Why You Should Update Your Blog Content

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Change is the only constant. – Heraclitus

Let’s face it, today content is money. Blogs are content engines for most writers. They’re integral parts of our branding and marketing. (And if they aren’t, you’re doing this wrong.) But so many field experts simply puke their content onto the digital page, promote the crap out of it, and then never look back – an act that is almost as bad as not producing content at all.

Here are 5 reasons why you should refresh old content on a semi regular basis.

  1. Google loves a shiny new thing.

That Google prefers regularly updated content is proven. There are dozens of studies to back up the validity of my statement. Here’s one. Everyone know that if Google’s affection with your blog decreases, it can be damned hard for you to win it over again.

Why does Google get giggly over new/updated content?

  • Updated content is longer. You know the old adage: size matters. Well, for Google, size does matter. Lengthier content regularly published indicts to Google little bots that you are a substantive and knowledgeable field expert.
  • Because, as we’ve pointed out, content is king, content is cash, and if Google likes anything it likes to be king of the cash.

Changing, adding or removing parts of your blog posts are ways to effectively implement your content marketing strategy.  Google notices your savvy ways and bumps your ranking. Pretty good deal to get immediate rewards for just giving your content a tune-up.

  1. New stuff, am I right?

A lifetime promotional deal is not really a deal when you get right down to it.You are a business. Your content is often a large part of that business. And when your business introduces new promotions like an ebook or a video course or a new blog post, you must link to it in the old content. It’s called working smarter, not harder to reach your readers.

Not being timely with your updates can equal losing moolah, and sometimes it isn’t chump change.

But it isn’t just new stuff you need to be concerned with. You also need to go back and eliminate old information, products, or posts. For instance, one of my books went out of print a couple of years ago. It didn’t make sense to have broken links to a book that no longer exists. So I needed to go back through my content and make sure to remove those links and clean up any promotions of the product from my site.

  1. Readers’ time is valuable.

Don’t waste your reader’s time by talking about something that no longer exists. You’ve been a reader; you’ve been to a site that all the information is old, links are broken, and nothing is updated, right? Bet you were frustrated. Bottom line: it’s never good to frustrate your audience (a.k.a. your buyers).

Making old content go poof is the easiest way to show your readers your care about them and their time. While it’s true people remember negative impressions more than positive ones, never giving them a negative impression certainly makes it easier for them to remember a good one, right?

  1. Constant evolution.

Content, information, is constantly changing. Forget a better user experience…who wants to be the person with the old information?

We all write dated material. There’s nothing wrong with that (although you should try to keep dated material at a minimum and balanced with evergreen material). Writing a brilliant article about “The Best SEO Techniques in 2016” is all well and good except, before you know it, it’s suddenly 2017 and that article is old news.

Change it up. update it by replacing 2016 with 2017 through little tweaks in content (like new links and research material) and the different images. One, using updated and different images should be a staple to marketing any product or content. You never know what will catch different peoples’ attention. Two, you may find a better image than the one you originally used. There is nothing wrong with going “Oh hey, yeah, that works so much better!”

And what happens if your whole brand underwent a change? If you had old screen shots or logos in your content, you will definitely need to update those.

  1. In with the new readers.

Q&A time: How often do you personally scroll back through a blog’s content just to find what that field expert may have posted 5 years ago when they started their blog? Okay, I don’t know about you but I rarely go back more than a few months to a year to see what I might have missed. Unless that business posts their old material (which you should be doing btw) regularly, it just isn’t prudent for me to waste my time. But think about this: what if half of all your new readers really really need to see some of that content? You know, it’s just perfect for them; just what they are looking for.

The whole point of generating content is to build your expertise with readers. If they don’t know you’re an expert simply because they don’t have time to dedicate to stalking you and your product, how are you supposed to be considered an expert?

 

Look, it’s important to update your old content regularly. Secondly, it’s really not that difficult to do. And, third, you’ve put this much work in making yourself more viable to your audience (you know, like reading up on how to be more viable to your audience in this blog post) so why aren’t you?

 

Image of a redheaded woman in a black leather jacket. She has her hands held up in the American Sign Language sign for 'I love you.'BC Brown is the author of three novels and has participated in multiple short story anthologies. Having committed almost every ‘bad deed’ in the book of ‘How to Be An Author’, she now strives to educate others through humor and simple instruction.

Books: A Touch of DarknessA Touch of Madness ◘ Sister Light (out of print)
Anthologies: Fracas: A Collection of Short FrictionQuixotic: Not Everyday Love StoriesA Chimerical World: Tales of the Seelie Court

Coming Soon: Karaoke Jane

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How to Balance Between Personality and Brand

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Just be you. Somebody is bound to like it. -BC Brown

 

As writers we walk a fine tightrope over a pit of starving lions. Let’s forget about all the things we know we’re supposed to be – wordsmith, promoter, editor side-show barker – and go onto the things most people don’t think about. People want Professionalism out of authors. People also want sass out of authors. A certain degree of sass seems to imply wit, and fellow authors and readers can’t seem to get enough. But what happens when you’re a writer like me whose sass tends more towards crass?
It’s no secret… I have a foul mouth. I like to push buttons and get reactions from people. My mother will attest, I’ve been this way my whole life. That panache for getting attention (especially with words) makes me a good writer or, at the very least, an entertaining one. I’m also a queen of snark. Biting sarcasm is rarely absent from my verbal repertoire. And when it is… just know that I’m thinking it regardless of what is coming out of my mouth.
Walking a tightrope between being considered sassy and witty and rude and crass, however, is not the easiest task. The circles in my life that ebb and flow from sass to crass are in constant flux, it seems, and I’m forced to check myself before I wreck myself often. Even here, on my blog, I write, read, and re-read what gets posted. Why? Well, to avoid offending. But it’s often that, while trying not to seem unprofessional, my red pen of death slashes through much of my personality – the sassy, often crass, wench (I hope) most people know and love.
What’s a girl to do? Deny thyself and refuse… oh, wait, that’s Shakespeare. OK, so maybe not that, but you get my point. When does sass become crass? Many would agree that a snarky, word-slinging writer is great. Who doesn’t like a sense of humor after all? But there are often times when humor crosses a line into perverse or offensive. [Although the term “offensive” often bothers me. The Dictionary defines it as: 1) to irritate, annoy or anger, 2) to affect disagreeably, 3) to violate or transgress (such as moral law), 4) to hurt or cause pain to, or 5) to cause to fall into sinful ways (in Bibilical terms). – In this sense, everything could be deemed offensive. I choose to smoke so, Biblically, I’m offensive; I bake a pie someone doesn’t like the taste of so I “affect their sense of taste disagreeably”; or I chew with my mouth open so I irritate my niece. It seems everything is offensive based on each person’s individual likes and dislikes, pet peeves and petty annoyances. But that’s enough of this rant for now.]
How is an author who believes they are professional in that they – 1) take their work seriously, 2) obey by the rules of professional behavior like not ripping apart a reviewer who might not have liked their story, 3) hold their work up to the highest standard prior to publication, and 4) constantly try to learn how to better themselves as a writer – supposed to balance their humor with their business manner?
As many can tell, I’ve recently become a more prolific freaking obsessed blogger. I’ve actually come to enjoy it in a way I never thought possible before. Sometimes those blogs are informative about writing. Some are fun things I’ve noticed and how I can tie them back to my writing. Because, face it, that’s what I’m about… the writing. And some are straight up snark. Hell, even those are often tied back to writing but maybe a little looser than other articles. Take interviews, for example.
I no likey-likey interviews. It’s not much of a secret. Why don’t I like them? They’re boring! And if I could make that word any bigger to emphasis it I would. Author interviews consist of the same questions. Every so often an interviewer comes up with something new or unique I haven’t answered before. But, most of the time, the questions are as follows: 1) Tell us about yourself, 2) Tell us about your book, 3) What inspires you, or Why do you write, 4) When did you know you wanted to be a writer, or When did you start writing, 5) Do you have anything coming up you’d like to share. And tah-dah the questions you are always asked in an interview. I know I get bored out of my fricking mind answering the same questions all the time. So much so that I have standardized answers to these questions I keep and tweak when sending back to my interviewers. I’m so bored that I’ve began creating snark responses for these answers. But that’s not fair to the interviewers I think. Especially since my answers don’t inform hopefully entertain but definitely don’t educate their readers as to my books. With a little luck they make people laugh or I’ll take a snicker, I’m not greedy and click over to my blog where they can learn more about me and my books etc. Of course, they may not. People want to be hooked. But don’t readers get sick of my answering the same questions – rinse and repeat? I know I do. The blogs I follow showcase any of the same writers; they all ask those writers the same questions, and I read the same thing. So what do I do? I skip reading on the days those blogs feature interviews. I know, it’s bad of me but I do. Or I only skim them briefly, looking for something that is not boring in them.
But, B.C., you host interviews too!
Yes; yes, I do. From time to time. If you notice, however, I don’t do it often. I hope my questions are somewhat unique. Naturally, I get the dull preliminaries out of the way but I like to move on. Or I try to insert additional wit into the interview (jokes etc) if the author chooses only to answer the basic questions about themselves and their books. What I love though is the author who plays with me. Get your mind out of the gutter! The one who has a humor of their own and has fun with the answers. Those people I don’t mind hosting; they give me and my readers more than perfunctory answers whoring their latest work. Don’t get me wrong, I love to pimp out my friends but I need more generous workers. lol
I digress. The point I’m trying to make is that, even in interviews, it is difficult to walk the line between being a professional and selling yourself and your writing and being who you are – sometimes sass, most often crass, in my case. Teetering between the two can be amusing, is often stressful, and is most likely to get me in big heap o’trouble at some point. Do I care? A little, yeah. But, mostly, naw.

Image of a redheaded woman in a black leather jacket. She has her hands held up in the American Sign Language sign for 'I love you.'BC Brown is the author of three novels and has participated in multiple short story anthologies. Having committed almost every ‘bad deed’ in the book of ‘How to Be An Author’, she now strives to educate others through humor and simple instruction.

Books: A Touch of DarknessA Touch of Madness ◘ Sister Light (out of print)
Anthologies: Fracas: A Collection of Short FrictionQuixotic: Not Everyday Love StoriesA Chimerical World: Tales of the Seelie Court

Coming Soon: Karaoke Jane

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