2010 Blogging Plan: Part 5 of 5

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Wow! We’ve done a lot so far for our 2010 Blogging Plan and now we’re in the home stretch.  Before we conclude our efforts with the final stage of the plan, let’s recap the previous 4 steps:

Step 1:  Business Goals – those specific, motivating, actionable, relevant and time-bound goals for your business.  Seeing how your blog supports your business goals will make it easier to maintain a blog.

Step 2:  Positioning Your Blog – being clear on WHO you’re writing for will help you create content that people will benefit from and want to read.

Step 3:  Engagement – blogging is not a solitary activity.  You will be a better blogger, and business person, by engaging with your community.

Step 4:  Content Plan – map out the ‘what’ and ‘when’ of your blogging efforts so you can be successful and get results.

…And what about those results?!  Now it’s time to measure and analyze those outcomes in Step 5: Success Measurement.

A mentor once told me, “You can’t improve what you don’t measure.” And it’s true.  When I was in sales, I had better results and made more money when I tracked my prospecting activities.  Conversely, when I took my eye off the numbers, my results (ie. income) went down!  Yikes!

The same holds true for your blogging, especially if blogging is a tactic related to an online marketing strategy.  But what should you be tracking?  There are many statistics about your blog that you could look at.  And there are some good, free tools out there.  We’ve used Statcounter and Google Analytics.

Even if you’re just beginning, I strongly encourage you to attach some kind of measuring tool to your blog ASAP – even if you’re not going to look at it for a few months.  Why?  Because eventually you’ll get curious about who’s visiting your blog, or you’ll want to know what’s been your most popular post.

But you won’t be able to satisfy that curiosity if you don’t have a mechanism in place to capture that information.  So at the very least, use Google Analytics to begin with.  It’s easy to install and it’s free.  Do it.  Do it NOW!  I promise, you’ll be glad you did.

To start out, here’s what we recommend to track and measure on a monthly basis:

Track on your own:

  • Number of posts
  • Number of comments
    – comments on your own blog
    – comments you’ve made on other blogs

Track with Google Analytics (or other program):

  • Number of unique visitors
  • Top referring sites
  • Number of subscribers
  • Average time someone stays on your site (bounce rate)

As I mentioned before, there are lots of other things you can keep track of.  But in my opinion, there’s enough work to be done when it comes to building momentum with your blog.  Pace yourself and build on your experience.  Blogging is a journey and your knowledge and comfort level will increase and evolve the more you do it.

One more thing about tracking your results….I recommend keeping an eye out for your most popular posts so you can see what people are looking for.  It might indicate a topic area that you could write more about.  Look for this when you’ve been blogging for about 3 or 4 months ~ assuming you’ve been posting regularly.

Well, that’s it, my bloggy friend.  Thank you for taking the time to read these steps.  Feel free to chime in on any of them.  In the future, well be offering additional tools to help you keep organized, on track and productive.

In the meantime, Blog on!

2010 Blogging Plan: Part 1 of 5 – Business Goals

2010 Blogging Plan: Part 2 of 5 – Positioning

2010 Blogging Plan: Part 3 of 5 – Engagement

2010 Blogging Plan: Part 4 of 5 – Content Plan


One Comment on 2010 Blogging Plan: Part 5 of 5

  1. admin on Wed, 13th Jan 2010 1:48 pm
  2. Awesome 5-part blogging plan. Tracking and measuring are so powerful. I mean, how can we know where we’re going, if we first haven’t taken a snapshot of where we are?! I hadn’t thought to count how many posts I’ve written. When I count and see that I wrote 51 posts for Writer’s Fun Zone (http://www.writersfunzone.com/blog) and 11 post for the Breakfast Blogging Club in 2009, I say, “Wow!”

    Thanks Cheryl for co-creating this fun blogging environment for us!