Archive for business blogging

A Brief History of Business Blogging
(And How to Make It Profitable)

Business-BloggingHow do you make money from business blogging? This is a question I was recently asked by a friend. It seems like a straightforward question, but the answer is complex.

Most blogs aren’t profitable, but people devote a great deal of time and energy to them. There must be a good reason, no? You need to understand how to use business blogging to suit your business goals.

Things have changed in the blogging stratosphere, rapidly. Let’s review how it all started, because it’s revealing.

According to NYMag, the first business blog was created in 1994, Do you remember Altavista, Webcrawler or AskJeeves? In case you don’t, that’s how early adapters searched the internet.  And then Yahoo launched in 1994 and utilized man-made descriptions with each URL. This was a game changer for many. Here are a few key dates that led up to business blogging: Read More→

Business Blogging: 4 Tips
PLUS 1 Great Video on Creativity

Business-bloggingBusiness blogging can be frustrating for professionals. Does this happen to you? You sit down to (finally!) write on your business blog, you’ve done a bunch of research, you’ve created lists, outlines and even saved a few great blog post drafts, but you haven’t actually published any of your content… There always seems to be one more thing to check before you pull the ‘publish’ trigger.

I talk to professionals all the time who are ‘blog publishing shy’. Perhaps the most crucial stage of business blogging is implementation: PUBLISH THE POST! In this series of blog posts, I’ve been sharing my tips on the four stages of writing a great blog post. It follows the same steps of any creative process:

Preparation => Incubation => Illumination => Implementation

Business blogging is creative but it also follows steps. If you want to write quality content that reflects the quality of your services as a professional then follow these four steps all the way through to implementation.  Creative blog posts are written by a process. Read More→

The 4 Step Creative Process for Writing Blogs:
(& Happy Birthday to WOW Blog)

Writing-BlogsDo you struggle with the creative process of writing blogs? Do you cringe when you need to find a topic for your blog? You’re not alone.

Over the past 11 years, I’ve written a ton of information about writing great blog posts and newsletters, as well as e-books, white papers and articles to increase your visibility. Sometimes it feels like I’ve already written as much as I have to say. There’s nothing new, it’s been done before.

But then I remember that people forget and new people come to visit all the time. It’s motivation to keep my blog posts fresh and interesting.

So how do you choose a topic for writing blogs that will be most relevant to your readers, and hasn’t been said 1,000 times before? Trust the process and get busy.

Almost 100 years ago, Graham Wallas observed that creative solutions appear sequentially:

Preparation => Incubation => Illumination => Implementation

The same is true for writing quality content – blog posts are written by following a creative process. Read More→

Business Blogging Time-Saving Tips for You (and Your Cat)

When it comes to business blogging, how do you save time and still get results? How do you make blog tasks so easy your cat could do it?

It’s the dog days of summer but around our house that expression isn’t acceptable. Doodles and Buster would have a cat fit. Here in Mexico we’re in the rainy season, when the heat of the Summer is tempered by the cool nightly rains. Which brings our year-round average temp to a mild 73.  Not bad when you’re a tennis enthusiast and enjoy time outdoors.  Which is why it’s even more important to me to save time when blogging.

Over the years I’ve purr-fected my blogging system. And as a thank-you to all my content marketing blog clients (shout out to all my new and renewing content subscribers who took advantage of our sale last week), I want to share it with you all. Plus I figure it will be good Kitty Karma – maybe it will even help keep the cats off Facebook. They want their own pages now… Read More→

Business Blog Writing: How to Avoid Time-Suck

Avoid Time Suck

How do you avoid time-sucking traps when it comes to blog writing?

If you’re anything like me, you may have found yourself (a time or two!) with nothing to show after sitting in front of your screen for 90 minutes.  Yup. It happens to the best of us.

You sit down with your coffee, open email, and an hour later still haven’t posted on your blog. You decide you need inspiration, so you check out your feed reader.

Ninety minutes later, you still haven’t started a new blog post. You’ve probably read some really great stuff, but now you’re really behind schedule, and time is money. You feel anxious, overwhelmed, and you move on to client projects (but I’ve got a tennis match so I’ll have to come back later…)

Sound familiar? Change a few details and I bet this is your story. Read More→

2 Sure-Fire Ways to Inspire Your Blog Writing

Business-blog-writingA few years ago I polled readers and asked what their biggest blogging challenge is. Turns out, it’s not lack of time, it’s lack of inspiration. Does your blog writing lack inspiration? Is it hard to get really fired up when starting to write a post?

I get that.  When I was just starting out as a blogger (was that really over 15 years ago?!) I could just feel that screen staring right back at me.  What can a blogger blog about to other bloggers?

Lack of inspiration comes from not being sure you’re doing it right, or doing it well, and lack of confidence that it will be worth it… in other words, fear and doubt.

Fear and doubt go away when you know what you’re doing, and have a system that will allow you to move forward confidently.

Here are two ways you can side-step fear and doubt, and write frequent, consistent quality posts and develop a blogging habit that will grow your abilities over time. Nobody starts out writing well. Yet, everybody’s got a piece of genius within them, so it’s a question of finding it and putting it on paper, quickly, before any demons get in the way. Read More→

4 Reasons to Publish on a LinkedIn Blog

LIBloggingDo you know about LinkedIn blogs? And are you blogging yet on LinkedIn? I’m not yet, but I will be right after I write this blog post!

Since early 2014, LinkedIn opened its publishing platform to its 300+ million users. Here is your chance to show your expertise in your professional life and without character restrictions! The importance of using a LinkedIn blog is that it will add dimension and help in building a well-documented profile.

According to Business 2 Community, in-depth content works best, don’t hesitate to write very detailed and specific posts about your industry. Contrary to what you are being told for traditional blog posts, the ones being picked up by Pulse (LinkedIn’s app to shed some lights on the best contributions) are pretty wordy with almost no visual. Indeed, you should opt for a newspaper-like kind of formatting. Black text on a white background.

  1. Here’s the real upside, once you publish, all of your contacts will be notified of your posting and again, remind your connections that you are indeed an expert in your field.
  2. Recruiters will notice you as well. Now, that may not seem like a big deal if you already have a job, but, recruiters are looking for more than potential employees. Let’s say, for instance, you are a career coach or a leadership development consultant. You may be writing a post about the benefits of hiring an expert, such as yourself and a recruiter happens to read your blog post, this could lead to consulting work for you within that company that the recruiter works for.There’s not a lot of folks blogging yet on LinkedIn, yet. It’s still a fairly open marketplace for your expertise. Publishing on LinkedIn will give you a real edge, and you should start now while there isn’t much competition.
  3. LinkedIn is not just about your expertise (although we’d like to think that some times), but it’s about others as well. Here is a golden opportunity for you to get new business contacts, build meaningful relationships and so on. If you’re writing on a regular basis and your writing is of value, even 3rd degree connections may possibly invite you to connect. The possibilities can be endless with just one simple blog post.
  4. Just think of all of those comments! Just think of all of those conversations you can start and get involved in. Besides, that is what “social media” is all about. We forget that sometimes. It’s about the conversation, it’s about being social.

Guest Author: Christine Buffaloe is a social media wizard for authors, coaches, speakers and consultants. Her company SerenityVA will help you succeed with social media and LinkedIn, including what you need to know about posting to your LinkedIn blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and of course, LinkedIn.

10 Great Things for 2014:
My Business Blog Gratitude List

thank youYou may have heard me say it before – my favorite holiday is Thanksgiving.  It’ a fairly big holiday in the U.S., and a great way to celebrate gratitude. This year, I updated my gratitude list, and perhaps you can relate and it will inspire you to make up your own list.

I’m grateful for (in no particular order):

  1. Business blogs that make it easy to stay informed and connect with others
  2. LinkedIN, Twitter and Facebook that make it easy AND fun to build communities!
  3. Shopping cart systems like Kick Start Cart that make it easy to build a database list that’s easy to segment, broadcast messages, and seamlessly process registrations and purchases
  4. Google that makes it easy to do research and locate information and people
  5. SEO tools like Scribe, that make it easier to optimize blog posts for better search engine results
  6. Smart Internet marketers who by their clever ideas light the way and show us what’s possible
  7. Stupid Internet marketers who show us what not to do
  8. The 2.8 billion people connected to the Internet world-wide, some of whom participate and contribute
  9. All the geeks behind the scenes who continue to develop software and hardware for the rest of us
  10. All of our clients who have invested their confidence and time with us to learn better online marketing. Thanks so much for reading. Thanks for subscribing. Thanks for the occasional comments, tweets and re-tweets. You make my life so much more interesting. It’s a privilege to write here for you. You keep me on my toes, reading, learning, writing.

I wish you the best for Thanksgiving and for the end-of-the-year festivities in your own countries!


The Biggest Mistake Business Bloggers Make (and how to avoid it!)

Oops!The biggest mistake business bloggers make is that they are frequently ego-centric. This isn’t necessarily all bad, it simply doesn’t bring the blogging results that smart professionals expect.

Bloggers are so passionate about their message and their expertise, they preach. They shout. They proclaim. They implore. They explain. They document and support their logic.

But they forget about that old background tune that repeats in the head of all readers: “What’s in it for me?” Bloggers assume that their readers are like them and interested in the same things.

How to Avoid Bad Blogging

If you want good advice, refer to the classics. There’s no better style writing advice than The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B.White. Here are 10 tips that adapt Strunk and White’s advice to blog writing (the first 8 are from Dean Rieck over on Copyblogger and is titled The Ultimate Blogger Writing Guide): Read More→

Scannable Blog Posts:
Is Your Web Content Worthy of a Once Over?

Business-Blogging-Content-MarketingIs your web content worthy of a once over? Do your readers find it attractive – that is, easily scannable and interesting? If not, you are missing opportunities to connect with your readers and make a lasting impression.

Last week I posted that quality web content is short, sweet, smart and funny. Here is a great example that I found over on, and I want to share it with you: Read More→