Establishing and maintaining a business blog is unfortunately not as easy as sitting down and writing the first things that pop into your head. As in daily face to face conversations we can all be guilty of going off on a tangent now and then, and the same can be true of our blog posts. A little bit off centre this way and that can be interesting and add depth, but the most successful blogs offer a service and don’t deviate from that purpose. Here is how to keep your company’s blog on track.
- A blog is not a sales pitch. Blogs should offer advice and information. Your website is there to sell what you do and why people should choose you over anyone else, so your blog doesn’t need to do that as well. Readers most often visit blogs because they want help with something. Perhaps they are looking for advice on which product or service is for them, or maybe they need advice on how to overcome a problem they are experiencing. That is also precisely how blogs generate inbound leads – if people can find what they need from you, they are impressed by your online service and grateful for the help, they are more likely to decide to take the next step in the sales process.
- Answer questions. Following on from the previous point, a good way to make sure your blog posts are hitting the mark is to answer questions you have been asked in real life. Whether via social media channels or face to face interaction, if someone has asked you for more information on a particular aspect of your product or service, it is quite likely there are plenty of other people out there who want to know the same thing. The more useful you can be to people, the more likely they are to read on and the more likely they are to revisit it time and time again.
- Write for one person. Obviously, you’re hoping your blog will be read by more than one person! However, to make sure your message is on target, imagine you are writing for one ideal customer. What would they like to see on your blog? What tone would best capture their imagination? What would make them come back again? If you deal in different sectors and can identify a few different ‘ideal customer’ scenarios of course make sure your business blog has something for everyone. But for each blog imagine one person so that you don’t try to target every possible corner of society in every blog. People who own their own business for example will require a completely different tone and message to a newly qualified graduate. Decide who you most want to reach and tailor your posts accordingly.
- Encourage return visits. The best chance you have of getting visitors to come back to your blog time and time again is to engage with them elsewhere too. Every post should give the option for people to share it with their own social networks and remind people to follow you on your own social media channels. This allows you to stay top of mind while you helpfully let them know when your latest blog posts are available. Plus, it helps you to build a larger network of people that are interested in your offering.
- Be consistent. Regular readers of the Blog Write Blog are probably getting fed up of hearing this now – there’s an entire post on it here why consistent blogs are better – but buckle up because here it comes again! Consistency really is key. If you have completed all of the other tips in this post, a reader will have landed on your site, found the answers to all the burning questions they had about the service you offer, feel like they have found a supplier that truly understands them and can help them and left your website to go off and dutifully follow you on all your social media channels. If you continue to post blogs, tweets and media posts, you will continue to be top of mind. Take a couple of months off or blog every now and then when you feel like it, and all your hard work in writing that killer blog post in the first place, will be undone.
Your blog, website and business will remain the ‘go to’ source of information, as long as you keep your end of the bargain and continue to publish useful content consistently.