Hotel Seo – Digital Marketing Demystified Webinar

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Recently, TripAdvisor invited me to discuss basic Hotel SEO / SEM as a guest panelist on their “TripAdvisor Digital Marketing Demystified” webinar.

With respect to your hotel’s search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM), do you feel overwhelmed? Unfortunately, for the beginner, when it comes to improving your hotel’s rankings it can sometimes feel as though the world is against you.

(Special note: What follows are my slides on hotel SEO / SEM and a breakdown of the talking points. During the presentation I only had 10 MINUTES to discuss a very complex subject. It should be noted that SEO / SEM have an almost infinite depth to them and this discussion barely scratches the surface and is meant to be a very basic introduction.)

Hotel SEO – How Search Engines Work

There are some 60 Trillion individual pages on the web. And when your potential guests start researching properties for their next vacation or business trip, SEARCH engines are tasked with parsing incredible amounts of information so that they return the most relevant and pertinent listings for peoples’ queries.

search-engine-market-share

The graphic that you see above is the most recent information (that I could find) on the market share of various search engines that people use. If you consider the online activity of your guests, and the fact that you want them to be able to find you when researching their trip, you want to have a very good understanding of what platform your guests are using. (Note: Most likely it’s Google.)

As you can see in the graphic, as of April 2015 GOOGLE is still dominating with a little more than an 88% share of the market. Obviously a huge number, as such, the rest of this intro presentation focuses largely on Google.

Incredibly, Google handles some 40,000 searches per second or somewhere on the order of 4 billion searches per day! (Editor’s note: I found daily search stats that ranged from two billion to six billion.)

Search Engines can seem like mythical and confusing platforms for many hotel owners who might struggle to understand why their hotel’s website ranks where it does, and how they might go about gaining incremental improvement.

If you fall into this camp, you are not alone.

The question becomes then, when a potential guest searches for trip planning information, how does Google find web pages that match their query and determine the order of the search results?

hotel-seo

Googlebot – Google has a “web crawler” that is known as “GOOGLEBOT. ” The GOOGLEBOT is constantly crawling the trillions of pages on the web to determine new and updated pages that should be added to the Index and it accomplishes this by following links from page to page to page. So you want to ensure that your website is well structured and easily crawlable.

Index – GOOGLEBOT processes each of the pages it crawls and compiles them into a massive database called the Index. After Google has crawled and indexed your site it can then appear in the Search Engine Results Page (often shortened to the acronym SERP).

Results – When it comes to the search results, Google, of course, has a very specific and highly secretive algorithm that decides which pages are shown in which order.

Organic & Paid search – Google’s results page typically shows 7 to 10 links to sites which fit best with the keywords and phrases that your potential guests are searching.

  • Paid search – with most all searches you might see the first few results with a little yellow ad icon or some other kind of designation. That means people have paid to rank well and the price varies depending on competition for the keyword. Paid search is the domain of Search Engine Marketing (SEM).
  • Organic search – the other search results on the listings page are known as organic search results or non paid listings. Ranking well organically is the primary driver behind Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

Hotel SEO – Keywords

When you are thinking about SEO/SEM for your hotel, a critical component to understand is the concept of keywords. Keywords and phrases are the terms that your potential guests are typing into Google when researching their trip.

Having empathy for your audience during their travel shopping and research phase can help you to better understand what your guests are searching the internet for. You should be able to answer the following questions:

  • Who is your target market?
  • What is that market looking for in a hotel?
  • What activities does your “ideal” guest like to do?
  • What are the words and phrases that those people type into the search engines to find hotels that will suit their needs?

The example graphic below show us that the more specific you can get in your understanding of your guests, the better your sales funnel is going to be.

hotel-seooriginal image source: customerthink.com

One word phrase – one word “hotel” is going to be extremely competitive, difficult to rank for, and it’s incredibly broad.

Two to three word phrase – a few words such as, “Puerto Rico hotel”, begins to narrow your niche down a bit, but the higher converting phrases tend to get even more specific.

Longer phrase (also know as the “Longtail”) – something along the lines of “Puerto Rico hotel with yoga” really starts to capture a specific segment of the market and tend to convert better.

Another tip to keep in mind, having your primary keywords and phrases in the text throughout your website — in your description, on your pages, and in blog posts lets search engines know what your site is about! Google is good at a lot of things. But if you don’t have information on your site about what your hotel is – then it’s going to be awfully hard for search engines to know.

Hotel SEO – Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Search Engine Marketing is the promotion of websites and increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) primarily through paid advertising.

hotel-search-engine-marketing

In the graphic above, you can see the paid results highlighted. With most all Google searches you might see the first few results with a little yellow ad icon. That means people have paid to have their business rank well. If you create Google ads for your hotel you are charged on a cost per click basis every time a potential guest clicks the ad link. The price varies depending on competition for the keyword or phrase.

It’s important to note that the paid ads are ranked in the results by what is known as the “Quality Score“. Quality Score is determined every time your keyword matches a customer’s search. The components include the expected clickthrough rate, the ad relevance, and the landing page experience.

Hotel Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization — SEO — is the practice of increasing your rankings in the organic (non-paid) search results.  SEO is a component of Search Engine Marketing, and it should be noted that more than 75% of all clicks within search results are for organic versus paid links.

seo-ranking-factors

image source:  moz.com

When it comes to your hotel SEO and ranking better in the search results, over time it has gotten quite a bit more complex. The smaller graphic (in red) here shows the components that you had to be concerned with for SEO in 2004. According to Moz, it was pretty much links, keywords, getting crawled, and rankings and you could expect a pretty good spot in the search results.

However, now just eleven years on we have to think about design, press, localization, site speed, keywords, social, mobile and on and on…

But it’s important for you to not get overwhelmed and understand you can still be successful!

Hotel SEO – A quick example

As you work on your hotel’s SEO and SEM strategy, the Google keyword planner tool can give you lots of information.

hotel-seo-example

In the example “PUERTO RICO HOTELS” was entered. The results show us that people are searching for that term about 165,000 times per month and it’s competition is “HIGH”. If you wanted to bid on that phrase in Google Adwords it might cost around $3.15.

If you run an actual Google search for “PUERTO RICO HOTELS” you can see lots of ads and competition to rank highly.

hotel-seo-paid-listings

With all of the adds displaying before the organic listings, this show us that we might stand a better chance of ranking well if we drill down and get more specific about what our ideal guests are seeking.

As you can see, the search example below was for “PUERTO RICO HOTEL WITH YOGA”.

hotel-seo-organic-rankings

Notice, there are no ads and all of the listed results contain keyword “Yoga”! Additionally, if you see the results with the stars next to them, those hotels that have taken advantage of the SEO power of setting up a free Google+ business page. If you have not done this I highly recommend it.

Hotel SEO & SEM – Final Thoughts

hotel-seo-sem-thoughts

Some final thoughts for you to think about as you consider your hotel’s SEO and SEM strategy. In order to be successful with hotel SEO & SEM there are a tremendous amount of components and details that you need to understand.

Specifically, some of the facets that you want to think about would include the following.

  1. You need to have a deep understanding of your property and ideal guest.
  2. You want to focus on what you have control over.
  3. You want to maintain consistency.
  4. You want to keep track and measure what works.
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52 Business blog post ideas for you

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blog-post-ideasDo you find yourself lacking the time to come up with creative ideas for new content and blog posts? Here are 52 ideas to help get you through the rest of the year.

Fact: We all have the ability to be publishing companies now.

However, as business owners sometimes it can feel as though we’re just too busy to do anything else other than keeping customers and employees happy. Yet, now more than ever, it’s critical to be creating content that helps you reach potential clients.

Most businesses are beginning to realize that the power of blogging is NOT achieved by publishing content that promotes the hard sell of products and services. But rather, the most effective business blog post ideas are centered on helping to connect you and your potential & existing customers on a more human level that builds trust and (hopefully) leads to increased sales.

Blog Post Ideas

During the next year if you find yourself getting stuck creatively, here are 52 content and blog post ideas for you.

  1. Answer three of the most commonly asked questions that customers have about your service or product.
  2. Did you come from a completely different field (like a heart surgeon) to pursue a business passion (like opening a bakery)? What was the journey like?
  3. A day in the life post. What is a typical day, a week, or even a month like at your business?
  4. Who are your customers? Conduct a brief interview with some customers or clients. (Have you seen the success of Humans of New York?!)
  5. What have you done in your life that makes you unique, and how does that translate over to your business and serving customers?
  6. What are the tools of your trade? For example, are you using a piece of software that makes your day easier and perhaps it could help your customers?
  7. Most business owners did not get where they are at on their own — who has inspired or mentored you?
  8. Why did you choose your business location? (Or if your business is online what are some of your favorite spots to work from?)
  9. Have you done something astronomical, such as completing the Hawaii Ironman or climbing Mount Everest? Your clients would love to hear about it…
  10. What allowed you to move beyond fear and pursue business ownership?
  11. How is the reality of running a business different from what you expected?
  12. Interview an industry leader in your business niche.
  13. Do a photo walking tour of your neighborhood.
  14. How did you manage to start your business? (You might focus on practical points such as securing financing, required permits, and so on.)
  15. What causes do you care about? How has your business supported the community or your favorite charity
  16. Where have you visited in your travels? How are the places different?
  17. Do you sell a product (or deliver a service) that’s technically complicated? Boil down a critical but difficult-to understand concept in a resource post.
  18. Define your customer service philosophy in a short manifesto. (Even better if you include real life examples that display your remarkable customer care.)
  19. Conduct a photo or video walking tour of your business.
  20. Highlight the top five or ten blogs in your industry.
  21. How is your business or service conducted in other cultures? For example, are there any differences between carpet cleaners (or whatever your venture is) in New York City and London?
  22. What are the challenges you face on a daily basis?
  23. Write a humorous post about something that occurred at your business. (Remember to change names to protect the innocent.)
  24. Create a compelling challenge for a free giveaway.
  25. Highlight a new product or service that’s proving helpful to customers.
  26. A simple, heartfelt post, on why you love doing what you do.
  27. Highlight some monthly specials, promotions, or clearance items. (Note: use this type of post sparingly!)
  28. Draft a helpful post or tutorial specifically to help others in your industry.
  29. Define the origins and shipping procedure of your product. How did that coffee get to your café? Where is it grown?
  30. Explain the requirements of entry into your line of business. What type of training is required to be a web designer? Do you need certain skills to run a hotel?
  31. What are the top ten mistakes you’ve made while running your venture?
  32. What is your personal history and what are your qualifications?
  33. Why are you located where you are?
  34. What are ten must-have items in your business?
  35. Provide the most convenient routes to get to your business and perhaps list any unique or historic landmarks around you.
  36. Highlight a special customer.
  37. Feature any eco/enviro-friendly products or infrastructure that you have (such as solar panels, or low-flow, high-volume shower heads).
  38. Comparison post – e.g., if you own a restaurant, what’s the most popular dish like when it’s prepared the standard way and/or for someone who is gluten intolerant? Or why might customers want one technology over another?
  39. Describe any improvements or upgrades you have made to your business.
  40. Create a tutorial post specific to your industry, which might be a trivial task for you but could really help the readers (it might be programming an iPhone, or how to make the perfect pizza crust).
  41. What do you do during your time off?
  42. Does your family have a history in the business? For example, was your shoe store, marketing firm, or bike shop started by your grandfather?
  43. Post a survey seeking input from your customers about how you can improve their customer experience.
  44. Write a personal post and invite your customers to comment or provide their thoughts.
  45. Do a real-life product review where you use one of your services or business items for a week and report back on your findings.
  46. Highlight the businesses around you that you support.
  47. Thank every single person who has helped you along your way.
  48. Have an employee do a written or visual diary of what their day is like.
  49. Respond to a critic head-on. Don’t be confrontational, but explain your point of view in a professional manner. For example, if you’ve had a customer service issue, explain what you are doing to remedy the situation.
  50. Surprise an unsuspecting customer/client/guest with an amazing experience — like a gift certificate for a fine meal, a massage, or a shopping spree — and write about the lucky winner and how you went about choosing who would receive the gift.
  51. Ask your customers to take some photos or video of your business and post them. (Making sure to give credit to the photographers.)
  52. If you made it this far, write a year in review post highlighting your successes, failures, and plans for the future.

Whether you post once a month, once a week, or once a day hopefully you found this “content cushion” of blog post ideas helpful! If you have further thoughts or input, I’d love to connect with you on Twitter @mark_hayward or LinkedIn.

image source: Flickr/littlenelly

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Launching today: ProBlogger’s Guide to Blogging for Your Business

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problogger-guideToday I am overjoyed to announce that Darren Rowse, of ProBlogger.net, and I are launching the ProBlogger’s Guide to Blogging for Your Business.

A little over four years ago I purchased a dormant business in the Caribbean with no customers, no cash flow, and no Internet presence. Without blogging and the possibilities that it provided me to educate my customers, to share my story, to rank well in search engines, and to promote my venture there is a good chance that my business would have failed and would not exist today.

Nowadays, with the advent of many forms of social media, more possibilities exist today than ever before for you to share your business’s story with the world, engage your customers, and interact with donors. However, blogging is the cornerstone from which your online presence should be constructed.

ProBlogger’s Guide to Blogging for Your Business is a 143 page step-by-step guide that’s targeted for business owners, nonprofit leaders/managers, and individuals who want to use blogging as a base to develop a comprehensive social media footprint and online presence. (Note: it is NOT a make money blogging book!)

The guide is like having your own personal blog coach and was written from the bottom up with the following question in mind:

How can our knowledge and what we’ve learned about blogging help to remove the technical barriers to entry and content creation frustration that so many newbies and would be business bloggers struggle with?

Many business owners plan to include a blog as part of their marketing strategy but soon find themselves asking, “Where do you start?”

With ProBlogger’s Guide to Blogging for Your Business all of the guesswork has been removed. The guide will help you create an online presence for your business that:

–       reaches the right people

–       builds your customer base

–       increases your profile and influence

–       is easy to set up, manage, and build upon

The step-by-step advice will save you hours of time—and endless frustration.

–       set up a WordPress blog … without any technical know-how

–       conduct targeted keyword research … even if you’ve never done it before

–       understand your online competition … whether they’re next door, or on the next continent

–       build a strong social media footprint … even if you don’t know the first thing about finding “followers”

–       set a successful business blogging strategy … no matter what your product or market

–       write blog posts that educate, engage, and build trust

What’s in this book?

Over 12 simple, practical chapters, I distill my experience as a bricks-and-mortar business owner who built my clientele using simple, cost-effective online methods.

1.     Defining blogging and how it will benefit you

2.     Defining your goals

3.     Getting started with blogging

4.     Deciding on and registering a domain name

5.     Installing WordPress

6.     Intro to WordPress plugins

7.     Developing a content strategy and editorial calendar

8.     Developing content (including 52 blog post ideas) and fighting blogging frustration

9.     Publishing your first blog post

10. Finding readers and traffic for your blog

11. Optimizing Flickr and YouTube for your blog’s online presence

12. Creating your social media footprint and measuring your blogging ROI

Practical tasks at the end of each chapter let you implement the strategy in a way that suits your business, and your customers.

Who’s this book for?

Small to medium business owners and not-for-profits who don’t have an online presence will find this book an invaluable asset. Also, it’s perfect for you if you have tried blogging before only to give up after a week or two.

Whether your business is online or off, the advice in the guide will fast-track your development of an online presence that’s perfectly integrated with your brand, and reaches the right audience.

As a business owner myself, the book assumes readers are:

  • time-poor: you don’t have time for guesswork and dead-ends
  • action-oriented: you want to do, not read
  • focused: you understand that building a business blog will take time
  • astute: you’re not looking for get-rich-quick gimmicks
  • human: you don’t want to feel overwhelmed of frustrated
  • determined: you need to succeed

Money-back guarantee

If you’re not satisfied with ProBlogger’s Guide to Blogging for Your Business after 30 days, Darren is offering a full money back guarantee. That’s how confident we both are that this is a resource that will help you build a solid, successful online presence for your business.

Download your copy now

Your online customers are waiting.

Download your copy of ProBlogger’s Guide to Blogging for Your Business now and start reaching more clients immediately.

For jut $49.95, you can secure your business’s online future. It’s an investment that will benefit your business for years to come.

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How do you plan your week?

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Time Flies. When you plan your week do you schedule in time for blogging and social media?

For many struggling, overworked, and frazzled business owners scheduling their week doesn’t necessarily include making time for  blogging or social media. Rather, it’s done on an ad hoc basis.

Your success might vary, but for my three blogs mark-hayward.com, Culebrablog.com, and the Palmetto Guesthouse Blog I try to dedicate about eight hours each week to content creation.

Typically, I tend to work best in batches and fit in blogging around cleaning rooms, helping guests, and all the other normal “just living” stuff that we do.

Many of my blog post ideas for mark-hayward.com are derived by listening and noticing when someone is struggling with blogging or social media for their business. For me, I find it easiest to think of titles first and then I create a post around them and fortunately the titles usually come to me when I am out running or riding my bike.

When it comes to my business blogs, Culebrablog.com and the Palmetto Guesthouse blog, they are a little different. I still always want to provide some type of helpful information but when creating posts I tend to focus more on keywords and phrases that potential visitors to the island might be searching for.

In an attempt to show you what I do for my week’s plan, here’s my schedule for today, Sunday May 29. The content creation included drafting five posts for the Palmetto Guesthouse, five for Culebrablog, and three for mark-hayward.com.

Palmetto Guesthouse posts

The Palmetto posts that I am writing for the upcoming week are based on  some of the frequently asked questions that we get, which if you aren’t aware, is an extremely convenient way to come up with blog content. The following are the titles and subsequent posts that I created.

  • Do you serve breakfast?
  • Should I bring a suit and tie to Culebra?
  • Does the Culebra and Fajardo ferry get crowded?
  • Culebra bike rental
  • Air Flamenco price update

Culebrablog posts

The content on Culebrablog tends to be focused on photos that we take around the island and they can be time intensive if I also need to upload, tag, and describe each picture on Flickr. As a result of today’s work, here are the five posts I have loaded and ready to publish over the next week or so.

  • Hello from Culebra!
  • Frangipani and Clouds on Culebra Island
  • Zoni Beach Looking East
  • Zoni Beach Palm
  • Zoni Beach & Cayo Norte View

Mark-hayward.com posts

The posts for this site always include more text than the other two blogs and they take up the majority of my time. However, nothing pleases me more than thinking that there is a frustrated business owner out there and perhaps one of my posts can help her achieve a blogging or social media goal. This weeks posts are as follows:

  • How do you plan your week?
  • Ten reasons why you should write your resignation letter today!
  • Evolution of a non-writer: How I was chosen to write a ProBlogger Guide

Over to you. How do you plan your blogging and social media week?

(Note: If you haven’t done so yet, don’t forget to download the free blog motivation pdf Possibility Engine and make sure you sign up to  get the email updates.)

image source: Starmaniack*

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Whose permission are you waiting for?

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If we had told you six or seven years ago that we were going to connect directly with a major telecoms thought leader via 140 character messages and work with him to bring a major conference to a U.S. Territory in the Caribbean you’d have laughed in our face.

Or, if we stated that we were going to bypass the public relations rep of a major Hollywood actress and go direct to her to assist us in our efforts to rescue stray animals on a tiny island that nobody has ever heard of, you would have nodded your head politely and walked away and said those people are passionate but I think they have a screw or two loose.

But stories such as the above, and so much, much more are happening every day!

permission

Think about the possibilities for a moment, you don’t need permission from anyone except yourself if you decide you want to develop a loyal online following and share a message globally, or start a small nonprofit, or if you want and create a business and work from home.

The tools are all there at your disposal and just waiting to be used. That’s what the Possibility Engine is about. YOU are now the brand manager, chief storyteller, and vice president of marketing for your life, your small business, or your nonprofit.

Our goal with the Possibility Engine is simple: for thirty days we are going to give you one blogging related point and one illustration to think about and to motivate you each day. We hope to get YOU to take action. In essence, we want you to get your blogging (or social media) ass in gear and get working!

If you missed any of the links above, download it NOW! Possibility Engine

(Note: The Possibility Engine is a creative collaboration between Mark Hayward (@mark_hayward) and Joaquín R. Kierce (@jrkierce) and the ebook design and layout was done by Jonathan Woodward of Shine & Glue. If what we are trying to do resonates with you we would be grateful if you’d share it on Twitter or Facebook. Oh yeah, over the next couple of weeks we’ll be delving into each page to further inspire you, so don’t miss one day, get the email updates.)

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Possibility Engine: A Mini-Starter Kit to Get Your Blogging Ass in Gear

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Today. Right now. YOU have the power and the control to spread your message, share your story, and connect with more people than ever before.

  • Do you want to grow a small online business and develop a base of passionate fans so that you can be free from the constraints of a job that you don’t really like?
  • Are you eager to get your message out about orphans in Darfur?
  • Do you want to educate your customers and provide them with helpful information?

All of the above examples, plus many more possibilities are available to you right now. It’s not easy and it requires a tremendous amount of focus and work, but it can be done.

blog-motivation

When it comes to blogging (and using social media) for business, or for a nonprofit, or even as an individual there’s this niggling and annoying little voice inside your head that says – – “you can’t, you shouldn’t and you won’t.” Or there’s always a low hanging excuse available as the scapegoat – not enough time, nobody reads it anyway, what impact am I having, etc.

And strangely enough, most of the time we listen. We let what Seth Godin calls “the Lizard Brain” and what Steven Pressfield calls “The Resistance” win and the only action we consciously take is no action at all.

Today we are launching the Possibility Engine, which is a free ebook focused and directed at YOU, the struggling, overworked, and frazzled business owners, nonprofit workers and any interested individuals who’ve wanted to start blogging but just haven’t taken the initiative. It’s also for those who’ve started in social media and blogging and found themselves giving up when results weren’t immediate.

possibility-engine-who-for

Our goal with the Possibility Engine is simple: for thirty days we are going to give you one blogging related point and one illustration to think about and to  motivate you each day.  We hope to get YOU to take action. In essence, we want you to get your blogging ass in gear and get working!

If you missed any of the links above, download it NOW! Possibility Engine

(Note: The Possibility Engine is a creative collaboration between Mark Hayward (@mark_hayward) and Joaquín R. Kierce (@jrkierce) and the ebook design and layout was done by Jonathan Woodward of Shine & Glue.  If what we are trying to do resonates with you we would be grateful if you’d share it on Twitter or Facebook. Oh yeah, over the next couple of weeks we’ll be delving into each page to further inspire you, so don’t miss one day, get the email updates.)

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Why patience is the secret sauce to your blogging success

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blog-frustrationBlogging is a funny animal. You ever find yourself aimlessly hitting the refresh button on your feedburner account or checking backlinks and comments, only to be disheartened and frustrated when there are none? Sometimes you need to give yourself a break  and realize that you are starting from nothing.

You wouldn’t expect to run a marathon during you first week of running, would you?

Many would be bloggers publish one post, get super excited about all of the possibilities and then a week later they are done. In fact most are beyond done, they are frustrated and disillusioned and even worse, they now hate blogging.

The real secret to blogging success is…PATIENCE.

Yes, providing valuable content to your readers is extremely important, but the hidden gem (that’s really not that hidden) is having the patience and fortitude to stick it out, whether that be six months, a year, or even longer. In essence, proving your value and your worth over time and gaining the trust of your would be readers.

I’m sure you know this, but nothing in the blogging or social media realm happens without first laying a proper foundation, which comes with one blog post, one Google search, and one satisfied customer at a time. But, remember, trust is tough to gain and easily lost, and people might come to your blog once and never come back. (You have to provide them with a reason to come back and make your blog sticky.)

The foundation of content that you create should be based on the goals that you want to achieve and the benchmarks you’ve identified to indicate progress. Laying the foundation properly, in turn, helps to grow your reputation, aids you in your efforts of developing trust, and works to attract an audience to your blog.

Most of us are busy and extended beyond belief, so starting a blog (for some people) means that you just get online and type away without giving it much forethought. However, if you find yourself struggling or when you start out blogging, why not try and work backwards from your goals to determine what you hope to achieve. For example, do you want 1,000 subscribers? Do you want to earn $50 a day? Or do you want to educate people on the world’s only poisonous bird?

Simple, right? But so many don’t undertake this necessary step.

With your blogging or even with your social media efforts, and keeping patience and foundation building in mind, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What do you really want to accomplish with your blog?
  • How long are you willing to stick with blogging in order to achieve your goals? (One month, six months, a year?)
  • What are your measurable benchmarks going to be? (Will it be how often you post and number of readers attracted, earning your first customer, etc.)

Now, with realistic expectations in mind, ask yourself do you the having patience, and the willingness to put in the time and do the hard work, that is required to create the foundation (remember, one brick at a time!) and to not throw your hands up in frustration after the first or second week?

What do you think? Besides content, what do you consider the most important ingredient for blogging success?

(Note, if you find that you frequently get annoyed with blogging or sometimes need a motivational reminder, then stay tuned or sign up for email updates because my friend Joaquin and I have something special & FREE coming next week, which should help you.)

 

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7 Blog Apps to Ease Your Blogging Frustration

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We get that you don’t have time to blog and it can be especially difficult if you’re just learning how to blog for business, or a nonprofit, or even as an individual. Blogging can take up the better part of your day and leave you feeling frustrated, disenchanted, and as though you didn’t accomplish anything. Sometimes it feels easier to just give up, even though you really wanted to post something…

The seven recommended blog apps below are meant to help you with your blogging, the creation of your overall online presence, and your frustration.

1. WordPress App { http://ios.wordpress.org/ and http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wordpress/id335703880?mt=8}

You say you don’t have the time to time to sit down and write posts at your computer. Well that’s okay, with the WP blog app you can compose posts, upload pictures, put in links and publish all while you are standing in line for your morning no fat-halfcalf-soy-latte.

wordpress-app

(Note: Posterous and Tumblr also have iPhone apps!)

2. Flickr App {http://www.flickr.com/services/apps/72157621626747187/ and http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/flickr/id328407587?mt=8}

If you’ve been blogging for a while then you know that uploading well tagged, described, and titled photos should most certainly be a part of your work to create a comprehensive web presence. The Flickr blog app makes it seamless and easy to publish your photos.

flickr-app

3. Google Mobile (YouTube) App {Native to iPhone & http://www.google.com/mobile/youtube/}

Just like with Flickr, you need to be uploading video that tells your business or nonprofit story and works to gain the trust of potential customers and donors. Google prefers that you go to their mobile YouTube site, as opposed to using the iPhone app, but for now I still prefer to use the app.

youtube-app

4. Evernote {http://www.evernote.com/about/download/iphone/ & http://itunes.apple.com/app/evernote/id281796108?mt=8

Trying to remember everything can be difficult! According to the Evernote website, “Chances are, if you can see it or think of it, Evernote can help you remember it.” (Cost – one month $4.99)

evernote-app

5. Dropbox {https://www.dropbox.com/iphoneapp & http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dropbox/id327630330?mt=8}

I love, Love, LOVE using Dropbox to backup files and my list of blog post ideas, etc. It’s easy, intuitive, and doesn’t crash or bork leaving you to wonder if you’ve lost your work forever.

dropbox-app

6. Instapaper http://www.instapaper.com/iphone & http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/instapaper/id288545208?mt=8

Blogging can sometimes require a lot of research and reading on your niche subject. Instapaper does just as the title implies, it’s a simple tool to save web pages for reading later. One of the great things about Instapaper is that you don’t need an internet connection to read the articles and posts that you’ve bookmarked, just save them and read ‘em later. (Cost $4.99)

instapaper

7. Dragon Dictation {http://www.dragonmobileapps.com/apple/dictation.html & http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dragon-dictation/id341446764?mt=8}

If you struggle with writer’s block, or if you just prefer to “talk out” your posts then Dragon Dictation blog app can type for you while you talk.

dragon-app

BONUS!! Pandora {http://www.pandora.com/on-the-iphone & http://itunes.apple.com/app/pandora-radio/id284035177?mt=8}

Pandora is like having control of your own (free) personalized radio station and it’s just about the greatest invention ever. The iPhone app provides you with music to keep you focused and to help block out the world around you so you’re less likely to procrastinate and NOT blog.

pandora-app

If you find that you frequently get frustrated with blogging or sometimes need a motivational reminder, then stay tuned or sign up for email updates because my friend Joaquin and I have something special coming next week, which should help you.

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