We start our content marketing campaigns with all good intentions. Unfortunately, unless we re-evaluate the content that we’re publishing on a regular basis over-promotion can creep in!
If your blog posts were celebrity figures, which would they be – Princess Di or Donkey?
These are two different ends of the modern-day spectrum. But it’s worth a moment of thought to ponder how our written words are considered:
- With humility and grace.
- As loud and over-anxious.
Always A Lady
When I asked my Facebook contacts to share their impressions of Princess Diana, the responses were favorable and immediate. Overwhelmingly people remarked of her style, grace, care for all others – even when the chips were against her. The comments also reflected her love for her boys.
In short, the feedback was glowing of what Diana made her brand: “The People’s Princess.” Lady Diana.
Here’s a visual reminder:
Is your memory of her positive?
While most will recall Shrek’s Donkey as enthusiastic, sensitive, and well-meaning, they may also associate the words talkative, annoying, and disruptive with the waffle-loving character. C’mon, admit it – You love Donkey, but you keep him at a few paces back.
A little fairy tale:
After just a few seconds, what are your thoughts?
Your Reader: Victim or Prospect?
As writers we must think about how our words are perceived by others. What does the reader gain by clicking our link?
Lately, I have seen a trend that makes me uncomfortable: Every post ends in a commercial — A push-marketing sale-pitch. Even from bloggers that I looked up to and held highly as an example to others.
This concerns me because our readers look to us for credible information. They did not venture to read our words to be consistently sold to:
- “Sign up for my webinar.”
- “Contact me, contact me, contact me.”
- “Buy my book.”
- “Click on this blog post.”
Often enough, I’ve seen this text formatted three times larger than the rest of the post text. I come away unmotivated, and I feel much like Shrek in the video above: Sighing with exhaust.
All Good In Moderation
Our readers arrive at our posts often unknowing neophytes waiting to be educated on whatever topic is our expertise. These are tender moments, as they hold the decision whether to read on or click away. They decide whether they will subscribe to our RSS Feed, or stay away never to visit again.
Don’t we owe our readers the style and grace of well-mannered bloggers? Shouldn’t we be educating and serving as a point of resource more than we are pleading for our readers to do something for our benefit?
Am I saying that we should never lead to our goodies and services? No. But I am saying that we should remember the 80-20 rule: 80% of our posts are informational, and 20% (or less) should include promotional prose.
Note: I did not define this as 80% of each post being informational and 20% of each post being promotional.
Remember that side bar? Use it! 🙂
Respect Among Bloggers
In the social space, it’s all about sharing. We want our content to be liked, shared, re-tweeted, sent, plussed, linked to, etc.
The purpose for blogging began as a way to continue conversation and to inform. Converse and inform…building community.
So, I ask you, the reader and potential fellow blogger…
If at the end of every blog post it’s all, “Pick me, pick me,” how is that different from broadcasting?
If that is all I see from you, what is my motivation to share your posts?
Do you want your brand to be thought of as serving the people, or self-serving?
Do you agree or disagree?
What points have I forgotten?
Tell me your thoughts in the comments box below…