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Once you’ve spent a bit of time in the blogging world, you’ll realise there’s pretty much a tool to do anything. There are tools to grow your email list and send your emails, tools to share to social media and tools to automate your processes. If you need it done, there’s a tool to do it. But where does that leave you? How do you know what the single most important tool to grow your blog is?
Before I get into that, let’s have a quick look at the current process of growing our blog and what we all do when it comes to sharing our content.
The ‘Pre-Post’ Phase
This phase includes all the things that happen before you write your post. Without even realising it, there’s a whole heap that goes on.
We research content ideas to find out what will resonate with our audience, maybe we survey them or just observe them to see what it is they are sharing.
We can do keyword research with tools like Pinterest or Google Keyword Planner to find out what people are searching for and we can even create a Content Calendar so we know what we are going to post and when.
You might even use this phase to make notes next to your post ideas about what you’re going to convey in the post or even what content upgrade you’re going to offer to help grow your email list.
Creating Your Post Phase
You’d think this phase just consisted of writing your post, but there is so much more jam packed into it than that.
True, you do have to write your post, but you also need to ensure that it is SEO optimised, using the right keywords in the right places and structured in a logical way for your audience to read. You also need to make sure you link to appropriate articles (both yours and from others) where needed.
In addition, you also need to consider if you’re going to be offering a content upgrade or an opt-in for the post. Is there something more you can offer your readers for them to gain a more complete understanding of what you’re explaining?
You then need to create pinnable images and social media images to add to your post to make it more share-worthy, and don’t forget the ‘Click to Tweet’ quotes you can add in as well.
Sharing Your Post Phase
Now you’ve hit publish you’re in the ‘Sharing Your Post’ phase… but here’s the kicker. This phase never ends. Some people automate this process with tools like Co-Schedule or Buffer sharing all of their posts to social media for them. But then there are others who say that automating the process hinders your reach. You can also use tools like Tailwind (my fave) to share to Pinterest to keep your reach going without having to spend too much time promoting yourself.
Can You Tell What The Key Element To This Entire Process Is?
That’s right. Without your content, none of the above exists. Without your content you don’t have a site. Without your content you don’t have anything to offer. Without your content you can’t share, grow or create a unique standpoint.
It’s so easy to get caught up in the process, especially when there’s so many offers of ‘magic’ tools that will promise to grow your audience overnight and give you everything you need to ‘explode your traffic’. But the one crucial element that is always needed is your content.
Creating content is the single most important tool to grow your blog.
Think about it.
If you have 50 posts on your site, you have 50 ‘opportunities’ to entice someone to come to your site, and then 49 more to keep them there and look around.
But, if you have 200 or 2000 posts on your site, that’s a whole lot more opportunities to grab someone’s attention and get them to click through.
Yes, there are tools that make our life easier and help the whole process move along, but at the end of the day if you’re not creating new content and doing so on a regular basis, then you’re not going to grow.
You may not need to post every single day to capture the attention of your audience, but you do need to post regularly. Be mindful if you fall into the trap of posting for the sake of posting, always ask WIIFT? What’s In It For Them? What does your reader gain by reading your post?
The two main categories for posts are education and entertainment. Are you educating your audience or entertaining them? Be clear on your intention and make sure your post delivers.
So, before you get caught up in the latest ‘tool’ promising to help grow your blog, be sure that your content is always your number one tool being used!