of new article topics.

4. Schedule Your Blogging

Unlike most business-critical tasks, blogging doesn’t get attention unless you find the time. Very few influential blogs are built as a side project– it takes prioritizing to make it happen. Set appointments to get the writing done, and stick to them. Use reminders, tell your friends and associates.

I like to set 50 minute “power hours” in which I have enough time to get some real work done, but not so long that I worry about ignoring other items that might come in while I’m writing. I also like to start articles early in the morning, before the pressures of the day steal my time and mental energy. Even if I don’t finish what I start, starting is often the hardest part, and I like to start at least one new article every day.

5. Give and Get Guest Posts

Guest blogging makes the world go ‘round. It gives you access to broader audiences in your niche, provides links and referral paths for new visitors, helps you scale up content production, and it makes for some real-life networking that online marketers sometimes seem to forget.

Be generous about the content you give away. You’re more likely to be found by publishing on many sites, than by hoarding all your content on your own. Besides, when you give good content, you can get a lot of great content (and social shares and exposures) in return.

6. Create a Series

ZK’s own Good Morning Sunday series is a perfect example of giving readers “appointment” reading on a regular basis. His tone and subject matter approach is truly enjoyable, mostly because it embodies his “why.” I really like reading his series. I even like the name! Another blogger writes “10 Things We Didn’t Know a Week Ago.” Many of the points are on-topic for his blog, others are there for fun and interest.

People like their habits. Make reading your blog one of their habits by giving them a regular expectation, and a payoff for sticking with you.

7. Deliver Gold Nuggets

With some 200 million English language blogs on the internet, there is a whole lot of filler content swimming around, taking up space. It doesn’t attract readers (or at least it doesn’t bring them back), and it doesn’t help build a durable web presence. Blogs that don’t have a direction, a purpose, or “gold nuggets” that readers can really use I call BINOs: Blogs in Name Only.

Filler content, or hastily written posts that are published just to get more pages up might have helped SEO and overall traffic a couple of years ago, but not anymore.

In order for your blog to deliver value to you, it must deliver value to your readers. The good news is that you don’t have to blow people’s minds day in day out. You just need one gold nugget in each of your posts. That’s enough. So when you get ready to press the publish button, make sure you’ve got a nugget in there. Otherwise, leave it as draft until you can make that point, offer up a memorable quote or a singular insight readers will remember.

8. Tap into Your Back Catalogue

Every single piece of content you’ve written is feed stock for every new piece of content you will write. Like filling your hopper to keep the ideas flowing, drawing on your “back catalog” lets you riff on topics you’ve already covered, while linking to your own pages. This post, for example, contains ideas I’ve written about before, but never quite in this way. And I’ll probably reference this guest post on my own blog in the future.

As ideas develop and mature, build upon the foundations you’ve already written. Over time, your blogging becomes a body of work, not just a string of articles, hoping to rope in some web traffic. That’s how to blog like you mean it.

Image Credit:Garethsworld

Article by Mike Sobol

Mike has written 1 articles.

You can follow webtrafficroi on Google Plus, Facebook and Twitter here. Subscribe to WebTrafficROI feed via RSS or EMAIL to receive instant updates.


MaxBlogPress Ninja Affiliate

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Ti Roberts January 23, 2013, 2:44 pm

    Fabulous tips, Mike. I already have several of these in place. I’ve been focusing on doing a lot of high profile guest posting and giving away insanely valuable golden nuggets. I’ve got 3 guest posts down and several more to go. I’m starting to see a significant increase in my traffic and interaction. So I will definitely keep on this path. Thanks for sharing this awesome tips with our bizsugar community. I appreciate it!

    Ti

  • Mike Sobol January 23, 2013, 4:02 pm

    Thanks, Ti! My pleasure. I absolutely love guest blogging– it’s responsible for a big chunk of my traffic and improved SEO. It’s also fun!

  • SEO Labs January 23, 2013, 6:34 pm

    A blog is like a web page that is updated regularly. So, it is important to always create new articles for the benefit of having new clients and more visitors.

  • Sam@Goa trip January 24, 2013, 2:49 am

    Amazing tips to make your solid identity in blogging world and for the you should notice these two things always
    1. Niche of every reader
    2. Productivity

  • Eskimosoup Web Design Hull January 24, 2013, 3:27 am

    Blogging can be powerful marketing, if you practice these tips by proper manner. All the work can be properly developed by this. The guide which you suggest here can give us ideas and build up the foundations in Blogging.

  • Nick Stamoulis January 24, 2013, 9:32 am

    Scheduling time to blog is essential. If it’s not built into your daily calendar there’s a good chance that it will get put to the side when things get busy. Keeping the blog active is just as important as every other business duty that you have.

    • Mike Sobol January 24, 2013, 10:24 am

      Absolutely right, Nick. In fact, I just wrote another post about that over on SEP, which ought to be published soon!

  • piyush joshi January 24, 2013, 1:01 pm

    hello Mike,

    wow very nice of you Mike you tips are really solid even the making of series is the best among them i see it help my blog and by your tips i improve my blog,i appreciate your time management concept keep it up friend.

    thank u

  • ZK January 24, 2013, 1:19 pm

    Thanks Mike for mentioning the Good Morning Sunday Series :)

  • Vikram January 25, 2013, 12:38 am

    Hey Mike, You have pointed out some really good information about blogging in 2013. Although 2012 was not so good for my blog, that’s why i am more determined in doing good this year. As you said above, i am concentrating on my blog’s niche but i want to know that is it good to update the previous posts of the blog?

  • Ahsan January 25, 2013, 1:01 am

    Blogging is a difficult task. If you don’t have plan, you’ll fail after certain period. You added some good points for new bloggers

  • Jasmine January 25, 2013, 4:24 am

    Great tips. About the appointment reading from ZK, you are absolutely right. Every Sunday or Monday I will drop by to read those. If one day ZK started to charge for reading the series, I believe I will pay to read too!

    ZK, cool eh?

  • Rajkumar Jonnala January 25, 2013, 4:28 am

    One needs to a great research on his niche to deliver ideas without exhausting. So updating ourselves daily is the need of hour.

  • Custom writing services January 25, 2013, 4:28 am

    Hello Mike.

    I agree with you that one of the best ways to keep an active site/blog is by having a clear niche. Its about having all the facts about who you are writing for, why you are writing for them, what kind of content is good for the niche and how you plan to achieve your targets. Most of these things you have mentioned i have tried and tested them and i can boldly say they work miracles.

    Thanks for sharing and refreshing my blogging mind!

  • new york business logos January 25, 2013, 5:36 am

    The most important point you discussed is “Give and Get Guest Posts” because it is rapidly growing trend now a day and definitely it is giving results. In December 2012 i created a blog and now at the end of 2013 year i want to see my blog in top searching results against particular keywords. For this purpose your shared points are techniques are very helpful to meet my this year resolution.

  • Mr.Fred January 25, 2013, 11:29 am

    The first thing which every blogger need to keep in mind is that they should make an action schedule for blogging to get success.

    thanks for the awesome tips.

  • YonipZone January 31, 2013, 12:58 am

    Thanks for the Tips, hope to do this year !!

    Keep it up!

    – YonipZone

  • paper writing services March 23, 2013, 3:00 am

    Yeah… bloggers must be willing and ready to share content. This means you have to accept guest bloggers and also guest post on other people’s blogs. The only issue is that some bloggers are so selfish that they think sharing will be giving the other party an upper edge. You have shared a very informative post. Thanks for posting.

  • Blanca @ Business Ideas March 23, 2013, 12:24 pm

    Nice job breaking down the fundamentals of niche marketing Mike. Specialized niche helps you only to focus on your target audience without having to be bothered about the relaxation. You are only centered on your prospects and their own needs. Use marketing methods that work nicely for niche market and success will you need to be round the corner.

  • Christopher @ Live Call Answering Australia April 20, 2013, 10:29 am

    Informative tips! Guests Blogging on quality and authority blogs is the best way to increase traffic.