Last week I missed a blog entry. I think this is the first or second time in over a year. However long it’s been, the streak is over.
It was just one of those things. I was deep into other work, including ghost-blogging for clients so THEY wouldn’t have to miss their regularly scheduled posts, when I turned my weary eyes to my blog stockpile and saw — nothing. The cupboard was bare. I had nothing to post.
Of course I could’ve whipped up an article quickly; professional writers are pretty good at that sort of thing. Or I could’ve just posted the following week as if nothing had happened (okay, technically “nothing” is exactly what happened, but you know what I mean), whistling to myself and avoiding eye contact with studied nonchalance. “Last week? Huh? By the way, here’s this week’s article.”
But I’m doing neither of those things. I blew it. I dropped a blog post. And it’s significant, because it shows that anyone can get behind the 8-ball on blogging, even those of us who should know better and are in the business of keeping others from making that very same mistake.
What’s the big deal? First of all, each blog post represents fresh content. Google loves fresh content. Additionally, every post you publish gives you something new to link to from your various social networks, forums, of other online hangouts. More links on heavily-traveled websites equals more inbound traffic to your site. So with every blog post we skip, we’re blowing off potential new readers.
Second, an irregular blog won’t sustain a regular audience. I know people — business owners, yet — who blog maybe once every four months, twice a year, or at crazy random increments. They can’t have a regular readership, because there’s nothing regular to read — how can the target audience possibly guess when the next post will come out? They can’t, so they don’t try. That blog becomes invisible. Regular readership comes from regular posts — once a day, once a week, once a month, whatever. You have to condition your audience to come back for more, and that includes their knowing when to expect more.
So today I’m working on my blog stockpile. Hopefully you’re doing the same, or you have a writer who offers regular ghost-blogging services to keep you in articles. If your website serves as a virtual stock-ticker or provides other kinds of up-to-the-minute news, then your blogs may have to come more frequently. But a stockpile of solid, timeless articles will help ensure that you never have to feel this kind of embarrassment.
So do as I say, not as I do.