A blog is a part of an author's platform. It's a great tool for networking, promoting, and sharing ideas and your work. I have this blog on my website, and I post about writing and books. I am also part of two group blogs, the Lethal Ladies Writes and Pens, Paws, and Claws.The group blogs allow the participants to share the load of content creation and marketing.
Here's why it's important for authors to build their platform and post regularly.
- It is best to have your blog on your website. And a blog is a great way to keep your web content fresh. People usually don't revisit sites with old or stale information.
- You need a regular blog schedule, My work, writing, and life calendars are jam packed, so I blog weekly (on Fridays). With group blogs, you blog on your assigned day or rotation. For Pens, Paws, and Claws, there are ten of us, we blog every ten weeks. It's best if you can keep a schedule.
- Group blogs are a great way to share the love (and the work). Lethal Ladies Write is made up of members of my local Sisters in Crime chapter here in Central Virginia. Pens, Paws, and Claws are all writers who love animals. We're from all over the US and Canada. Most of us are mysteryand thriller writers, but we also have those who specialize in paranormal, romantic suspense, and YA. I like the mix. We all love our pets, and I'm honored to blog with so many talented writers.
- A blog is also platform to promote others. The ten authors blog on Saturdays for Pens, Paws, and Claws. Recently, I added #WriterWednesday. It's a chance for us to interview and showcase other authors. (I put out the call that we were doing interviews, and I'm booked up through June of next year.)
- Make your content relevant and useful. Share information (e.g. product reviews, book reviews, services, how to's, great stories, etc.) It shouldn't always be "buy my book."
- You need to get the word out about your blog. I share posts on Twitter, Facebook, Facebook groups, Yahoo groups, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
- Blog promotion groups are a way to market your posts. I am a member of several online promo groups on Facebook. There are calls for blog or social media shares. Read the rules of each carefully. The requirements vary from group to group. By participating, you agree to share others' works on your social media platform. I've doubled my blog traffic by participating. I prefer groups that don't require that you follow or share all posts. I like to read them and choose ones that my readers would be interested in. I've learned a lot and met many talented bloggers and writers.
- Make sure that you linkyour blog feed to Goodreads and your Amazon author page. This is a way for readers to find out what you post.
- Make sure to put a link to your website or blog in your signature of your email. You'd be surprised at how many people will stop by to check it out.
- I also put my website/blog on my business cards, bookmarks, pens, and pencils that I give out at book events.