Thursday, August 16, 2012

5 Things to Consider Before Dismantling a Blog

Think blogging is taking up too much of your time?

Worried no one reads your blog?

What happens if you haven't updated your blog in months? Do you feel like you may as well take it down?

Does this sound familiar? 

If it does, you're not alone. But before you make any drastic decisions, rethink your intention.

I recently spoke with an author friend, who shall remain nameless, who decided to resume blogging after she’d taken the blog down. A decision (dismantling the blog) that she felt had been a HUGE mistake.  

So with my upcoming presentation on Blogging Basics drawing near on October 6th at the Austin SCBWI Digital Symposium II, I wanted to give you a prelude of some of the things I’ll be discussing and leave you with five things to consider before dismantling a blog.

  1. Loss of TRAFFIC. Blogs more often than not drive traffic to your website. My author friend found this out first hand. With the blog gone, the traffic to the website ground to a screeching halt.
  2. Loss of RELATIONSHIPS. No doubt you have many links to authors, illustrators, industry professionals included in your blogroll and they have links to your blog. When you dismantle your blog the links are broken. That means when people click on those links, they will receive an error message because your blog no longer exists. Those links are ties to people. To information. And it’s like shredding a HUGE address book.  People can still find you, but why make it harder for them to do so. An extra click. An extra search. Extra time that they’ll have to spend to find you. Plus, you need to recreate all those Web addresses that were stored on your blog. Sounds like a lot of work, doesn’t it?
  3. Loss of MARKETING. An ability to communicate, connect and network with like-minded people and reach your audience. When your book is published your blog serves as a tool to create virtual buzz and publishers rely heavily on authors’ skills to market themselves. Publishing marketing budgets are shrinking and authors need to be their own advocate and publicist. Your blog is an inexpensive way to reach people and market your book.
  4. Loss of REVENUE. Pretty self-explanatory, right? You never know who is going to find your blog and purchase your book based on the content you're writing. Many times, I’ve bought a book after reading an emotional and moving blog post or an articulated and informative post on craft. Don’t limit yourself. Keep doors open to opportunities. Paid speaking gigs can also materialize through contact with people through your blog. As well as publishing contracts for that next book. Or debut!
  5. And lastly, loss of AUTHORITY. When you want to guest blog for other writers or industry blogs, they'll peruse what you've written on your blog. Your blog serves as a resume. A resource and sample of your skills and voice. But if your blog isn't there, you'll lose credibility and authority within your niche and/or market place. It'll make it 5x harder to get those guest post gigs.
In closing, I’d like to encourage you:
  • Don't give up.
  • Don't walk away.
  • Do write 3 - 4 blog posts.
  • Make time in your busy schedule to craft posts on topics you're passionate about and whenever possible tie it to what you're writing and creating.
  • Consider pitching ideas to guest blog for other writers or industry professionals on their blogs. Good content is always welcome. Be professional and courteous. 
  • Join me at the Digital Symposium II, where you’ll find support for your blogging woes and eleven experts will be on hand to equip you with skills as it relates to book trailers, tweeting, photoshopping, websites, YouTube, social media and so much more. Register  HERE.

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