Thursday, May 4, 2017

Going Pro: Ceci N'est Pas Mon Blog

This is not my blog.  Not Hurricane Images’s blog.  The blog belongs to Hurricane Images, but it is not our blog, which you can find here in its nascent form.

Why isn’t this my blog?  Because you are not my client.  My number one rule for posting on Hurricane Images’s blog is that the content is for my clients and potential clients.  So many photographers and videographers post info for their peers—which is great, and often more enjoyable for the writer… and it can even help with raising your website’s SEO.  But it’s not an effective marketing approach.  If you want your blog to be a marketing tool, write for your clients.

Blogs aren’t simply a marketing tool, though.  They are the product that needs to be marketed.  There are tens of thousands of photographer-bloggers.  Maybe thirty of the top writers are easily discovered via search engines and the like.  The bottom thirty-thousand writers feel like they’re toiling in obscure darkness, read only by trolling bots.  If you’re going to go to the trouble of writing, promote your work.  Cross market your blog.  Announce it on your website, Facebook page, Twitter, or whatever other social media platforms you use.  Visit forums and (when appropriate) let people know you’ve talked about that issue on your blog.  List your blog on your email signature. 

Keep track of which posts get the most visits (almost all blogging platforms offer this).  Let the most popular items guide your blog, but not dictate its direction.  Gear review is often the most read posts on this blog, but I use them sparingly because that's not what I want to be known for.  From time to time, re-publish your top posts.

A few tips to keep in mind.
  • Content is king; make good content
  • Reference and link to your web pages often
  • Link to other folks good works, too.  You can summarize if you credit and link.  
  • Don't have your image right at the top of your page.  It looks great but search engines can't read them.  
  • When you link, use the title of the page as the link (rather than writing “here”); it’s better SEO optimization
  • Optimize your images; they should have titles and company name
  • Post frequently – twice weekly or more in the beginning
  • If you post infrequently (less than weekly) disable the auto date function. 
  • Never apologize for not posting frequently; you don’t owe your reader anything beyond good content
  • If someone engages/comments, engage back.  Immediately.

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