Should your business have a blog? Of course it should. A blog is a great way to connect with your clients, increase search engine optimization (SEO) results and get your content found by key prospects. According to Inside View, research shows that B2B marketers who use blogs generate 67% more leads than those that do not. Other research shows that business websites that have a blog with more than 20 posts per month get five times more traffic than those who blog significantly less (less than four times per month). Blogging should be a critical part of your ongoing communications strategy.
Companies such as Whole Foods, IHG, Turkey Hill, Starbucks and even YouTube have blogs. Their content is consistent with the brands’ key messaging and includes thoughts from the CEO, recipes, and even tips on packing like a pro.
The goal of your blog should be to draw potential customers to your website and keep them interacting with your content.
Here are 10 more tips to creating a successful blog for your business:
- Create an editorial schedule: Don’t just wing it. A schedule of topics and deadlines will keep you focused and allow you to build up momentum and followers.
- Know your audience: Who are you trying to appeal to? Write for that audience. If you’re trying to reach customers, do not use the blog to talk about employees or company news. Write only about what is important to your prospects and what they want to read.
- Link your blog. Discussing key trends in your industry? Link back to previous article you wrote on the trend. Be sure to link articles, discussion posts, and tweets to your blog to increase traffic to the site.
- Create a blog roll: Add relevant industry blogs to a blog roll on your site to direct users to other viewpoints on the topics you are writing about. Add these blogs to the “blog roll” to show strategic alliance and to get on the radar of the bloggers you want to impress.
- Invite a guest: A blog serves as a personalized expression of your brand and will serve as a platform for the company. You can encourage employees and members to contribute to blog content. In turn, they will often help to promote their content and, as a result, bring more readers to your blog. You can also invite experts in your industry to guest blog. This is great for increasing backlinks and positive link juice!
- Share helpful information: Maintain a balance between posting unique content and sharing content from related blogs to your industry. All of your content should address the pain points of your target audience.
- Update frequently: Your blog should be updated at least several times a week and should continually include tips, articles, industry news, etc. For example, if you design office spaces, then post inspirational ideas and create a contest for a customer. Readers will repost and re-tweet contest information and provide feedback on the ideas.
- Integrate SEO keywords: You want your blog to make its way up the Google rankings. To do that, you need to insert Search Engine Optimization (SEO) words into the copy. Learn what keywords you want to rank for and optimize accordingly.
- Promote your blog: Tweet a link to your blog post, talk about it on Twitter, send out a teaser in your newsletter, mention it when you do interviews and put your blog address in your e-mail signature line.
- Keep tabs on your progress: Programs such as Google Analytics will provide key insight into click throughs, who is reading the blog, and what posts are most popular. This is vitally important when you are planning an editorial calendar. For example, if you are writing for a 30-50 year old audience, but the majority of readers are in their 20s, you may need to alter your content. If you are spending a ton of time writing content that isn’t getting high traffic, you may need to alter your content calendar accordingly. Remember, you are writing for your audience and the content that they want to read, not that you want to read.