Business blogging is an optimal strategy for creating new content to help with search engine optimization, engaging clients, and showcasing your expertise. It’s also not something you should start without the willingness to make a commitment to it.
The primary goal of a business blog is to gain followers, which are considered warm leads for your small business. However, you must give them something to follow, hence the commitment you need to make to this valuable marketing tool. Below are some strategies to make your blog the one people want to follow.
1. Set business goals for your blog.
A business blog is a tool to help you grow your business. Clear goals and a defined target audience will help with determining content and direction for the blog. As you grow your blog following and your business, the content and design of your business blog will grow with you. (Tip: Use an editorial calendar to manage content.)
2. Before you post your first entry, develop a list of topics to cover.
Publishing your list of topics will keep your followers on the hook for what is coming around the corner. For example, if there are five steps to developing a successful marketing plan, offer step one the first week, step two the following, etc. Keep them coming back for more. By coming up with a list of possible topics, you decrease your chances of struggling with what to write about. Creating a list helps boost the creative process so you look from a long-term perspective when developing content. It also helps you plan a linking strategy with your blog. See the link to an editorial calendar in #1 above? In my master list (or editorial calendar) I can see, at a quick glance, every time I’ve written about blogging and use these past blogs as links in my current blog, making my content even more valuable.
3. Consistency is key.
Post often but not too often. Blogging isn’t like Twitter, the micro-blogging site. Unless your blog is to engage your employees, posting two to three times a week is optimal. If you can manage daily posts without compromising content, that’s even better. If you can tie your posts into a schedule and catchy theme, that’s fantastic. For example, Two for Tuesdays, where you might offer two helpful tips associated with your topic.
4. Host guest bloggers.
Everyone loves a celebrity guest. As you build your network, consider dedicating one day a week to using a guest blogger. Find someone of influence in your community and share their story. It’s fun and changes things up a bit. As another option, consider inviting a colleague to post about what it’s like to work for your company. Audiences love to see the personal side of a business.
5. Include links and photos.
Links and photos can help with search engine optimization and social media promotions. Include internal and external links to resources that support your topic. Take a picture of a client using your product or service and write about their experience in your blog or invite them as a guest blogger one week, and ask them to write about. This strategy may require extra research and work on your part, but the payoff is well worth it.
Blogging is a great strategy to follow when you want to show your human side and build relationships with your clients. One of the things that makes a small, locally owned business special is the fact that hard-working, awesome people own them. Blogging gives you the opportunity to show that side of yourself.
Learn step-by-step strategies for business blogging with A Guide to Successful Business Blogging.