by Madeline Van Tassel | Featured Contributor
When you’re a blogger, everyday is a hustle. You always need more hours (and caffeine) in the day to to write, edit, photograph, publish, pitch, promote, pin, tweet, analyze… the list goes on and on.
With everything that comes with blogging, how can you be smarter, more efficient, and more strategic? Easy: do yourself a favor and give your readers what they want.
Huh? But I want to write about [insert your current favorite fashion trend/recipe/craft]!
I hear ya, but is that trend/recipe/craft what your readers want to read about right now? If you can anticipate what might interest your readers – as opposed to running with a random blog post idea that came to you in the shower that morning – you’re guaranteed to see more clicks and more conversions. Timing is everything when it comes to your content.
There are two ways to figure out what your readers want:
1) Ask yourself: what content are my readers looking for on this particular day/week/month?
Feed into that demand! Give them exactly what they’re looking for. Find inspiration in the change in seasons, holidays, current events, pop culture, or the latest industry trends. For example, plan a blog post about those “it” booties at the beginning of winter when women are actively researching and shopping – not in the middle of winter when everyone has already bought a pair or decided to pass on that trend. Or maybe you’re considering a Valentine’s Day gift guide post. Publish it early enough so you can capture all that search demand (I’m pretty sure men thank Google everyday for answers to life’s tough questions, like what to buy their wife for Valentine’s Day). If you post your gift guide at the last-minute, you’ll miss all that traffic mojo!
2) Look at your analytics: what are your tops pages on this particular day/week/month?
That’ll show you what content is resonating on your site, and it can help inspire a new post that you know your readers are hungry for. Never fail, my post about what to wear to a bridal shower is consistently my most popular post. In fact, anything wedding-related performs strongly on my blog. I write a budget style blog, not a wedding blog!… so while I’m not going to blog about weddings 24/7, I know that this is a solid topic to add to my editorial calendar every couple months. Know your blog’s popular topics and find ways to capitalize on that knowledge.
It’s easy to veer off course with your content — it’s your blog so you want to write about what inspires you. Trust me, I get it. But it is possible to stay true to your voice while still being strategic and thoughtful about giving your readers what they want. Not only will they be satisfied but they’ll want to come back for more. Huzzah! Suddenly you have yourself a loyal and growing readership.
[image © Madeline Van Tassel/Style Me Thrifty]
Madeline Van Tassel – Blogging Expert – Alexandria, VA
Madeline Van Tassel is the founder and author of the budget style blog, Style Me Thrifty. After years of politely telling her family and friends how to dress (e.g. “Never, ever wear jeans to a bridal shower!”), she decided to combine her love of fashion, writing, and overall thriftiness by launching Style Me Thrifty in March 2011. In addition to her fashion blog, Madeline has also made a career out of blogging by running the blog of one of the largest nonprofit organizations. With limited hours in the workday, and even less in the evenings, Madeline has mastered the art of blogging smarter, not harder.
When Madeline’s not writing, playing around in WordPress, shopping, or tweeting, she can be found enjoying the newlywed life with her supportive husband and their cat Bandit.