I’ve had a lot of recent conversations about blogging and the discussions have solidified what I’ve known to be true for a while now: there are two approaches to blogging and they’re quite different from each other.
The Two Approaches
Blogging for SEO: Approach number one is to blog for SEO purposes. There are tools and programs to help you load your blogging efforts with keywords and phrases that help your posts get discovered by search engines. It’s a deliberate and scientific approach to blogging.
Blogging for Credibility: The other approach is blogging for credibility and authority. With this approach you’re not concerned about the SEO so much as being a thought leader in the eyes of the people who are reading your posts.
There are several practical differences between the two approaches:
SEO approach: You’re mostly focused on acquiring new readers.
Credibility approach: You’re mostly focused on keeping the readers you have.
SEO approach: You’re blogging on topics that people are searching for.
Credibility approach: You’re blogging on topics that you want to create for your audience.
SEO approach: You see your blogging efforts more like science.
Credibility approach: You see your blogging efforts more like art.
SEO approach: You’re happy when a reader signs up for something.
Credibility approach: You’re happy when a reader comments on the post.
So which is right? It depends. What do you want your blog to do for you? Why are you blogging? Are you mostly trying to generate traffic, leads, and sales? If so you’re probably going to like the SEO approach. If, however, you’re trying to earn attention by building a loyal following or audience, then the credibility approach is more likely what’s right for you.
If you’re an artist the scientific approach will feel too regimented and impersonal. If you’re a scientist the artisitic approach will seem like a waste of time and effort.
Know yourself, know your blogging goals, and then decide which approach fits you better. It will help you in the long run.
Photo credit: Leo Reynolds