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The last few months I’ve been touring a talk around Knutsford, Wilmslow and Trafford on Successful Blogging for Business

My oh My have I been getting nostalgic about my journalist days!

For those that don’t know me personally I thought i’d fill you in on what I used to do pre-Altrincham HQ and pre my Social Media biz

Designer Magazine

Designer Magazine

Back in June 1999 I set up what at the time was one of the first ever Manchester Music websites. I called it Designer Magazine, a pretentious idea based around the Manic Street Preachers song Design for life – the idea was we designed our readers life’s through music and culture.

The irony of the website name was the design was terrible, it was done on a basic dreamweaver template, but you couldn’t argue with the traffic and before long it was regularly getting 10-15,000 readers a week; I was attracting interviews with the likes of Bill Wyman from the Rolling Stones, George Galloway, Scissor Sisters, Black Eyed Peas, Noel Fielding of the Mighty Boosh, Muse, Alan Carr, My Chemical Romance, Elbow – a who’s who of music, television and politics.

Despite being a paid journalist for publications out in the USA I was well aware that online was where it was at and that ultimately longterm more people would read online than they would in a printed magazine to 50,000 people (especially as seen as my main freelance jobs at the time was a Chicago lads mag, think FHM rather than top shelf, with 3D glasses – the music interviews were great, but girls in bikini’s won every time for the readers)

Alan Carr meets Designer Magazine

Alan Carr meets Designer Magazine

So highlights?

Coming out of journalistic retirement to interview Jedward ­čÖé

I always joke that my highlight was being able to switch in mindset from a 45 minute heavily political interview with George Galloway in the morning to then interviewing S Club Juniors in the afternoon

But the Real highlight?

The figures speak for themselves
* Most Read Blog – 551,567 views
* Top 10 Blogs – all read by over 85.000 people
* Most Viewed Video – 32,051 views
* Top 10 Videos – all viewed by over 3,000 people
* The website still gets 27,000 page views a week

And that readers is why blogging is important for me … and why as soon as the Altrincham HQ website was launched I knew I had to blog every single week.

I ┬áalso knew I wanted to blog with the same passion as a rock & roll journalist and draw on my own influences and passions rather than rewriting Seth Godin blogs (the guys a genius – but trust me when I say – read “The Purple Cow” and you’ll look at business coaches / marketing guru’s blogs in an entirely different light – you’ll realise its rewritten, regurgiatated, reisssued advice for people who haven’t read┬áSeth Godin)

At the moment for Altrincham HQ I blog about Social Media, Altrincham, Town Centre issues and small business marketing, but I still blog about music marketing to help unsigned and DIY musicians…in fact my┬álast 2 blogs have been shared by Tom Robinson (80s singer songwriter and Michael Brandvold aka mr online marketing for Britney Spears and the rock band Kiss)

Not a week goes by where I don’t get emails or calls from businesses who’ve read my blogs and want to know how I can help their small business

Over the last 6 months there’s been a trend where a lot of my Social Media training sessions have involved blogging brainstorming sessions to bring out the real passion and substance of small businesses.

Why blog?
What to blog about?
Where to draw inspiration from?
How to put your personal stamp on to a business blog?

Would love to help with blogging for your business – call 07806 774279 or email

Alex McCann

Author Alex McCann

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