Blogging: the evergreen business favourite – on your own site

When you think that the first ever blog post was written nearly 25 years ago, it makes you wonder why this genre of communication hasn’t been killed and cremated along with many other online comms notions that have bitten the dust since those early years. Why not?

It's good to blog on your own website

Do we still need to bang the drum about blogging on your own website or blogsite?

Well, you know how I love to bang the drum about blogging and how it’s the best way since sliced bread for you to get both traffic and SEO brownie points for your website…could be that’s why blogging is still going strong. Here’s how to make sure it stays strong for you…

In her 2011 article ” A Brief History of Blogging” early blogger Cameron Chapman wrote …

“Blogs have become an integral part of online culture.
Practically everyone reads blogs now, whether they’re “official” news blogs associated with traditional news media, topic-based blogs related to one’s work or hobbies, or blogs purely for entertainment, just about anyone you ask has at least one favorite blog. But it wasn’t always so. Blogs have a relatively short history, even when compared with the history of the Internet itself.
And it’s only in the past five to ten years that they’ve really taken off and become an important part of the online landscape.

Well, woooo-hooo. Blogging exploded

Cameron’s article appeared all of seven years ago (at this time of writing in 2018.)

In those intervening years blogging has yo-yo’d in and out of fashion, mainly according to the social media platforms’ increasingly enticing invitations to blog directly on to their real estate. Facebook and LinkIn are the particular enticers here.

Post your blogs and/or articles on our platforms so thousands more will see them!
So who needs your own website or blog? Our platform is all you need! 

Well, it all sounds fab. Except for one small niggle…

What if Facebook, LinkedIn or what platform we’re looking at decides that the nature of your post/blog/article is no longer in line with their strategies, policies, algorithms or any other potential changer of business direction?

Goodbye, blog post.

And there is nothing you can do about it.

I know, I know – I have written about this problem many times in the past. But still people fail to understand the benefit of blogging on your own real estate (i.e. your own website or blogsite) … amongst the many other benefits that proper blogging offer you, especially if you’re in business.

Here, then, are my top 10 reasons why blogging on your own site should be the permanent, evergreen fashion favourite in your marketing wardrobe…

#1. If you want people to visit your website for business, charity or other reasons, your blog posts are the most effective way of showing your readers that you’re good – and worth doing business with. They are not advertisements (and if they are they will lose you business fast) and as such people tend to trust them. In the current trend we could say that whereas adverts are the “what,” blog posts are the “why.”

#2. You don’t have to write a blog post and then wait for readers to come to you. You simply share a short abstract about each post on social media telling readers why they will benefit from reading your post – what they will gain from it, along with an invitation to click though to the whole post on your site. This costs you nothing apart from your time.

#3. The opposite of point #2 is when you write an article or post for, say, LinkedIn or Facebook, you then hope that readers will read your bio and link at the bottom of the article and click though to your site, even though they have already read the article and gained what they can from it. Which would you find the more compelling choice?

#4. Further to points #2 and #3, if your article or post has been published somewhere other than on your real estate, Google will regard the “somewhere other” post as the original. That means you gain nothing in SEO terms for your website/blogsite: “somewhere other” scores instead. If you then publish the same article on your own site the SEO preference will not change.

#5. In answer to the big platforms’ claims that thousands more will see your blog posts on those platforms, that’s not strictly true. The main platforms have all sorts of weird rules and regulations (which they do not share with the public) deciding which posts get seen by whom. Your abstract has as much if not more chance of being seen by a good number of people as your whole blog post would.

#6. A blog post does not have to be a work of literary art: it just needs to read or sound like you and share some useful, original information. Sloppy grammar and spelling are bad news but they are easy to correct with your spellchecker and correction sites like Grammarly.

#7. If you don’t know what to blog about, scroll through the “blogging” category on HTWB. Or if you’re feeling particularly kindly toward an impoverished author (boo-hoo) like moi, you can even buy my book, “How To Write Brilliant Business Blogs.” Print or Kindle.

#8. Another very good and cost-free way to find out what to blog about is to go and talk to your readers / customers / prospects and ask them what you can share that will be of genuine use and interest to them. Not only will this result in some good ideas for blog posts, but also will demonstrate the fact that you’re interested in them and what they have to say. You can do this either face-to-face, in your social media groups, or via email.

#9. Think carefully about the current fashion for video blogging (“vlogging.) To make this work, and searchable for Google and its cohorts, you need to provide a transcript and captions over the images. I read an angry post on Facebook the other day complaining that there were no captions on a video and it was “so annoying as I never listen to the audio.” Do you really think readers want to watch crawling or rolling captions over you gurning away to camera in silence, when they can read it faster and more nicely in plain text?

#10. Especially if you are new to blogging, please-please-please remember that building up a following for your blogging takes time. What builds it is your persistence, dedication and consistency of quality, and once that takes hold you will have a loyal following. HTWB, here, is still a blog – albeit a very large one with more than 1,500 articles and tutorials. It has between 2,500 and 3,500 page views per day from all over the world. But it has taken me seven years to build that (and it has been worth every minute!) Slowly, slowly, catchee monkey.

What experience have you had of blogging on social media platforms rather than on your own site?

Please share!