By Joe Pulizzi published October 20, 2011 Est Read Time: 2 min

Blogging? 10 Questions to Ask Before You Blog

Blogging - Old SchoolOne of the most frequent questions I receive while traveling is about blogging. The questions revolve around how to get started, what to talk about, and even what software to use.

My questions back to them usually startle the person, because so many start thinking about what they want to say, other than how they can impact the reader. Here are a few…

  1. Who would the primary reader (subscriber) of your blog be?
  2. What do you want to tell them? (what’s your story?)
  3. Do you understand the key informational needs of that person?  What are their pain points? 
  4. Are you hanging out online where your customers are at? Do you or can you make a target hit list of blogs or sites where your customers frequent online?
  5. Are you leaving comments that add to the online conversation on the blogs you cover? (see Blog Commenting Strategy)
  6. Do you have a firm grasp on the types of keywords to focus on that your customers are searching for? (see Google’s Keyword Tool)
  7. Do you follow those keywords using Google Alerts or watch their usage on Twitter? (to find the influencers in your market)
  8. Can you commit to blogging at least two times per week? (content consistency is key)
  9. What is your ultimate goal in starting a blog? In one year from when you start blogging, how will the business be different?
  10. How will the execution process work within your company (see Content Marketing Workflow) and how will you market the blog?
  11. BONUS – How will you integrate the blog with the rest of your marketing? How can the blog make everything else you are doing better?  Can it?

These are the general starter questions (for both businesses and even individuals). Yes, a bit overwhelming for first timers, but necessary.

The majority of blogs out there don’t make it. The worst thing you can do as a business is start a consistent dialogue with your customers and then stop. Better not to do one at all.

And remember, blogging is just a tool. That said, it can be a very powerful tool to consistently communicate valuable, compelling content on a consistent basis. If you are ready to get started, here are six steps to successful blogging.

Have an additional question?  If so, please list it below.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Author: Joe Pulizzi

Joe Pulizzi is the bestselling author of seven content marketing books including his latest, Content Inc. He has founded four companies, including the Content Marketing Institute (CMI), and his newest venture, The Tilt. His podcast series, This Old Marketing with Robert Rose, has generated millions of downloads from over 150 countries. He is also the author of The Random Newsletter, delivered to thousands every two weeks. His Foundation, The Orange Effect, delivers speech therapy and technology services to children in 35 states. Follow him on Twitter @JoePulizzi.

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