Today, I spoke with Brian Clark, who is known for his award winning Copyblogger blog.  Brian has some great knowledge in the blogging arena and shares a lot of his secrets and thoughts today in this interview.  He talks about the common mistakes people make when writing and commenting on blog posts, the most important parts of a blog post, his marketing strategy and more.

What are the top three biggest mistakes you’ve seen people make when writing blog posts? What about commenting on your blog?

Probably the top 3 mistakes I see are:

  1. Content that lacks true and unique value to the reader.
  2. Good content with poor headlines.
  3. No real model for translating content into a return on investment, whether that be money or some other goal.

Comments that drive me crazy are the one’s that demonstrate the commenter didn’t read or didn’t understand the post… all too common.

Judging by the amount of success you’ve had blogging, how long do you think it would have taken to achieve that same amount of success without your blog? Why?

Honestly, I don’t think I would have achieved the same level of success. I’ve been producing online content for over 10 years, so it’s just my natural approach. Even when I used pay-per-click between 2001-2005 it was still part of a content strategy. But if you put the effort into blogging, you don’t need to pay for traffic AND you’ve got an asset with the site that becomes more valuable as time passes.

What are the three most important parts of a blog post a blogger should try and focus on and perfect?

  1. Headline
  2. Opening
  3. Unique Reader Value

Many people get 3. Correct and think it’s enough, but then find that very few people consume the content because they never started reading/listening/watching at all of quickly gave up due to a non-compelling opening.

What was your marketing strategy to get your first 1,000 RSS readers?

Create the most compelling free content possible that served a foundational role for the life of the blog. I call this cornerstone content, others call it flagship or pillar content. This gives you an immediate return in subscribers, but also becomes an anchor in the search engines for the core focus of your site.

What is the future for writing copy in 5 years? Will it be blogging still or something new?

Blogging is really about content marketing…creating stuff that attracts the audience you’re after. That means it’s really about content management, an whether you’re producing text, audio or video, it needs to be easy to deal with. So in that sense, blogging isn’t going anywhere. Whether or not we continue to call it blogging is another issue.

Brian Clark is a new media writer/producer, entrepreneur, and recovering attorney. A ten-year-veteran of Internet publishing, Clark has racked up millions of dollars in sales thanks to a mix of online educational content and direct response copywriting. He built three successful offline businesses using online marketing techniques before switching to a producer model that involves building, monetizing, and occasionally selling online media properties. His blog Copyblogger has over 50,000 subscribers and is one of the most popular in the world according to Technorati.