If you've ever put together and published a blog post, then you know how much work can go into it. There's the planning and research, the rough draft and editing, finding/taking/editing photos, the formatting, and finally, the publishing and distribution. (Whew!)
A blog post takes resources and time to create, and it's truly an investment in your business. And the awesome thing is that depending on the type of post, a blog post can "work" for you for YEARS to come.
But this is only if you truly make the most of a blog post. Below, you’ll find 11 ways to get the most mileage out of that initial investment. Don't let your blog posts go to waste!
1. Take advantage of social media.
Each time you publish a blog post, you should be sharing it on all of your social media accounts, including platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc. Create a "publishing" check list, and in addition to including things like proofreading and double-checking that links work, include the social platforms you need to share your post on.
2. Create graphics to represent the blog post and share on Instagram (and maybe Pinterest).
After reading #1, you might be wondering how you're supposed to share a blog post on Instagram and Pinterest. Create a simple graphic that represents the blog post to share—something that will get people curious and encourage them to want to read more. Canva and PicMonkey are both free services that offer simple design tools.
3. Install “share” buttons.
If your website platform allows for it, give your readers a way to easily “share” your blog posts right from the posts themselves. “Share” buttons at the top and bottom of the page are popular ways to do this, and they allow readers to post directly to Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and more.
4. Include links to your blog posts in email newsletters.
If you aren't sending out newsletters, you should be! (And not the ones with canned content from your brokerage!) My favorite email service is MailChimp, but there are lots of options out there. I recommend sending out a newsletter at least once a month. Your newsletter can highlight a few pieces of content you published since the last time you sent a newsletter.
5. Reference older blog posts in your new posts.
Linking back to old blog posts to give context and additional information is a great way to avoid having to rehash information you’ve already shared. It also keeps people reading and exploring your website.
6. Re-share your old content.
Some blog posts are only meant to be relevant for a short amount of time, while others will be valuable for years to come. For these “evergreen” posts, be sure to share them again, although not right away—wait a few months, or even a year. If they still contain useful content, you’ll want to be sure people have another chance to view them.
7. Update old posts with new information.
Sometimes all a blog post needs is a little refresh. Don’t delete a post and start over—take advantage of any SEO traction a blog post may already have and simply update it to include new, relevant information.
8. Make sure your blog is SEO friendly.
There are all kinds of SEO (search engine optimization) tools and strategies out there, but focusing on creating rich content that incorporates a few keywords and phrases is a solid place to start!
For example, if you're writing a post on the best happy hours in your neighborhood, you'll definitely want to include the name of the city and neighborhood in your post (and definitely in the title), as well as phrases people might search for. Think about what you would Google if you were looking for a great happy hour—probably something specific like "the best happy hours in Seattle" or "happy hours in Capitol Hill."
9. Include a call to action.
After someone is done reading your blog post, what are they supposed to do next? A call to action can be many things—maybe you prompt someone to contact you, or maybe you share other relevant blog posts they may like to keep them on your site exploring. Whatever you do, don’t leave a reader hanging!
10. Notify anyone who is featured in the blog post that they've been included.
Whether you've put together a holiday gift guide, a post that features quotes from locals, or a list of top cafes in your town, you'll want to be sure and notify each person and/or business that they've been featured in the post. This could mean tagging them in the original Facebook post, sending them a personal email letting them know, tweeting the article and tagging them on Twitter, etc.
Not only will they probably be excited to be featured, but they might even share your post with their audiences, getting your post even more exposure!
11. Share the post in a thoughtful way with people who might be interested.
Taking the time to personally reach out to someone who might especially love your blog post is a great way to spread the word. Here are several ideas:
Comment on your own Facebook post and tag people who might be interested. For example, maybe your blog post is about new restaurants in Columbia City, and you just helped your clients buy a house there. Tag them in the comments and say they might be interested.
Share your blog post on Facebook with the person who inspired it, and thank them for letting you borrow their idea.
If something comes up in conversation and your blog post has *exactly* the info that person needs, this is the perfect opportunity to share your post. (Acquaintance: "Do you know of any good brunch places in Fremont?" You: "Yes! Actually I wrote a blog post about my favorite Fremont brunch places. I'm going to send it to you right now!")