If you have a blog, congrats! You’re ahead of most freelance writers.
While many freelancers write blogs for other people, too few take time to blog for themselves. And in the long run, this can actually start to hurt their careers.
Blogging isn’t just for fun anymore. Sure, in the days of LiveJournal and Blurty, everyone took to the web to share their innermost thoughts. But now, blogging is a bonafide business move. It can bring in clients, prove your worth, and help you build the professional reputation you need to skyrocket your career.
Sadly though, even the few writers who blog tend to do it wrong.
Yes, they’ve certainly taken the first step by creating and writing a blog, but most aren’t following through to make that blog really work for them.
That’s where I can help. Check out this list of mistakes you may be making with your blog, and learn how to course-correct, before it’s too late!
You’re Not Monetizing It
Did you know that you can make money off your blog?
And I don’t mean in the “it will attract clients” type of way. Yes, it will absolutely help you draw in more clients and projects, but that’s not the only way you can make cash off your blogging venture. In fact, there are a number of ways you can monetize your site and make money with each and every post you write:
- Sell ad space on your site – Once you start to gain some traffic, seek out companies and other websites that have a similar audience to yours, and see if they’d be interested in placing an ad on your site. They can pay you a set amount per day, week or month, or even per click – whatever arrangement you like. If your blog is hosted on WordPress, there are lots of plugins that make posting and rotating ads easy, like this
- Try Google Ads – If you don’t want to do the legwork for advertising, sign up for Google Adsense, and Google will auto-populate your site with pre-made ads chosen just for your visitors. You’ll get paid every month for the clicks and views they receive, and you don’t have to do any additional work at all.
- Delve into affiliate marketing – With affiliate marketing, you get paid a commission for promoting certain products and websites on your blog. This involves signing up to an affiliate program, including specific links, and you’ll qualify for payment instantly when a reader clicks it and purchases. I have an affiliate program for my products if you are interested. You can learn more about that here.
- Review products – This one depends on the topic of your blog, but if it’s appropriate, consider reviewing a product or service in one of your posts. Many companies will pay good money for this type of publicity!
You Don’t Post Enough
It’s not enough to have a blog and just post every other month. If you want to build up a following (and cash flow), your blog needs regular, consistent attention.
Create a posting schedule and write at least once or twice a week for your blog, at a minimum twice a month. If you can manage it more often, by all means, do so. The more great content you post, the more readers you can pull in.
You’re Not Using SEO
If there are any mistakes you’re making with your blog, it’s probably this one, and I know why.
A lot of freelance writers cringe when I say “SEO.”
It sounds too techy – like something they could never grasp or handle without the help of some IT pro. But let me put those rumors to rest: SEO, at least from a blogging standpoint, really isn’t that complicated.
You just need to determine a few keywords (terms you want to be found for in search engines) and start working those into your posts and blog titles, whenever possible.
If you write business content, for example, you probably want to be found for “business writer” or “freelance business writer.” To help raise your ranks for these terms, you simply need to start including those terms in your posts and post titles, and search engines will take notice over time. Bonus points if you include the terms in your meta descriptions and tags, too.
If you want more info on SEO, check out this post on beginner SEO blogging tips.
You’re Not Passionate About It
Your readers are smart. They can tell when you’re just going through the motions, and they don’t want to read anything that’s bland or boring.
Make sure your blog is about something you genuinely care and are passionate about.
This will 1) make your posts more exciting to read and engage with and 2) make it easier for you to write and write regularly. Both mean great things for your blog in the long run.
You’re Not Promoting It
Once you write a post, make it work for you!
Promote it on your Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter pages, and share it with colleagues and friends. Add it as a sample on your portfolio page/site or include a link to it in your email signature. The more people who see your post, the better!
As an added bonus, the more your post is shared and talked about on social media, the more search engines will take notice. And that can mean a higher search ranking for your blog, your site and your keywords! It’s a win-win in every way.
Make Your Blog Work for You
Start monetizing your blog now, write about what you love, and stay consistent with a posting and promotion schedule. The rest will fall in line!
Want more traffic to your blog? Check out these tips.