Top 5 Most Common Blogging Mistakes + How to Avoid Them
No fluffy intro required. Let's get down to it...
1 | Not Blogging Regularly Hurts Your SEO & Business
It may seem obvious, but it's first on the list for a reason: it's the easiest mistake to make. If you're running an interior design business (especially as a one-woman show) marketing yourself falls second to client tasks.
hurts your SEO
potential clients will think you're on hiatus when really you've been working your booty off
If this is your situation, don't panic. Even as pros, we're guilty of dropping the ball on ourselves sometimes, too. But if you're serious about marketing your business, you really have to do it. (If you're not convinced you need a blog, read here.)
Put on a pot of coffee, bribe your children/significant other/beloved Fido to leave you alone for an hour or two, and just make it happen.
Take one day to write several posts and format them into your website as drafts; then set calendar reminders for the dates you want to publish.
Don't try to take on the world with a 1,000-word blog post. Short and snappy posts (in moderation) tend to get better responses anyway. Just keep your images top-notch quality.
2 | Don't Forget You Have Readers
can feel impersonal
doesn't attract the clients you actually want to work with
Whenever Ochre & Beige has a blog content planning session with our clients, we always discuss the narrator we'll use in posts. For example, will you write your posts as "We, the design team at ABC Firm," or as "I, the interior designer?"
Neither is better than the other — it's simply a choice of whether you are creating your brand around the firm as a whole or the designer.
Your chosen narrator is also speaking to someone. In our case, we're talking to you, the interior designer who's trying to use their blog to kick butt and grow their business. Who is your someone?
Do this exercise to narrow down your target audience
Speak directly to your audience in your posts, and refer to them personally as "you"
Give your target audience something useful or enjoyable
3 | Low OR EVEN MEDIUM Quality Images = Self-Sabotage
Please, please don't use anything but the best quality images. We are in the digital age, and whether we love it or hate it, the quality of images we see on the internet these days is top-notch resolution. When you see one that’s not quite up-to-snuff… you notice.
You deserve the best possible attention on your work and your blog posts — don’t self-sabotage!
Poor image quality can devalue your work and the appearance of your company
You might not attract the clients you want
Invest in a high-quality camera (even the latest smartphones can shoot great quality images at a close range)
Hire a photographer to document your projects professionally
Browse stock images. Here are some great free options, but there are other stock photo repositories you can purchase if these don't have what you're looking for:
4 | The Dark Side of Keyword-Stuffing Headers for SEO
Alright. Let’s talk SEO — three letters that inspire more fear and frustration than they reasonably should. I'm going to publish a separate post dedicated entirely to SEO, but for the sake of this one, we're talking headers.
Headers (abbreviated as H1, H2, H3 in the dashboard/backend of your website) are the font size options for the titles and subtitles of your content. For example, in this post you're reading right now:
H1, Main Title: "5 Most Common Blogging Mistakes + How to Avoid Them"
H2, Subheadings: "4 | The Dark Side of Keyword-Stuffing Headers for SEO"
H3, Smaller Subheadings: "Negative Impact," "Solutions"
Why is this important?
When Google's little algorithms are crawling a blog post, they "read" the text from largest to smallest font size. The larger the print, the more likely it corresponds to the overall meaning of the post, which they can then categorize and distribute into people's search results.
Long story short: Headers are prime real estate for those coveted SEO keywords that you use to promote your business.
BUT here’s the problem…
Filling a header with all your favorite keywords leaves little room for creativity. For example, if I wanted to make the above header keyword-heavy, it might say something like:
4 | Keyword-Stuffing Headers in Interior Design Blog Posts Hurts SEO and Growth
I'm sorry, but that's just not that exciting. Where's the creativity and intrigue? Where's my personality as the writer, or the unique flair of the Ochre & Beige brand? Nowhere!
By comparison, "The Dark Side of Keyword-Stuffing Headers for SEO" includes a few important keywords but is much more intriguing.
Moral of the story: Give SEO your best effort in posts, but don't become a slave to it.
Can come at the expense of being a relatable human being
Can actually hurt SEO if you do it too often
You should still include SEO keywords in your headers, but don't be controlled by the need to do so
In one post, make some headers SEO-savvy and straightforward and give others the freedom to be creative (for example, the H1 title of this post is very straightforward).
Moderation, moderation, moderation
5 | It's Not Old News... Promote Your Blog Posts on Social Media SEVERAL Times
Don't publish a blog post and then just hope potential clients will stumble across it — promote on social media! And not just once but several times throughout the week or month, as appropriate.
The point of a blog is to create content that will drive traffic to your site; if you don't share your blog across your social channels, you're not making the most of it!
Pick several main points from your blog post and stagger related social media promotions throughout the week. For example, this blog post has 5 main points... a social media post focused on each would be great promotion.
Don't have new content to share? There's no shame in re-sharing blog posts from a while back. Unless the content is event-related or specific to a season, full steam ahead.
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