The late, great Zig Ziglar said it best:
“..you get what you want, when you help enough other people get what they want..”
I seriously suggest that you put that quote somewhere where you will see it every day, Internalise it, believe it and follow through on it.
We can change the world, it’s just that we might not have the time!
But, as they say,
“the journey of a thousand miles, starts with the first step..”
In my first e-book “15 Secrets to Success in MLM” I include a chapter on helping and giving. This is the essence of every success networking business, because you only make money from your downline when they make money. Here is what I said about generosity of spirit…:
Why is this?
It is because they have long ago passed the point of worrying about themselves and are now at the point of ensuring that all the people in the network below them have the same opportunity to succeed that they enjoyed. These are people who appreciate the opportunity that was handed to them and who are determined to serve those who come after them to keep the dream alive
Get out there into the marketplace, put as many people as you can on your list and when you speak to them, don’t make it about you, but make it about them. Share the opportunity at every opportunity.
Let people know that you have a better way. Let them know that you are there for them at every step of the way. Let them know that you understand their personality type and can work with them in converting prospects into leaders in their organisation.
Forget about You and You will succeed
The same principles apply to your blogging career – giving.
So think about it, you sign up a whole bunch of people, who may or may not know much about the blog or business that they are getting into. You have put a lot of physical, emotional and mental energy into that exercise – does it make sense to work hard FOR them? WITH them? Or do you just sit back and hope for the best? That would be suicidal wouldn’t it, but we do see it time and time again.
No, what makes sense is to (1) help them by teaching them enough to (2) help others get started. If everybody in the network is drilling down and helping others get the confidence to start and keep going we build a fantastic, enduring organisation.
On the other hand, if everyone is standing back, waiting for everyone else to do something, guess what will happen to that organisation?
It’s the same in blogging, even though you are not trying to build a network or a matrix. You are working hard, though, to build a list of people who will engage with you, come back again and again, leave comments on your pages, and even buy your own products or your affiliate products.
How do we do that?
First and foremost, make it easy for them to find you – great SEO techniques are necessary for them to come to your site in the first place so OPTIMISE YOUR SITE FOR SEO.
You can try give-aways and polls and competitions, but they are not the glue that holds it all together. They are bonuses, but they are transient. Even then, those giveaways have to have some value or they are not worth giving away.
The answer is, you have to hold them in – and the only way to do that is to provide GREAT CONTENT.
What is GREAT CONTENT?
It is material that you write or curate on your blog (or a guest writes or curates) that is:
E. Helpful, and
F. Useful to enough people.
Clearly, if you can’t hold the interest of your audience, you may not be focussed enough on your specific goals of what you want your blog to be.
The very first way to capture interest is in the title of your Blog. Don’t just give it any old name. “How To’s” are not sexy. You need to come up with a catchy phrase that is keyword oriented. For that, go to a Keyword Tool and pop in a couple of phrases and see what comes up. Take the top five or ten and Google them and see what articles you find. There is no copyright in a title, so you might want to borrow someone else’s and make a small tweak.
Here is some advice from the great blogger, Neil Patel:-
Headlines with facts and data tend to get shared well within the B2B community.
Keep them short and sweet, or else your click-through rate will decrease.
The headline is the most important part of a blog post.
If your headlines are too long, they will get cut off within Google’s search results. Try to keep them to fewer than 65 characters.
Don’t assume you know what your readers want. Make sure you A/B test your blogging headlines.
Try to think what people would search for to find your blog post on Google. If possible, incorporate those words and phrases within your headlines.
Using negative words within headlines is a great way to increase your click-through rates.
If you use numbers within your headlines, use odd numbers — they tend to get more clicks.
People scan headlines and tend to look only at the first 3 and last 3 words within the headline.
Try to address the readers within the headline.
Make sure your headline is clear. If people don’t know what they are reading, they will bounce off.
If you aren’t sure how to write great headlines, start by using these formulas.
Don’t try to click-bait your readers. If you deceive them, you will lose their trust.
Evoke curiosity when possible. This also tends to help with Facebook shares.
Leveraging emotions within headlines is a great way to get more people to read your blog post.
Use magazines for inspiration. Their writers tend to know how to write popular headlines.
When you’re stuck, you can always use a headline generator. It’s not the be-all and end-all tool, but it will help you get started.
Make sure your headline is short enough to fit within a tweet
The Body of the Blog
Again, be mindful of keywords, but don’t let them rule you. If you try to stuff keywords all through the prose, you will lose yourself, and the search engines might punish you.
Be yourself! The audience wants to follow you. They came to your site because you have something worthwhile to say, in their eyes, so don’t change YOU.. and on that subject, one of the best ways to personalise is to use “you” and “I” throughout the blog.
Keep your paragraphs short and punchy. Use sub-headings and make sure that your thoughts are organised so that the prose flows.
· Overuse Exclamation marks – it just makes it look like you are shouting!!!
· Write about things that you are not passionate about
· Have long sentences and long paragraphs
· Use bad punctuation. If in doubt, shorten your sentences, and minimise the need for punctuation marks.
· Use italics and bolds, bullets and numbers,
· Use the first person’
· Tell stories, use analogies
· Use block quotes
· Spell check regularly
Read and re-read, insert, delete, amend, change, try new phrases – keep editing until you are 100% satisfied that you can’t do any better; my first e-book started life as a short blog post and grew from there;
If you are not satisfied with your work, put it away, make a coffee, clear your head, go for a walk – but come back to it later on. Sleep on it.
Goes without saying. Are you a thought leader? An influencer? Or do you just want to be a run of the mill follower?
Don’t forget your site visitors are not only looking to be entertained, they are looking to be informed and in a way that they have not seen before. They saw something in your writing that they liked, so analyse what that is, and how you can serve them with great, original thought.
Can you be responsible for someone’s “lightbulb moment”? Would that be some sort of achievement?
The best time to write is when you have had a great thought. Even if you only just get the thought down on paper, you can come back and improve on it later – let it flow, and the words will come.
There many ways to inform. Your own words, other peoples words (properly attributed), pictures, infographics, great videos, slide presentations, audio clips are just a few ways.
Have you heard of Microsoft’s new app – SWAY? – Definitely worth exploring.
Good information comes from being well-informed. A trite statement, yes, but it simply means that there is no excuse for not checking your information, or doing a little extra research to add to what you already want to say.
Google is always your friend – Wikipedia is pretty good, too, so always check your facts and do some background research to provide the colour and authenticity that your article may need.
Don’t just wing it, unless you really are a leader in your field.
First, find your niche and stick to it – give of yourself and put your personality into it and people will relate – not everyone, but enough for you to get that list built.
If you are blogging about a subject where you are learning as you go, it will show.
Put your own knowledge and personality behind the words. Write them from the heart, even if the first draft is stiff and stilted, just keep coming back to it, until it sounds like YOU.
Use anecdotes (preferably your own). Talk about recent experiences, talk about your family, your kids, your pets. You don’t have to write whole articles about them, but weave them into the storyline here and there.
There is a rule in life about conversation – in the flesh, the person who spends all the time talking about themselves is usually seen as a bore! It is the opposite in blogging, because the audience wants to hear from you, about you and relate to you – ……, the sheer weight of numbers of people surfing the net should mean that there will be plenty out there who will relate to you and your content.
Try to challenge and stimulate your audience. Pose questions and see where that leads.
Have a good call to action in every post, even if it is just a finishing line, such as “what does everybody think?” That one question might be responsible for engaging people who would not otherwise bother.
Of course, if you ask people what they think, be prepared to hear it – you may not always like it or agree with it, but it’s your blog and you can have the final word.
However, if you blog about something very obscure, don’t expect quick success.
This is where the article started. Most of your loyal fan base want some form of help, ranging from the complete novice, just starting out who wants to suck up all the information, to those well-established on their journey, looking for a “lightbulb moment” through to those who may be at your level, just looking for new ideas, or just someone to argue with.
Whatever the need, you need to try and meet it. Like the man said “help enough others, and you help yourself”.
Being Useful to Enough People
This goes without saying. If you want to keep building the list, you have to keep being original, useful and interesting. You want subscribers to find you by all sorts of means, including word of mouth recommendations from others.
Don’t think that you always have to write a perfect article. At the heart of your success will be the Body of Work that you produce over time.
When you first start out, you will have few or no followers, nobody commenting on your posts, and you might wonder why. If you walk into a candy shop and the box on top of the counter or the jar only has one or two bars in it, it may look lonely and forlorn and you are subliminally not inclined to buy it. By comparison, if the box or the jar is almost overflowing with abundance, that same piece of candy looks more inviting.
It’s the same with your blog posts. Take the time while you are starting out to produce a set number of articles or posts before you even begin to worry or panic about followers.
Don’t get overly worried about your SEO – that should only take minutes per day. Don’t be too concerned about A/B testing, when you have no audience to test.
Don’t be too concerned with perfection – until you have an audience you don’t really have a voice, because you find that when you appreciate what your followers want.
So, just get amongst it – publish great stuff and be prepared to evolve.
Until next time …Let me know what you think. Is Blogging Just About Helping?
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