I’ve never really known how to blog.
And the weird thing is that I never knew this until I started writing this post.
After one year of blogging, I thought I was doing everything right. I had the passion, the skills, the content, the network and a good number of readers. I even got a few clients with my Work With Me page.
But something still wasn’t right. I felt I was channeling all my efforts in the wrong direction. As I said, I got clients from my blog, but not the kind that could double your income overnight (my highest paying clients didn’t come from my blog). I had the audience, but not the type that could convert to clients. I had traffic, but it wasn’t from the sources I wanted.
So, I quit blogging….for a little while at least.
I did this because I realized I needed to stop doing something that many freelance writers are still doing. And this little fact is the reason why many freelance writers aren’t getting the results they want.
So, what’s this little “something”?
Stop Blogging like a pro
Blogging doesn’t always lead to clients. Well, that’s when you keep blogging like everyone else. In fact, for some freelance writers, blogging may never lead to clients.
This may sound crazy and false being that Oni has preached so much about why every freelance writer must blog. But the reality is that it is possible.
I bet you already own a blog and with every single advice you hear on how to make your blog count, you take action. However, when it comes to getting clients from your blog, blogging the general way won’t give you this.
You need to run your blog like a freelance writer and not necessarily like a blogger. But in order to do this, there are some facts that you’ve just got to know.
1. You Don’t Have To Be an Authority Before You Get Clients
What does it really mean to be an authority blogger?
As an authority blogger, you’re everywhere. Your name comes up on almost every “top 10” list, you’re top on the search engines for your desired keyword, and the “who’s-who” in your industry know who you are.
But should being an authority be your focus or just giving your readers quality content? The former was once my focus and because of this, I got overwhelmed with trying to know the top guys in the industry, sharing and over sharing my existing content on the wrong social networks, responding to comments and ensuring that I go over to their blogs to return the love, all in the name of getting my name out there. Little did I know that my quality was affected. The funny thing is I really didn’t know how this happened.
Now, I’m not saying that striving to be an authority is bad but don’t let it be your main focus. Writing QUALITY content every time is a short term goal that can be met every time. Becoming an authority is simply what happens when your quality gets out there. Writing resource posts, case studies and curated content are some of the best ways to help your articles stand out.
2. Traffic Doesn’t Always Convert To More Clients
What is the real purpose of traffic?
Traffic can either lead to sales (if you have a product), comments, social shares, or clients. In other words, it must convert! If what you want is for your traffic to get you clients and all you get in return are social shares, then it’s not achieving its purpose.
This was my case. But fortunately for me, the content wasn’t the problem here. It was where I shared it that created the havoc!
If you’re creating good content but you share it to the wrong networks, you’ll get nothing more than wrong results. However, shoving it in the faces of the right AUDIENCE would definitely cause the resultant traffic to convert in your desired way.
So the question isn’t how to get it to your audience but where your audience is. If you’ve been blogging for months now and you still don’t know exactly where your audience is, don’t write another post until you find it out.
3. Streamlined Guest Content Brings Reduced Results
Do all guest posts bring desired results?
I bet you’ve heard the following mantra before; “Guest posting rocks! Look for the top blogs in your niche, get connected with their content and write a quality guest post that can’t be ignored by the host blogger. Ensure you link to your blog so you don’t miss out of the resultant traffic.”
What happens when you’re a footwear blogger who only writes content for entrepreneurs in the internet marketing niche? If you realize that a particular blog in the internet marketing niche can give you the kind of clients you want, would you neglect the idea of writing a guest post for that blog just because it’s outside your niche?
Being too streamlined in your guest posting campaign is not the way to go. Writing in WIDE and combining niches gives you more results. To use our example above, you could write a guest post titled, “20 Internet Marketing Tools Online Footwear Retailers Can Use to Double Sales”. Get it?
4. What You Offer Doesn’t Entirely Matter
Will a Hire Me Page with poor copy give you clients?
While doing research for a particular project, I stumbled on lots of hire me pages by different freelance writers. This must have been due to the keyword I entered into Google. I decided to go through them, not as a freelancer but like a client, looking for a freelance writer. Then I discovered something.
I wasn’t really impressed or moved by the services they were offering. This is because they were all offering the same thing. For the few I recognized, I fell in love with one thing-
Their page COPY!
Most freelance writers offer the same kind of services; from Ghost writing to Guest posting. However, what makes some stand out from others is not necessarily how well you describe your services but how well you persuade the client to hire your services.
One way to test the quality of your copy is to split test different Hire Me pages. Oni did this and realized that by simply changing the headline of one of his Hire Me pages, his conversion rate increased. You should do the same.
5. Your Blogging Schedule Doesn’t Matter
Should you publish a post once a week or every day?
There’s so much advice in the blogosphere on the appropriate number of times you should have a new post on your blog. Before I settled for one post per week, I was pretty confused on what frequency to use. And I bet I wasn’t the only one.
When I kept to publishing one post per week, traffic on that particular day was higher than the rest. Sometimes, whenever I had so much time and inspiration to write, it became two posts per week. But after a while, one post per week turned to no post for two weeks. Then my traffic began to dwindle.
Daily Blog Tips publishes an article every single day. Writers In Charge publishes thrice in a week. The important thing is really not how many times you write per week but the number of weeks you stay CONSISTENT with your schedule.
However, your blogging frequency does depend on various factors, including time. But whatever you choose, consistency is more important because it stabilizes your traffic and makes it easy for your audience to stay engaged with your content.
The real question isn’t, “Do you have a blog?” but“What do you want to get out of your blog?” If you and I must blog like freelance writers who want clients, QUALITY comes before authority; targeting the right AUDIENCE comes before traffic; writing WIDE is better than being streamlined; your page COPY matters more than your services; and being CONSISTENT makes your frequency stand out. Just ensure you set your priorities right!