If blogging is important to you and SEO is a priority, also check the following articles I wrote on how to position your brand to increase sales, how to expand your e-newsletter’s ROI, how to write content marketing to increase results, and the psychology of color to improve your website and blog.
If you follow other planning processes and strategies to get your blog ready for the holiday season different from the below, I invite you to share it in this article’s comment section, so others can benefit from a collective free advice.
Let’s jump-start our blogging game together!
Step 1- Answer the Following Questions: The information collected by answering these questions will be used to create content marketing. The more we blog and the longer the articles are, the better organic SEO we get. This happens because we are providing more information -- more keywords, links, and content -- for crawls to scan and track in connection to our brand. So when people search on Google for topics related to our expertise, products and services, our probabilities of appearing are higher.
- Do we have holiday tips, know-hows, DIY or any ideas to share with our target audience?
- Do we have products or services that our clients can benefit from during the holidays?
- Can we create a "Holiday Bargain Roundups”? — in other words, can we agree with our affiliate providers to create a shopping list of related bargains to add value to our customers?
- Are we doing anything special during the holidays we could share with our audience, such as unique family holiday recipes, games, celebrations with our company members or DIY and crafts? or want to share tips for snapping the perfect family picture or video?
- Do we have old posts we could use this year?
- Can we offer any discounts?
- How could we incentivize loyal customers?
- How often can I blog? If I am too busy, can I at least blog once a month?
Step 2 - Plan an Agenda to Build an Editorial Calendar: Planning out our content is very important, not only during the holidays, but also yearly — ideally it is best to blog on a monthly basis, or at least quarterly. Mapping out content in alignment to holidays, social interests, market trends and audience preferences makes our information relevant to our readers. I find inspiration searching on Pinterest or Instagram and through brainstorming with my staff, my clients and online friends.
1.- create a business calendar/agenda. This way the content we build is organized based on our business objectives.
2.- on a piece of paper create a list to highlight the below. Once this list is done, mark the dates and content ideas on the business calendar:
- business milestones and deadlines,
- content marketing options,
- client needs,
- products/services benefits,
- sharing the information collected on the first step described above
- taking some days off. It is important to highlight this information because we want to make sure to schedule content around our days off that doesn’t require us to get back to our audience. Such as quotes, pictures of our team members, sharing a milestone, etc.
- conducting promotions or special campaigns
- decreasing the number of postings due to high season needs. This is a good eye opener — relying on our staff and gradually train them to help us manage our online properties is the way to go. For solo entrepreneurs, scheduling content in advance is the best practice!
- editing content where needed to avoid publishing outdated information
- adding more backlinks and images -- including pinnable images and sharing capabilities
- fixing any links that might be broken (links to other websites, affiliate links, or links to your own content)
- including call-to-action (CTA) – such as inviting readers to subscribe to the newsletter, "follow us on Facebook, Periscope, Twitter," visit our store or buying a product we promote
Step 3 - Get Your Blog In Shape: Make the blog holiday friendly. There are several ways to do this, besides current holiday themed content. We can,
- Add menu items for holiday themes, such as “Gift Recommendations,” “Holidays Go-To Solutions," or “Holiday Recipes”
- Create engaging linked images of relevant holiday posts on the sidebar
- Offer a special "Holiday Gift Guide" by creating a list of the “Top 20 Year’s best Product Reviews" that relate. Be sure to create an image on our side bar announcing the guide and promote it across our social media profiles/pages
- If applicable, add links to your online store, Facebook picture albums and videos, tagging brands and partners on social media or reaching out to brands that fit your niche
Also, we can’t forget about updating our blog’s SEO widgets, settings, tags, meta info and keywords to strategically address all the holidays. This update helps us increase our brand visibility organically. Because before paying for online ads on Google, Facebook, Yelp or in any other social platform, we need to optimize our organic efforts, otherwise we won’t get a good return on our investment.
Step 4 - Schedule your Content in Advance: Consistency in sharing our voice online is one of the most important things when blogging and building a brand. There is too much content circulating digitally; so, our audience most likely is following us because of our unique essence. Below are two lists of content ideas you could schedule on future posts:
- 10 Tweetables — use hashtags and name-tags to increase your post’s visibility such as #thinklocal, #smallbiz and @AlmuCorazon — substitute “X” for your offer (brand, promotional campaign, product or service, special holidays such as Black Friday, New Years, etc) and, substitute “link” for a link to your website or other online properties:
- Check out my top 10 list of allergen-free recipes for the #holidays “link”
- Looking for “X”? Follow us on “X” to get special discounts #BlackFriday2016
- Subscribe to our newsletter to receive special #coupons for “X”
- Get ready for the #holidays w/ our special "X" - “link” ( )
- Not sure what 2gift this holiday season? Take a look at this list “link”
- Increase #SALES this #holidays by following this 5 easy steps “link”
- Stop by our store, take a picture and post it on @Instagram & @Facebook using "#X" to get 15%off this holidays!
- What Every Foodie Wants for #Christmas “link”
- Top 10 gifts to “X” fans -> “link"
- We are inviting u2 our “X” #Holidayparty2016, enjoy free “x” from “@“ & enter to win a “X”! “link”
- What holiday(s) do you celebrate? Why? Share one of your favorite holiday memories.
- What are some of your childhood holiday traditions?
- Are you traveling this holiday season? Where are you going?
- What is your favorite Christmas/holiday tradition?
- What is your favorite game to play during the holidays and why? Do you have any funny anecdote?
- What is your favorite Christmas/holiday song (food/drink) and why? Mine are…”X”
- Do you have a cleaning tip that saves your attire every year? Explain how to use it
- What is the best gift you’ve ever given or received? What made it so special?
- Share your favorite recipe, a family twist to a well-known recipe
Step 5 - Cross-promote Content with Influencers and Brand Advocates: Cross-promoting our content marketing and brand assets are a proven practice that can work across multiple digital platforms and social networks. As it increases our brand visibility and reinforces our connection with loyal customers. We can achieve this on scheduled posts as well, we just need to make sure to name-tag and hashtag the scheduled content. But, there are right and wrong ways to cross-promote. Be careful, we don’t want to become “spammy.” I invite you to give me shoutouts on social media @AlmuCorazon; and, if you would like to promote your products/services on my Facebook pages Simple&Social and Spanish Flavor, send me a note via email or a Facebook message in advance to discuss the opportunity and make sure your post is in alignment with our community sharing guidelines.
I hope these 5 steps and ideas will help you decide how you want to continue with your blogging program during the holidays; so that, you don’t wind up hunched over your computer screen while everyone else is passing the gravy boat.
As mentioned before, if you follow any other strategy to plan your blogging activity, please share it below to help other readers.
Leave us a comment and share this blog post so others can benefit. Cheers!