Here’s a really interesting post from James Cole, founder of the The Big Property List who has shared some of his top blogging tips with enterprise nation.
James founded his independent property portal and property advice website in 2009. The Big Property List Blog was named one of the UK’s top influencers in UK property on Twitter by Property Week and the blog has been shortlisted in the Primelocation property blog awards and named a favourite property blog by Channel Four.
He has built a large and loyal following – here’s what he advises to create an engaging business blog. We think number ten is particularly poignant – take note.
1. Start out with a WordPress blog – free and easy to set up, and progress as quickly as you can to a self-hosted WordPress.org blog. The former will help you get to grips with using this world class blogging and content management system (CMS) which can power your whole website.
2. Join the debate. Read more than you write – work out and map who the other bloggers/ influencers are in your market and what interests them and how they get traction with their readers. When you have something to add – write to them personally and give them something of value – an insight or information maybe. Build relationships. Comment constructively to other people’s blogs, do not spam.
3. Be disciplined, create a publishing schedule commit time and do it regularly, and keep doing it. It takes time to get traction and momentum.
4. Make sure your blog looks good. This doesn’t mean you have to pay for web design initially, but choose a suitable WordPress theme template that makes your writing look good.
5. Submit your blog’s RSS feed to as many directories as you can – set aside a morning/evening for this.
6. Once you get some traction, trade on it. If you have some readers, offer other bloggers guest post opportunities and once you have something to say, look for guest posting opportunities on others’ blogs.
7. Be topical. If you haven’t got any primary research or insight, comment on what people are talking about today. What’s going on in your market? How do other events effect your market – ie, the Olympics, or other events.
8. Use social media. Use Twitter and other social media platforms like Linkedin to build your own social profile, to find and interact with other people in your market, but decide on your main asset (ie, your blog) and use the other platforms to point to it. Otherwise you may find yourself juggling too many balls and none will get the traction you need.
9. Join some forums and read what others are saying about blogging. But don’t spend too much time on this and take what you read with a pinch of salt until you’ve tried it – the official WordPress.org support forums are a good place for technical advice.
10. Don’t give up.