Blogging has quickly become the platform of choice when creating content and trying to build a relationship with an audience. As simple as the concept might seem, many brands and entrepreneurs are still getting it wrong. Fortunately, there are content creation and blogging experts that can help these companies better manage their messaging and outreach process. Such efforts end up not only make them look better, but to also help build a powerful and respectful brand in the process.
This is exactly what we will be talking about in our latest installment of Meet the Bloggers interview series, as we connect with George Schildge, who has been working alongside many top CEOs and brands to help them improve their messaging, branding, and outreach process to audiences around the world. Learn more about George’s business and blogging efforts below.
1.) Please tell us about yourself and how you got into blogging?
My name is George Schildge, and I’m the CEO of Matrix Marketing Group, a full-service performance-driven marketing agency. I tend to work closely with other CEOs, helping them craft and communicate their company’s vision and brand. Our goal is to turn that vision into a long-term strategy for pioneering new and existing markets for the company to dominate.
I also meet with sales and marketing leadership to help them measure and analyze productivity and effectiveness. I work with our clients to ensure success, help them form a product roadmap, create market positioning, as well as sync with CFOs to determine budget trade-offs with a goal of continually improving results. This collaboration across the entire management team ensures our clients determine true ways to grow revenue with a crucial long-term perspective in mind.
My experience includes working at IBM, Ohmeda, Sun Microsystems, CoCreate Software, Baan Business Systems, and Matrix Marketing Group. During these affiliations, I’ve gained experience in developing, launching and managing business and marketing strategies and funding plans for products and services. I’m also involved with Startup Grind and TechStars, both powered by Google for Entrepreneurs.
I started blogging for three reasons:
- As a college professor, I’m a student of business and marketing. I love to learn about the latest marketing trends and tools, and I wanted to help other businesses by sharing the knowledge I’ve gained throughout my career.
- Running an agency for 15 years, I get a lot of repeated questions. Blogging allows me to answer those questions easily without having to field it on the phone with each of my clients individually.
- Finally, I wanted to help my agency grow through topic cluster content, which goes beyond traditional keywords and long tail keywords. Competition to be seen in today’s search engine results is intense, and as a result, SEO practices have evolved to a new model being leveraged by many content-focused websites. By focusing on topic cluster content, I’ve seen a huge improvement with my content strategy. On my blog, I wanted to create a bank of knowledge that not only informs others, but also builds our credibility on search engines.
2.) What is the focus of your blog and why did you choose that niche?
We try to focus our blog around three main topics in the marketing field: Strategy, Talent, and Technology. We believe that when you focus on improving one (or all) of these aspects of your business, you and your company will experience greater success. Through our blog, Matrix Marketing Group helps companies fill in these gaps by providing guidance and expertise to our clients.
We organize our topics by breaking them down one step further into the head, heart, and hands. The head being content that includes thought leadership topics, the heart includes customer stories and case studies, and finally the hands include “how-to” content.
3.) How are you currently monetizing your blog traffic?
Our blog at Matrix Marketing Group plays a major role in the agency by attracting subscribers and building a database to generate leads. It is designed to help visitors find success in their personal and business lives.
For our business, we choose not to include ads on our blog. To ensure we’re on track with our goals, we measure everything using a marketing automation platform. With more than 75 data points, it measures everything from subscribers to conversion down the marketing funnels.
Here’s a quick rundown of some of our metrics:
- Blog comments
- Bylined articles/guest posts
- Content downloads
- Content downloads
- Inbound links
- Media placements
- Blog shares
- Blog page views
- Social visits
- Visitors-to-lead ratio
- Visitors-to-subscribe ratio
4.) What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started blogging?
To be honest, I wish I had known more about the art of writing – of being able to articulate thoughts in a comprehensible way. I could pontificate all day, but I needed the skills to relay my ideas and thoughts on paper.
It’s important to tell a story to intrigue people and make them want more. It’s hard to write well, but I think it’s an essential part being a blogger. I wish I had realized its importance when I first started blogging.
5.) What are three blogs that you visit almost daily?
6.) Can you give us three recommended tools/services that you use with your blogging?
- BuzzSumo – I use this tool for content planning and curation. It allows me to gain insights on what topics and articles are being shared and engaged with most often.
- Grammarly – Grammar-free writing is a key part to building your credibility as a blogger. Even the smallest typos can cause a reader to click out of your page. I use Grammarly as a final way to ensure my writing is polished and ready for publishing.
- SEMRush & Moz Pro – I use both of these tools to manage my SEO strategy. They help me to build out my keyword strategy as well as allowing me to run competitive analyses to see where I rank among my competitors in the market.
7.) What advice would you have for someone who is just starting with their first blog?
I have two pieces of advice:
- Start writing every day, be consistent. Of course, it is hard at first, but that’s how I got started. I learned that the more you do it, the better your writing becomes.
- Read everything you can about your audience. Understand what they’re consuming and reading. Learn what “pains” they are experiencing and then determine how you can provide solutions for their pain. Instead of trying to sell to your readers, help. Be a resource to them and show them that you understand their needs.
8.) What’s the best advice or tip you’ve discovered about blogging since getting started?
a. SEO: You can write the best content in the world, but if no one can find it, it may as well not exist. I keep that in mind every time I sit down to write a blog post. Before I begin writing, I thoroughly research what keywords I should include and am sure to optimize my article with them in mind.
b. Know who you writing for. Understand your readers’ issues and try to provide them with a solution.
c. Know why are you writing. Define your goals and your purpose.
d. Watch your grammar, spelling, and all the technical details. It matters. Take the time to make sure it’s right, instead of taking the shortcut.
9.) If you only had $100 to start a new blog, how would you use it?
If you’re just getting started, I don’t think it’s necessary to spend money on your own website because there are so many great free platforms available, like Medium and Quora.
I would use the money to take an educational course and buy Ann Hadley’s book, Everybody Writes. Educating yourself on the latest happenings in your niche is so important to becoming a good, credible blogger.
10.) How can readers of the blog get in touch with you?
I’m also quite active on my blog, so feel free to check out our latest content at MatrixMarketingGroup.com/blog.
Thanks again George for taking the time to share his advice and story with the Blogging Tips community. If you would like to learn about other bloggers and how they are finding success online, be sure to read through our blogger interview series.