Anyone who knows me knows that my mantra is, “Blog, blog, BLOG!” When I start work with a new client and I’m asked, “What should I do about my website?” whether we’re designing a whole new site or just giving a facelift to a current one, I still recommend a consistent regimen of blogging.
You can verify this yourself. We’ve all seen less than pretty sites that rank high in search engines, and beautifully-designed sites that don’t. The difference often is that one has a consistent stream of fresh, new content while the others do not.
I frequently hear the same issues repeated. “I just don’t have time to blog. I have a business to run.” “I don’t know what to write.” “I don’t like writing.” Scott Yates, an award-winning writer and the founder of BlogMutt, has solutions that are helping businesses just like yours fit blogging into their schedule. Read on!
Before BlogMutt came along, you were an award-winning writer in both New York and Colorado. It stands to say you have a real appreciation of the written word. How did that tie into your decision to launch BlogMutt?
I knew from the business world how important writing was, and I knew from the writing world the special challenges of dealing with writers. I looked around and saw some sites that were great for writers, but had no sustainable business model. I also saw sites that made money, but treated writers like third-world serfs. I knew if we could treat writers with respect and build a business that worked for all sides, we could have a real hit.
One of the major problems with “content mills” is that for cheap, quick content many such companies hire overseas. You require your writers to live and pay taxes here in the United States. Why do you make that such a prominent case?
Part of it is just practical — there are some fairly complicated rules about sending money overseas. There’s a list, the OFAC list I think it’s called, and if you send money to someone on that list the department of Homeland Security can shut you down. When we started, we just didn’t have the money to figure that out.
Now that we’re bigger we could afford to figure that out, but what we’ve found is that it’s a good quality control. There are certainly some great writers from Canada and the UK, so that probably costs us some good writers, but there are enough good writers from here in the states to meet the needs of all our customers. We do have customers from around the world, and what they have in common is that they want to sell in the US, so they like the fact that our writers are all in the US.
When it comes to “ghostwriting” for blog content, I think many feel like it’s cheating. Of course, I disagree. What would you say to someone who knows they need regular blog content but don’t have the time or writing style to write it themselves?
An analogy that works for me is this: It used to be that it was kind of like cheating if you hired someone to do your taxes. Now everyone either hires someone, or uses an online tool. I think that same kind of shift is happening now with business blogs. People are realizing that it’s a business blog with business objectives, so they can kind of let go of the ego part of thinking that the blog has to be their personal musings.
For professionals like coaches, therapists and even professional writers, how often should they be blogging, at minimum for the greatest exposure?
In general, if you aren’t blogging at least once per week Google thinks of your site as essentially a static site that it doesn’t need to review. Also, if a potential client looks at your blog and it’s two or three weeks (or months) out of date, they may think that you got hit by a bus or that you are no longer really looking for new business.
Is it possible to blog too much? I think for a solo-practitioner professional, once a week is fine.
One other small thing about this topic: We’ve heard from customers many times that they actually write more on their own after they hire BlogMutt. I think that’s because we take care of the meat-and-potatoes posts with the keywords, etc., and that frees people up to just write the posts that they enjoy writing. Because they don’t HAVE to write, then writing is more fun and they do it more often.
How has social media helped you spread the word about BlogMutt?
I think it’s helped us some, but really the blog is the cornerstone for us. Social media is really just a way to drive people toward the blog. We do have one social media feature, the WOOF, but then that becomes a blog post, too.
To learn more about Scott Yates and how his services can help build your business visit BlogMutt today. And tell ’em you heard about BlogMutt here!
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