If you’ve been blogging as long as I have – coming up on four years posting three to five times weekly about professional topics, you have a love affair with your blog. You may also have an intense dislike for the commitment required to keep at it.
How do you think marketers regard your blog?
The Age of Sponsored Content
Sponsored content is replacing blogger authenticity. There’s a race to see who’ll win. My vote is on the former because no more can marketers depend on a blog or two plus some social media channels to earn the ROI they expect.
- Brokers are now licensing blogger content for paid fees.
- Influencer campaigns are being bought and launched to get a traffic boost with solid content.
- Native advertising is appearing in all channels, and you need to look thrice to discern the difference.
Long-Term Bloggers Are On Top
What that means for bloggers with a solid track record of authentic content is an opportunity to finally monetize. I know this to be true, because it just happened to me. There are new monetization opportunities for bloggers; however, you need to put your eye on the prize to ensure you’re among the chosen:
1. Regard your numbers highly. What does that mean? Rather than poo at Klout, Twitter followers, Facebook likes and friends, and Google+ circles, regard these numbers as a way to quantify your credibility.
Before anyone gets his or her panties in a bundle, let me explain. No, influence is not scored by a number; however, to the marketer or brand ambassador NOT in the know, the higher the number, the more influential you are as a blogger, right?
Think on this a moment…you may have purchased followers and you’re sprouting 10,000 peeps on Twitter following you. These followers aren’t legit; anyone can check to see, so that doesn’t help you. Be authentic and organic in your numbers from hard work to earn every single digit to your credit.
Transparency Is The Name of the Game
2. Be authentic and true to your school (whatever that means). We do know what “be authentic” means, though, right? When you write #RockHot content, peeps want to share it, no question. You’re not phony, and you’re not zigging through the motions – you’re zagging, and that’s GOOD.
3. Engage in blogging communities. Safety in numbers, right? Yes, to an extent. When you write for #RockHot communities like SteamFeed.com, join a ton of tribes on Triberr (there’s a solid reason for that), or engage with other growing blogger communities, then your brand and reputation precede you. This is all part of the social branding journey. (I hate when people put the word “social” in front of everything and try to create a new term, but in this case it fully works to describe personal branding the social way.)
4. Look for Opportunities. Let’s look at two clichés and negate one of them. The early bird gets the worm. YES. Good things come to those who wait. NO. In the social sphere, you need to be a first mover, early adopter and touter of the next new thing. When you are and you share it right, then you boost your brand exponentially.
5. Be a thought leader first. Did you see my post about Jeremiah Owyang? What a gem of a visionary and thought leader. When you listen and read about him, he’s the most down-to-earth and approachable gentleman you’ll find, and so freaking cool. Just go emulate him already and see how the influence marketing thing unfolds thereafter.
Nahh. It’s totally hard work and requires tons of daily dedication and tough skin to endure and ensure you continuously grow on your professional journey. Ask me!