Posted on November 15, 2023 at 1:00 PM by Guest Author
As an author, you need to invest your time wisely. Should you be spending it on blogging as a marketing tactic? Discover the pros and cons of author blogs.
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In the current marketing landscape, there’s a lot of debate about whether author blogs are still valuable. Some authors and industry experts remain loyal blogging advocates, whereas others have sidelined the practice in favor of other tactics. Chances are, you’re wondering where blogging fits into your marketing efforts — if at all.
Here’s the thing…
Over the last few years, there’s been a shift in the way people consume information and connect with one another. Thanks to its immersive and shareable nature, video has skyrocketed in popularity. Plus, an increasing number of people go to social media to get answers to questions and interact with creators in real time.
Of course, you shouldn’t ignore this shift. A fundamental marketing principle is to be where your audience is and give them what they want. So, it makes sense to leverage the platforms where your audience spends time and create short-form content they’ll engage with.
But that doesn’t mean you should reconsider your commitment to maintaining (or starting) a blog.
Although the landscape has evolved, the written word remains a powerful force. After all, that’s the basis of your work! Author blogs provide a level of exploration and connection that can be hard to achieve through short-form or visual content alone. They offer a space for authors to…
Express their voices
Share deeper insights
Cultivate dedicated fan bases
And despite what you may think, people do still read blogs. According to a recent HubSpot survey about how often people read blogs, 29% of respondents said they read them 1-4 times per month. On top of that, 35% stated their blog consumption has increased from last year. Given that the survey consisted of a modest number of people (just 325), it’s safe to say there’s still a sizeable audience for blog content, especially when that audience is made up of readers!
So, when it comes down to it, blogging for authors is still a worthwhile tactic. It’s not one you should automatically dismiss. Instead, you should determine how it could fit into your unique marketing strategy. Like everything else, blogging has its pros and cons…
There are several advantages of blogging for authors. That’s why there are still so many author blogs out there. Below are some of the pros of creating unique articles for your website.
THEY HELP ESTABLISH CREDIBILITY.
Blogs are great for establishing credibility among readers and others in the writing community. It can be difficult to prove yourself as a serious author when you're just starting. However, consistent blogging can help. You can demonstrate your writing skills with each article and showcase your expertise in your genre or niche. Ultimately, it can encourage interest in your work and assist you in building your career.
THEY LET AUTHORS CONNECT WITH THEIR AUDIENCE.
The more you can connect with potential fans, the better. And that’s what blogging allows authors like you to do. You can use long-form content to talk about your writing journey, share a chapter of your new book, or explain your process. The possibilities are endless, as there are many ways to help readers get to know you as an author.
Plus, you can ask questions or request feedback, allowing readers to respond in the comment section. This is a way to start building relationships with potential fans outside social media.
BLOGS CAN IMPROVE TRAFFIC & DISCOVERABILITY.
One of the top reasons author blogs (and blogs in general) are used is that they can help drive website traffic. By regularly posting high-quality content that’s geared toward your audience and optimized for relevant keywords, you can improve your rankings in search. The more visible you are in the results, the greater your chances of bringing people to your site.
BLOGGING PROVIDES NEWSLETTER CONTENT.
If you’ve struggled to come up with ideas for your author newsletter, blogging can help. Even if you only create one new blog a month, you can share that blog in the same month’s newsletter. Alternatively, you can repurpose the content for use in your newsletter by pulling out sections and expanding on them, turning the blog into a video, and so on.
THEY CAN ASSIST IN PROMOTING BOOKS.
Although author blogs should be about delivering value and connecting with readers, they can also be used for book promotion. You can build buzz in advance by sharing a snippet of your book, discussing the research you’ve done for it, or even framing the article from the POV of your main character. Then, you can include a link at the bottom of the blog for readers to get the book. This is one of the most common ebook marketing tips, and for good reason — it can be highly effective!
Of course, there are downsides to blogging for authors, too. If there weren’t, author blogs wouldn’t be a topic of debate among those in the writing community. So, it’s important to factor in the cons when deciding whether to continue — or get started.
THEY CAN BE TIME-CONSUMING.
Blogs are similar to books in that they both take time. Despite blogs being shorter, one-off pieces of content, they still require a significant chunk of your day to write. Plus, there’s the research you’ll need to do beforehand and the editing you’ll need to do after. Depending on your schedule, you may find it tough to fit in blogging.
BLOGGING CAN LEAD TO BURNOUT.
Adding blogging to your plate can also cause you to burn out. Even if you love writing (and you undoubtedly do), it’s possible to lose your passion when you’re doing it constantly. Unless you find a balance, you could wind up exhausted, stressed, and devoid of ideas.
THERE’S A LOT OF COMPETITION.
There are more than 600 million blogs on the internet, meaning there’s much competition. You’ll likely be up against many other author blogs and niche websites that are trying to rank for the same keywords and grab readers’ attention. When you’re first starting, setting yourself apart from the rest can be especially difficult.
BLOGGING MAY BE A DISTRACTION.
If you’re not careful, your blog could end up distracting you from your real work — writing your next book. It’s easy to get swept up in maintaining your blog, reviewing the numbers, and responding to comments. But if you focus too much on this aspect of your marketing efforts, you may miss an important deadline on the path to publication.
IT DOESN’T DELIVER RESULTS OVERNIGHT.
When it comes to blogging for authors, a significant amount of patience is required.
It takes time, consistency, and quality output to see results. It doesn’t happen overnight. In fact, it may be months before you start ranking higher in search. And unless you’re putting in effort elsewhere (e.g., sharing posts in your newsletter or on your social media pages), you probably won’t see a noticeable change in your site traffic for a while.
We may be in an age of short-form content, but author blogs still have a place. So, don’t discount creating long-form content for your own website without weighing the pros and cons. Take a close look at your current efforts to determine where this tactic could fit in. If your reader base enjoys consuming this type of content, it’s worth using blogging to reach more potential fans.
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