31 March 2009

Blogging Tips : What’s Your Bread and Butter?

this guest post is by Dot Com Dud

Bread & Butter.png

In business, the phrase “Bread & Butter” is used to describe something that is core to the success of a business. A good example is a lawyer for whom divorce cases bring in the majority of their income, those cases are their Bread & Butter. Without these cases they would be struggling to fill their workload and bring in an income.

When it comes to posting quality content for your blog you should be careful not to forget your Bread & Butter either. In the case of blogs posts your Bread & Butter are usually posts which are regular features that tie-in to the core topic of the blog. By identifying these posts you can make your work as a blogger a lot easier as well as making your blog’s appeal to readers much more consistent.

Why are Bread & Butter posts important?

Bread & Butter posts help identify what your blog is about, they are the kind of posts that your regular readers will come to expect from your blog. These posts can become your blog’s trademark because readers will associate them with your blog and they will in turn become a part of your brand.

Another advantage of Bread & Butter posts is that you usually wont need a flash of inspiration to write a Bread & Butter post. You’ll know when they need to be posted and what they need to be about, so the hard part is done for you. Not only do they give your blog structure but they will help shape your work flow and the other posts around them.

Examples of Bread & Butter?

A well known example of Bread & Butter posts are income reports on Make Money Online blogs. These work because they appeal to the targeted audience of the MMO niche and they can be relied upon to get the attention of readers.

Some other examples of common Bread & Butter posts on blogs of different topics include;

Progress Updates - These don’t have to be on Make Money blogs only, there are a lot of personal development blogs that would be ideal for regular progress updates.

Regular Reviews - Movies, weekly TV shows, sporting matches etc. Anything that occurs often or on a regular schedule is ideal for posts like this and can be easily used as a basis for an entire blog.

Reoccurring Prizes - If you give away prizes on a regular basis, you can utilise these to create Bread & Butter posts. For each competition you can include an announcement posts, a sponsor “shout out”, a prize update (planned from the start) and naturally the prize drawing. Contests can also feed into progress update posts if they are long running or have specif criteria for the entrants to be informed of (such as a points scoreboard).

Weekly Roundups - Not everyone agrees with the value of having regular posts consisting solely of link lists to your week’s best posts or news from around your niche but they are common enough and usually become a staple for the blog that use them.

Whats your Bread & Butter?

The answer to this question will be different for almost every blog out there, what is important is knowing how to identify the kinds of posts that make up your core blog content.

Once you’ve done this you can start planning your content around them and focus on what makes them successful, so that you can adapt this into new potential Bread & Butter posts.

Ask Yourself:

  • Which posts are the most popular? Follow your readers!
  • Look at your categories and see which have the most content, these posts already make up your core content
  • Are you repeatedly posting about the same topic, why not make them a permanent feature?

You can also run a survey with your readers to find out their favorite posts and what they’d like to see more of. It’s important to remember that a potential post must have longevity if it’s going to become reoccurring content.

In closing, I have only written about the Bread & Butter concept in regards to blog posts but there are plenty of other areas that this idea can be applied to. There are Bread & Butter advertisers, traffic sources, affiliate programs and more but the goal is the same; find out what works, what is reliable and repeatable, then use it to your advantage!

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