Business Blogging

 

If you have a business you might have asked yourself numerous times whether blogging is still a relevant promotional tool. The short answer is an emphatic yes, provided you do it the right way. There will always be a demand for blogs that provide the information people are looking for, and that answer their questions.

 

Writing a regular blog has many benefits for a business, including:

 

More leads


Statistics show that companies with an SEO optimized blog that is regularly updated get up to 67 percent more leads than their competitors without one. Plus, 47 percent of prospective buyers first read between 3 and 5 pieces of content before they decide to engage with a sales representative of a company.

 

People don’t like old news


A blog is one of the best ways to make sure your website regularly gets fresh content. It’s also a great way to keep visitors coming back next week, next month, and next year. Ask yourself this: if there are two companies that offer a particular service or product – you and company B, who would people trust more: the one whose website has last been updated in 2000 or the one that regularly posts a blog with fresh industry news?

 

Hard selling scares off potential buyers


Hard selling is becoming increasingly more unpopular. Everyone knows and hates that feeling of being pushed into a corner by a salesman. The moment you get a chance to run, you will. That is why research shows that nearly 80 percent of businesses nowadays opt for advertisements in the form of useful content instead of following the old-style “You’re not leaving before you’ve bought something” approach.

 

If you want to sell in today’s world, your company needs a human face. And blogging is a great way to do that. Adding a blog section to your website and sharing the blogs on blogging sites and social media will also give you a way to promote your business in a creative, user-friendly way.

 

Soft-selling to your email list


The same principle applies when you are sending information to the subscribers on your email list. If you are going to simply send them product lists three times a week, you’re unlikely to have much success. A genuinely interesting and useful blog is a much softer and more effective way to break the ice. And a blog is also a proven way to get more email subscribers in the first place.

 

Quality beats quantity every day


Blogging is about playing a long-term game. It’s about gradually building relationships between you and your current and future customers. How would you feel about a sales representative who knocks on your door at 8 am on a Monday morning and promptly tries to sell you an encyclopedia you’ve never heard of? What if he does that every Monday morning? Annoying, right?


That is not how long-term relationships are forged. You have to spend time talking to prospective buyers about the topics they are interested in. You have to provide useful advice. You have to establish yourself as a source of trustworthy information (and if you can’t write, there are plenty of blogging services that can help you with this).

 

If you use the same strategy and logic in your blog, your chances of success will go through the roof. Blogs with top quality, original content will work today, and they will most likely still work next year and the year after that.

 

Focus is important


There are clear benefits to be derived from using your company blog to deliver in-depth content about a particular topic. According to Digital marketer Eric Enge sites that offer in-depth quality content fare much better in search engine rankings than those that only skim the surface of a particular topic.

You can do this by writing longer blog posts that allow you to explore a topic in depth. Use the extra space to look at the topic from different angles. This will go a long way to give your readers the assurance that you are not just pushing a particular angle, and it will be a hit with Google and its colleagues.

 

Another way to use a regular blog to establish yourself as an expert in your field is to write a number of ‘Ultimate Guides’. This will force you to go into more detail, which is great for SEO rankings, and readers who are genuinely interested in the field will love these blogs and begin to view you as the go-to source of information on the topic. Guess who will they turn to when they want to switch from reader to buyer?

 

Who are the businesses that succeed in the modern world of blogging?

 

Blogging is as good a marketing tool as ever. In fact, it has become more effective. A study carried out by Data Box recently revealed that 68 percent of marketers believe that blogging has become more effective over the last two years.

 

You might say that the internet has been flooded with blogs. That might be true, but the trick is that the successful ones are those that have adapted their approach.

 

A business blog is an inexpensive way to connect with your target audience. Small business owners often realize a blog is an integral part of an online presence, giving them content to share on social media and offering value to those who land on their website. But knowing exactly what types of content to add, and when to add it, is a different matter.

 

In a survey of 1,117 bloggers, researchers found that content quality was rated as the most important element in running a successful blog. If you’re going to add a blog to your business website, you must make sure the items you publish are of high value to readers and reflect positively on your brand. A blog provides content for your site visitors, gives you something to promote in a newsletter and provides posts for social media accounts.

 

If you want to compete in a global economy, your website needs a blog. However, there are some very specific things you must consider as you consider your content strategy.

 

1. Welcome a Target Audience


Although most businesses have a specific buyer persona they cater to and they know that audience well, there are times when you want to reach a new target market. The content you add to your blog can help attract a specific type of buyer. Start by studying the new audience, just as you would any target market. Make a list of the types of topics related to your business that person might search for. Then, answer those questions with videos, articles and infographics.

 

ring

 

Ring offers a blog and uses topics that might attract new audiences, such as the military or those looking to create a greater sense of safety in their neighborhoods. However, they still cover topics aimed at their target audience of homeowners looking to add security features to their houses.

 

2. Entertain Your Site Visitors


Today’s consumers have many different things clamoring for their attention — text messages, the latest television show, social media posts and so much more. The only way you’ll grab and keep their attention is by entertaining them. The content you provide needs to have a unique tone and show off your brand personality. Use good writing practices, such as a strong headline that grabs attention, and keep content skimmable so users can read through it quickly even if they only have a few minutes to spare.

 

3. Become a Storyteller


The art of story goes back to a time before humankind had a formal written language, when stories were shared via pictures drawn on cave walls. People are naturally drawn to a good story. Cognitive psychologists suggest people are about 22 times more likely to remember facts when they’re told in the form of a story. If you remember to tell a story and hit on all the points that tap into user emotions, visitors won’t just land on your page and bounce away — they’ll hang around and read your offerings.

 

meco

 

MECO highlights stories about their workers on their blog, which gives site visitors insights into the company and a peek behind the scenes. For example, they highlight one of their manufacturing engineering managers and share information about what he does for the company and how long he’s been there. There are many different ways to share a story, including tapping into why the founders started the brand and unique elements of the business.

 

4. Use Videos


Videos have a huge impact on site visitors, and your blog is a perfect platform to embed videos about your products and services. About 90 percent of survey participants indicate product videos help them decide whether or not to buy.

 

Look at how you can highlight your products and educate your audience in a fun way, such as an animated video showing the benefits of using your product or service. You can also highlight customers via testimonial videos. Videos are a nice break from reading text and allow visitors to grab information in short bursts.

 

5. Include Visuals


About 32 percent of marketers say creating visual content is the most important form of marketing, even rising above blogging. However, blogging and visualizations don’t have to be two separate things. You can certainly add visuals as part of your overall content strategy and enhance your articles with infographics, data-based animations, charts and graphs.

 

Make sure the visual relates to the topic at hand. If you sell lemons, you might create content about why your lemons are 50 percent sweeter than other lemons on the market and add a visual showing the sweetness of each kind with yours in the center.

 

MECO highlights stories about their workers on their blog, which gives site visitors insights into the company and a peek behind the scenes. For example, they highlight one of their manufacturing engineering managers and share information about what he does for the company and how long he's been there. There are many different ways to share a story, including tapping into why the founders started the brand and unique elements of the business. 4. Use Videos Videos have a huge impact on site visitors, and your blog is a perfect platform to embed videos about your products and services. About 90 percent of survey participants indicate product videos help them decide whether or not to buy. Look at how you can highlight your products and educate your audience in a fun way, such as an animated video showing the benefits of using your product or service. You can also highlight customers via testimonial videos. Videos are a nice break from reading text and allow visitors to grab information in short bursts. 5. Include Visuals About 32 percent of marketers say creating visual content is the most important form of marketing, even rising above blogging. However, blogging and visualizations don't have to be two separate things. You can certainly add visuals as part of your overall content strategy and enhance your articles with infographics, data-based animations, charts and graphs. Make sure the visual relates to the topic at hand. If you sell lemons, you might create content about why your lemons are 50 percent sweeter than other lemons on the market and add a visual showing the sweetness of each kind with yours in the center.

 

Styling You is a site and blog by Nikki Parkinson where she makes suggestions on outfits. One of her visuals shows a collection of different blouse styles that work well with jeans. The visual works perfectly, because it highlights the topic she’s writing about and gives users something to skim over and instantly understand what she’s talking about even if they don’t read every word there.

 

6. Connect With Social Media


Writing a rich and engaging blog gives you vluable content for your social media channels. Followers on sites such as Facebook and Twitter don’t appreciate getting a hard sales pitch, but if you offer something of value, they’re much more likely to visit your site, follow your page and do business with you.

 

Let’s go back to the lemon company example. You write a blog post about your lemons being sweeter and then you follow up with another post with a recipe for lemon meringue pie. If you then share that recipe to your Pinterest account, you’re likely to gain new customers from that effort.

 

If you vary the types of content on your blog, you’ll also have videos you can upload, infographics you can draw images from and testimonials to brag about.

 

Lexie Lu is a designer and writer. She loves researching trends in the web and graphic design industry. She writes weekly on Design Roast and can be followed on Twitter @lexieludesigner

 

Generate New Leads


Use your business blog to drive traffic to your site, grab new site visitors and educate your buyers on your product or services. An engaging blog turns browsers into new leads and converts. Blogging is another form of marketing and one that is cost-effective and successful. If your business site doesn’t yet have a blog, adding one enriches the overall value of your site to visitors.

 

revenue generating blog post

 

Far too many businesses make a very common marketing mistake. They’ll start a blog, simply because someone tells them that they should have one.

 

What transpires is a section of the business website that is occasionally dealt a 300-or-so word article depicting the latest news from the organization, or perhaps a no-holds-barred rant from the managing director.  What it lacks is any kind of strategy or focus on providing content that potential customers might want to read.

 

There are many constituent elements that make up an awesome blog post, but if you don’t know what they are, you’re unlikely to find them simply by occasionally publishing a post whenever inspiration strikes.

 

In this post, we’re going to delve under the hood of brilliant blogging and find out how to create awesome posts that will attract the right audience and keep them engaged.

 

Conduct proper research


What type of people do you want to read your blog? What are their interests, frustrations and common questions?

 

Before you write anything, start by researching both your audience and potential content ideas. Don’t assume you know it all – brainstorm the profile and demographics of your audience and the kind of topics that will likely peak their interest.

 

Mind Mapping

 

You can do this with a whiteboard, pen and paper or visual mind map – whatever gets your creative juices flowing.

 

Treat blog posts with just as much attention as other important pages


You wouldn’t publish a new service or product page for your site without doing full keyword research, and the same mantra should be applied to your blog.

 

Again, before putting digital pen to digital paper, conduct thorough keyword research. Look for short and long-tail keywords that you audience is likely to use and focus your title ideas on them.

 

Answer a burning question


Which questions is your intended audience asking? What are the key issues with which they need expert assistance?

 

As a blogger, you’re placing yourself squarely in the role of expert, so check out tools like Answer The Public to find brilliant subjects for your blog. Make sure your eventual piece adds value, too. The likelihood is your blog will join countless others offering the same advice, therefore you can stand out by presenting genuinely interesting, actionable advice and making your content better.

 

Spend what feels like too much time on the title


The 80/20 rule applies to blogging, and it may surprise you to hear that the lion’s share of that time should be devoted to the blog title.

 

A bit like an email subject line, it’s the first thing people will see. It therefore needs to captivate them immediately with a sense of urgency, a promise that one of their burning questions will be answered and a cliff-hanger that screams “click me now!”.

 

Headlines have always been super important, so make sure yours leaps of the page (and don’t forget those keywords!).

 

Use beautiful imagery


Blogs aren’t just about words – they should be accompanied by beautiful images.

 

There’s nothing wrong with stock photography, but it makes sense to put a significant amount of effort into sourcing the images for your blog posts. Better still, if you can create your own unique visuals, your post will be unique as you will create something that can’t be found elsewhere.

 

Videos work brilliantly, too, therefore if you find the opportunity to embed one within your next blog post, jump at the chance.

 

Dont forget the call-to-action


You could write the most engaging, value-packed blog post imaginable, but if you fail to include a call-to-action (CTA), you may as well not have bothered.

 

What do you want people to do when they’ve finished reading your post? Email you? Sign-up to the monthly newsletter? Sign up for a trial of your software? Whatever it is, make it an obvious next step once they’ve read the last sentence.

 

Wrapping up


Blogging requires patience, creative flair and – most importantly – strategic thinking. We hope you will find our tips inspiring. Please do share your own tips, on writing awesome blogposts, in the comments below.

Business Blogging Content

 

It’s a typical Monday. Most people are head down, churning out work, planning out their week. But you, you’re on the hunt for content that you can turn into actionable blog posts for your audience. You know what your audience is looking for and you know where they hang out online — the only thing you’re lacking is the influx of content to really drive SERPs and get people to your site. Here are a few ways to turn your daily business conversations into resourceful content:

 

1. Be a Resource


 

Just because you’re an expert in your field doesn’t mean that your readers are. Provide resourceful content and ebooks that will help your audience get a deeper understanding of your industry, and better yet, help them rely on your site as a top resource.

While this may seem like a daunting feat, it really is as easy as writing down what you know. Ask the thought leaders on your team what they specialize in and what they’d love to write about; guaranteed, they each have an area of expertise which they are passionate about. Outline content requirements and even structure their posts for them; make it as easy as possible for them to jot down their wealth of knowledge. Have them turn in a piece of content (about 500 words is good) and have an editor spruce it up a bit (remember, not everyone is a writer). Easy as that, you just created some straight-from-the-source, resourceful content.

Want some inspiration? Check out Moody’s Analytics Insight publications— this is a great example of a company that turned its employees’ expert knowledge into a top resource for users.

 

2. Create a Case Study


 

You have a plethora of amazing clients you are helping to be the best. Why not turn the work you’re doing for those clients into blog content? For example, if you use influencer marketing for your clients, create a case study based on virality of the content you created versus the existing content the client had created without your help. Case studies are an awesome way to drive traffic to your blog and to grow your email list. Keep case studies gated (requiring an email address) and you can track popularity while you grow your email marketing campaigns.

For details on how to create a compelling case study, read this KISSmetrics post.

 

3. Repurpose Existing Content


 

Your website is filled with content that’s crafted to make the sale, written specifically for your unique audience. Take the content from your landing page, your About Us, even your FAQ and expand on it for on-point, easy content. Better yet, if you have an existing blog, take your old blog posts that are still relevant and rewrite them with a 2015 twist. You may need to add new data and pictures, but a little rewriting of existing content is a sure-fire way to drive traffic without too much work.

 

4. Create Graphics


 

When you’re looking at your content to decide what to repurpose, pull out great stats, data and strong sentences to turn into graphics. Whenever you’re creating blog content, keep in mind that everything can also be easily represented in visual form. While we may only remember 20 percent of what we read, Hubspot reports that we remember 80 percent of what we see. Visual content is great for social media and can also be used for infographics. A simple sentence in bold font can do a lot to drive engagement and can keep your blog post alive long after you post it.

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