Monday, November 12, 2007

Debbie Weil on Business and Professional Blogging

To continue with sharing the excellent advice I picked up at last week’s Brand You World international branding summit, here are some tips on writing an effective business blog from Debbie Weil, author of The Corporate Blogging Book. I might add that these tips are also relevant for writing your own professional blog for career advancement and personal branding.
  • Package what you write. Give numbered lists of tips, such as “Top 10 Tips for Writing Your Resume.” It makes for good reading and other bloggers will link to it. Be sure to include a synopsis paragraph at the top.
  • Always link to other sites in your posts. Every post should have at least one link. “Links are the currency of the Internet,” Debbie said. You can link back to your own past posts, articles you’ve read, Wikipedia entries, etc. Make each post a resource worth reading and coming back to.
  • Use the right keywords in your headings and posts. Think like a journalist when titling your posts. Doing so will attract readers as well as Google. Be specific and colorful.
  • If you can’t commit to blogging consistently over a period of a year or two, don’t do it. Try to post at least once or twice a week. (Debbie cited some bloggers who post three times a day!) Such frequent posting will help your blog come up higher in search engine results. (I can testify to that: After three and a half months of posting nearly every day, I have captured the #1 ranking on Yahoo for the term “Publishing Careers.”)
  • Allow comments on your blog. To generate more, you can ask for them in your posts, or e-mail a link to the post to your friends and colleagues, asking them to take a look and leave a comment.
  • Consider using “controversy” to make your blog stand out. Obviously, tread carefully and always be true to your personality.
  • Keep focused on what you’re trying to achieve with your blog.
  • Consider embedding video clips in your blog. You can use YouTube to post them and then link back to them from your blog.
  • Don’t make posting to your blog harder than it has to be. Think of it as a tiny task. “You’re always running across ‘bloggy bits’ during the day,” Debbie said, such as relevant articles and blog posts, that you can refer to. Your entries can be short.
  • Establish yourself as someone who has something to say. You’ll attract speaking engagements and media quotes, and maybe even a new job or consulting gig.

In closing, Debbie offered one last piece of advice: Just do it! It will be worth the time and effort.

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