Those who have run a small business know the value of constantly reminding yourself that you have a finite amount of time and an infinite number of things to do. You could write a blog, or you could build your customer base, enhance product delivery, streamline your supply pipeline, evaluate your marketing, or any number of other activities that bring money in the door.
Whatever you do with your time, it needs to be deliberate, and it needs to have a direct, measurable impact on your bottom line.
Think! What is your time worth?
So..What is your Time Worth?
For the sake of discussion, let’s say your time is billable at $60 / hour ($1 / minute). How long will it take you to write 750 words on something related to your business? If you are comfortable researching good content, you know your industry and have a plan – it might take you between 30-minutes and an hour to lay out the bones of a great blog article.
Writing the article: 60 minutes – $60
Total Time Investment (so far): 60 minutes – $60
Drafting blog content is only part of the work; now you have to publish it. You can certainly post it in your WordPress page and click, [publish]. However, remember, you are writing this for an audience. You want them to find the content when they search for your product keywords in Google or Bing. Have you defined keywords? Good blog developers keep this in mind.
What are your goals?
This is the point where you have to ask yourself, are you aiming for great or good enough? Is your brand, your product, excellent or just, o.k.?
If your answer is good enough or o.k., the rest of this article will not be of value to you. If however, you seek to establish excellence as a hallmark of your brand, publishing and walking away is not enough. You need to edit and optimize your blog content for readability on all devices.
You’ll want to make sure to optimize your content for search engine traffic (SEO – search engine optimization). This optimization includes making sure you have defined meta descriptions and added visuals. Great visuals, images, or videos almost always cost $, even if you measure that $ as time lost to the creative process.
Optimizing for readability, SEO & publishing: 60 minutes – $60
Total Time Investment (so far): 120 minutes – $120
Helpful Tools for Blogging
Now your article is published, it is optimized and gorgeous. You have great blog content!
You can use SiteAnalyzer or another SEO tool to look at your page and see that you measure your success. However, that is, unfortunately, only half the post production challenge. How are you going to make sure you are engaging with social media?
It’s a new world out there, and in that new world, Social media now drives more traffic to many websites than search engines. If you were concerned about Search Engine Optimization, you should be focused at least as much on Social Media Optimization. While SEO must be part of any successful blog building plan, you cannot forget about social media engagement.
Optimizing for Social Media & Publishing: 30 minutes – $30
Total Time Investment (so far): 180 minutes – $180
Measuring your Blog Writing Progress
Finally, you need to analyze your success or failure.
If you cannot measure how effective the work you are doing is, it is not work; it is gambling.
- How are you going to establish whether the phone call you received today is related to the words you drafted on your website three months ago?
- How can you justify spending $3,000 on a site upgrade if you do not even know where your website gets its traffic?
- How can you build an effective online marketing presence if you do not even know where your clients are finding you in the first place?
The answer to all these questions is that you analyze your traffic, a lot!
You need to know the effectiveness of your writing, including how your writing is being read, acted upon, or dismissed. You cannot short change this. Err, well, you cannot if you are committed to improving your bottom-line, and your marketing effectiveness. Insightful and actionable analysis is not easy when you are already juggling a business to run and a blog to write. One of the benefits of working with someone experienced in blog development is that they often already have a great system in place to dig into your traffic patterns and build conclusions that you can put to work.
Analysis, conclusion building, and evaluation: 30 minutes – $30
Total Time Investment (so far): 210 minutes – $210
The Value Proposition
As you are already someone focused on making sure you manage your time and budget effectively, ask yourself, is creating one 750 word article worth 3.5 hours of your day? Moreover, keep in mind that for you to see any value in writing a blog, you will want to post original and excellent blog content at least once every 7-10 days.
Creating and publishing content is a great approach, and maybe the only guaranteed path, to take that will get you guaranteed long term website growth. However, to do it yourself means accepting a significant opportunity and financial cost:
(your billable rate) * (3.5 hours per post) * (3-4 posts per month)
About 12 hours per month
Would you pay yourself 12 hours per month to create content?
If that is your business, to create blog content, maybe. But if you are busy delivering your product, for the sake of your business – save yourself money and stop considering it, pay someone to do it for you!
You can do everything, but should you?
You could do your taxes, but you pay a CPA because they will do it faster and cheaper, and probably better.
You could do your oil changes, but you pay someone because they will make it convenient.
You could build your website, but you pay someone else because it would take too much of your time and effort to create and maintain it.
You should look at your blog content the same way. You can generate your content, but if you pay a great ghostwriter to do it, they will save you time, save you money, and drive business to your front door. If you find a good ghostwriter, it is the best dollar-for-dollar online marketing vendor you can retain.
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