Shut Up & Write: 90 Words Can Change Your Business

Since May of 2011, I’ve written over 31,000 words on this blog. That may seem like a lot of content, but in the grand scheme of things, it’s not very much. The average novel is 60K – 100K words in length, meaning I’m only halfway to my first book.

Break it down and I’ve averaged just 89 words of content development per day since January of this year. Obviously, the actual creation was much more sporadic than that, but it helps to put things into perspective. These first two paragraphs you’ve been reading? Combined, they’re 100 words already.

Stop me if this starts to sound too much like an infomercial, but for as little as 90 words a day you can help save an under-appreciated blog–oops, it happened. Seriously, though… write! If you pick a topic and write 90 words on it each day, you’ll have a 400+ word article to post before Monday morning.

Giving this kind of attention to your blog can increase traffic and visibility on search engine result pages, two things many of our clients are constantly striving to improve.

Don’t Stop Believ– I mean Blogging

During the process of building a website, our clients are more likely to push themselves to create content because they know it’s an essential piece; their sites can’t go live until this static content is written.

The real issues arise once sites go live. Ideally, a new blog would maintain a steady stream of new, dynamic content after being launched. Unfortunately, after the strenuous push to get a site live, it’s easy to sit back and rest on your laurels.

We understand the sentiment, but it’s really just another excuse. At the risk of sounding like a broken recordbroken recordbroken record, we feel strongly about the importance of content creation and we hope that you will too.

Police Yourself

The easiest way to stay on track is to develop a posting schedule. Map out the structure of your blog posts in advance and, if necessary, dedicate a series of posts to one single topic. Breaking a larger topic into pieces will allow you to dig deep into the specifics without overwhelming your readers.

Additionally, if your post on a topic sparks a particular interest with a reader, the promise of a follow-up does even more to promote return readership.

Fresh, engaging content on a website not only gives users a reason to come back, but search engines as well. The more often new content is published, the stronger the draw to return becomes. More traffic and more content can help to boost those organic page rankings, leading to new visitors.

Keep an Open Mind when Looking for Inspiration

Don’t feel constrained by your business’s focus when you’re brainstorming or crafting an article; anything that can be naturally tied in to what you do–no matter how far removed–should be on the table.

After college I worked at a local screen-printing and retail store that had shops in college towns all across the Midwest. After much success with my store’s social media presence, I was pegged to write up to 3 posts a week for the company-wide blog.

Far from hard-hitting journalism, these posts were fun and engaging little articles that centered on t-shirt production, trends, and the creative process. Unless I wanted to write every post about the trials of shrinking cotton tees, though, I had to look all over for my next post.

In 2010, 300 people at UMass Amherst made the world’s longest California roll. On the surface it doesn’t seem like a story that would fit on a t-shirt-centric blog, but those 300 people were wearing custom tees to commemorate the occasion. A number of months later, my first blog here at BK spun the final launch of NASA’s space shuttle program into a discussion of negative space in logo design.

Not every blog post is going to blow the mind of your readers with new, exciting trade-secrets, but many people have a hard time seeing that when faced with the prospect of blogging.

Find a Balance & Find Your Voice

Those big, intricate and explanatory posts ARE important in the long run, as they will make your site an information resource. If those are your only posts once every few months, though, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Support those articles with a regular flow of smaller, easy to digest (and create) posts. With practice you’ll find your voice and writing those bigger articles will come more easily!

Without a doubt, the biggest hurdle when writing is starting and it’s usually due to a perceived lack of ideas. As someone who has been tasked with creating weekly content for a long time now, I can tell you with confidence that you’re only making excuses. Ideas are all around us and the information to research them is more accessible than ever before in human history. If you say you can’t come up with any ideas, you’re just not trying.

Now open up a new document and write your 90 words for the day, or tell us in the comments below: what’s your biggest challenge (or your best excuse) when it comes to blogging for your business?

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