Think Of Your Blog As A Never Ending Blind Date

December 29, 2009 § Leave a comment

I hunted the web recently to discover some new business/marketing/advertising blogs and I am astonished (not at the content) but at how poorly these blogs are organized, how visually unappealing they are, and how much excess crap they allow on their sites. For being in “the business,” this is apalling.

These are easy fixes.

Think of your blog as a never ending blind date. Sound terrifying? Good. For many, your blog is the first place your potential customers/clients/friends meet you- and you only get one first impression.

A List of Blog Do’s and Don’ts
1. Do keep posts clear and consistant. Always use the same type font, size, and color when possible.

2. Don’t clutter your blog with ads. Yes, they make you money but they are a distraction to what you are really trying to sell- your ideas!

3. Do look classy. Avoid any ads or formats that flash or make noise, that pop up or scroll. It gives the reader the impression that your blog, and by association your content, is chaotic at best.

4. Do be careful when posting pictures of yourself. Be honest. If your look doesn’t want to make people buy your ideas- putting a large image of your face in the header isn’t doing you any favors. And being a “business man” doesn’t require hair gel- more often then not it makes you look like a greaseball.

5. Do be modest when deciding on the color scheme for your blog. Electric blue may be your favorite color however it isn’t necessarily your readers. Think about what you already know in terms of colors and marketing… pastels are too “soft” and anything neon sends the message that your “in business” (wink, wink). Also think about preexisting colors that sell- studies have shown red and yellow combined sell more then any other color combo… McDonald’s would agree.

6. Do be selective of your imagery. Sometimes no picture is better then  poor quality, irregular size, or generalized icons. There are millions of royalty free, rights managed stock images available. Train yourself to have a critical eye or get an unbiased opinion to confirm any suspicions. The same goes for #4.

7. Do make the most important information readily available. The longer a customer/client has to spend looking for your contact information, search box, or content links the more likely they are to give up and go someplace else.

8. Do reference your positive experiences and competitors- think of store fronts or other places you love to walk into. Why do you return? What do you like about them? What don’t you like about them?

My primary example is always Abercrombie and Fitch. I hate walking by this store in a shopping mall- it’s noisy, smelly, and swarming with sex crazed teenagers. Now, that isn’t to say that there is anything wrong with the company or it’s branding- it actually works very well for its target market. But at the same time, it has a very strong and opposite affect on every market it doesn’t target. Can you risk making a smelly impression on your future readers and clients?

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