The Six Reasons No One is Sharing Your Blog Posts, and How to Fix That
As the business of e-commerce continues to evolve, many businesses have found blogging about their products and services to be highly beneficial. Blogs can be used in a number of different ways, from announcing sales and promotions, to alerting customers on the newest products, to how-to manuals on how to use the products, to entertaining posts that improve the business’ image, to ultimately driving customers to the sales page where they can buy products from the business.
Of course, a business’ blog will accomplish none of these things if nobody is reading it. There are countless blogs on the Internet that suffer this fate, for many reasons that I’ll get to in a moment. That said, the best way to spike the number of readers on your blog is to make it sharable. If what you wrote is interesting and impacts them, readers will want to share it with their friends by posting it on their Facebook page, Twitter or Google+ feed, or their own blog.
If word of mouth is the best advertising for traditional businesses, social media sharing is the new word of mouth for online retailers. If your business’ blog is getting lots of hits, you’re already on the right track. But if your blog posts are being read and shared by nobody but your mother, here’s likely why:
1. Bad Headline This is the most important part of your blog post, for obvious reasons. If your headline is catchy and offers a tease, it’ll likely result in a click. If it’s not, you’ve got no chance. A headline is like a first impression; without a good one, you’ve already lost. The headline is also the first thing a reader will see when your blog post is tweeted or shared on Facebook, Google+ or LinkedIn. If the headline doesn’t cause them to say, “What’s that about, I want to read more,” they simply won’t. A good headline will be a clever tease, descriptive, and cause a sense of urgency. Don’t be afraid to be snarky or funny either.
2. It’s All About You Unless the reader has a personal relationship with you, they don’t care about you. And they probably don’t care about your company either — just the products you make and sell. So make the blog posts about that. A neat how-to guide, or list of tips, or an update on the latest release of gear will generate a lot more interest than a post about the company Christmas party. Workingperson.com does a good job of keeping the focus on the products, not the company, with its blog Workingperson.me. You won’t find posts about Workingperson.com’s quarterly meetings or the CEO’s favorite gloves, but you will find all the latest updates on the clothes and gear that working people need in their careers. The site also alerts customers to upcoming sales and giveaways and offers advice. And there are tons of how-to demos, as well as advice for washing and upkeep and things like that. It stays topical, and interesting to a reader trying to make good choices about the products they buy.
3. You’re Boring Good writing has a voice. It shouldn’t read like a chemistry textbook. It should read like a parent reads a bedtime story, with some emotion and enthusiasm. Your blog might be full of useful information, but if it’s dry and dull, nobody’s going to want to read it. There are more effective ways of falling asleep, after all. A great example of this is the blog Nerd Fitness. SOMETIMES THE WRITING IS IN ALL CAPS LIKE THIS AND IT MAKES IT ENTERTAINING TO READ!!!!! The writing is enthusiastic, descriptive, and above all, entertaining. You can’t please everyone, but find a niche, and write with some personality.
4. Same Old, Same Old There’s a reason so many people give Nickleback a hard time — all their songs sound exactly the same. If all your blog posts are the same, people are going to change the station on you. Change up the format by using videos, block text, and a variety of different topics. There are different visual headings, photographs, bold text, graphs, charts, and info boxes at your disposal. Use them. In short, just don’t make every post look exactly the same. Use different formats, and your readers will feel like they’re getting something new from you, not just the same recycled text.
5. What is This Even About? If a person reads your blog post and has no idea what point you’re trying to make, they’re not going to share it. You should be able to answer the question, “What is this blog post about” in a dozen words or less. For example, this blog post you’re reading right now is about “the reasons nobody shares your blog posts, and how to fix that.” Stay on point. The takeaway should be clear, and it should be clearly written. Garbled wording makes things hard to understand. Cut to the chase. Be simple and succinct.
6. Sharing Your Blog Isn’t Easy Do you have a “share this” link at the top or bottom of your blog post, to make it easy to share? Is it properly formatted? Or do your readers have to manually open their social media page, copy and paste the URL, and then add their own title? The less they have to do for themselves, the easier it will be to share, and more likely they will be to share it. The less clicks, the better. Having a “subscribe by email” widget is another great tool. Make it easy on your readers, and they’ll make your sharing stats go way up.
There’s a certain sociological function in sharing an blog post. It’s an extension of personality. It’s good to be the guy who always shares the neat thing. People want to say, “I found that.” Make your blog posts something that people will want to be proud to put their own name behind. Your business will prosper because of it.
If your business blog is struggling with a lack of sharing, it’s time to do two things. First, thank your mother for reading and sharing. Then make some changes. Sharing isn’t just for children anymore.