blogging steven j davies

5 Blogging Trends For 2018

If your business or interests are rather niche, it can be difficult to keep coming up with fresh ideas for your blog. A company that specialises in cement screed for example may struggle to create blog posts that are not, basically, saying the same thing as each other.

What you need are interesting, varied blog posts; nobody likes that one guy that always talks about himself, for example, so you could talk about other things that are industry related. You could even mention other companies, if they are not direct competitors.

In additon to varying your post topics, you could also try other approaches. There are 5 different ways to breathe new life into your blog that I feel are really going to take off in 2018.

 

Live Streaming

 

Live streaming is going to make more sense to some companies than others but there is a lot that can be done with it. I have always been a big fan of being as transparent as possible, since people are much more likely to engage with you if you are open and honest.

A restuarant for example that live streams from the ktichen is doing two things:

 

  • Reaching a much wider audience (read, potential customers) with no marketing costs or extra effort

 

  • Demonstrating that they can be trusted with your food

 

Quite recently there have been a spate of accusations, closures and poor reviews within the food industry due to poor hygiene, food safety and other unsavoury practices. Live streaming the kitchens and cooking process can provide confidence and assurances like nothing else.

This can be even more effective when the chefs are able to add a little ‘flair’ to the process.

As well as streaming live, videos can also be saved for sharing later. If one of your chefs decides to get a bit creative, like this guy…

These videos can be diplayed on your website, shared to social media and provide an extra way for you to market your restaurant.

Product demonstrations, business tours and explainer videos are all great ideas that can be expanded on by most companies.

 

Engaging Content

 

Engaging content is still king, and to really get the most from your posts they should be written by somebody that has a genuine flair for it. Mosts companies and individuals hire somebody like me for this, but if you have the talent and the time this is somehting that can be done in-house.

Writing content that is going to be shared is obviously the goal, and 2018 is seeing audiences leaning toward magazine style posts more than others. This means long form posts, approaching article style writing, as opposed to short quickie posts of around 500 words.

Towards the end of 2017, the top rated posts were 2000 words and longer. Of course, your posts don’t have to be this epic, especially if the point can be made in fewer words and have the same impact – never fill a post with fluff just to pad out the word count.

If your post can better servce your audience by going indepth and with lots of detail and citations, then by all means do it. Not all post topics are made to be long form but it is recommended that you aim for 1000 words, at least.

 

Design Makeovers

Blog sites have traditionally consisted of a screen with all of the posts displayed as excerpts that you can scroll through, almost like a Facebook feed. This approach has slowly been dying out for a few years, and Google’s Blogger doesn’t help by keeping the style in a death grip, but 2018 is likely going to see the end of it.

I’ve always considered that style of post display to be ugly and more than a little clunky. Experiment with different layouts and see what works best for you. If you have a wordpress site, you may be pleasantly surprised with the options available to you.

 

Engaging With The Audience

 

More and more, CEOs and Directors are engaging with customers as away of connecting with them and building relationships. This is not by accident. Consumers are fed up with faceless corporations, call centres (don’t get me started) and the feeling that those in charge have no accountability.

Nobody likes to feel they are not being listened to, so when somebody like Elon Musk starts using Twitter to engage with his audience it creates feelings of trust toward that that person, and their business.

There has been a marked decrease in post comments, and this results in fewer visits and subscribers. This is largely due to share buttons, which is no bad thing in of its itself but it’s not being taken advantage of.

CTA (calls to action) can be used to encourage comments and followers, and as for shares… Well, if you find where they have been shared to (this is quite simple to do on Twitter) you can engage with the sharer there by commenting, liking and thanking the person responsible.

 

Telling A Story

If you can create an interesting narrative then your audience members are more likely to to keep reading to the end, comment and share. The most mundane service or product can be made to seem much more interesting with the right story.

Storytelling is a great marketing tool for promoting whatever it is you are offering. Cameras, for instance, can be marketed by telling a story of your awesome vacation (true or not) and the great shots you managed to get thanks to this new camera that you discovered.

If creative writing is not really a strong point of yours then you might want to consider hiring somebody that can create this kind of content on your behalf.

Are you already using any of the above methods, or have you discovered another way to increase your reach? I’d love to hear from you and how you are getting on.

Save the world, save the cheerleader... Or leave a comment. Whatever