What is a blog, how to start one and how it can help your business grow.
A blog provides a space where you can write, publish and share articles. It can be a place to communicate and engage with your auidence, promote and discuss news, products and services and share experiences and ideas.
Having a blog added to your business website can also help to improve your website SEO (ranking in search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing) and bring in more traffic to your website.
B is for Build It
Build it and they will come….
Keeping your website up-to-date by adding regular content such as via a blog, can keep your website fresh and inviting. Over time it can also help improve the organic ranking of your website for relevant keywords.
There are lots of tools you can use to build a blog. Some of the most popular options are WordPress, Tumblr and Weebly. If you already have a business website you may be able to add a blog directly to this – ask your web developer for advice or contact Digital Spice for a quote.
When putting together a blog some key areas to consider are:
Analyse your competition – take a look at what other businesses/bloggers who offer similar content/context are doing on their blog. What strategies are they using to create engagement and to market their blog? What techniques can you implement?
Categorise your articles – think about how you can organise your blog posts into categories. This will help your readers find and filter for articles that interest them the most.
Design and readability – ensure your blog layout is easy to read, contains no clutter and clearly communicates your message. It should also be easy to read on mobile devices.
L is for Love Your Audience
Your audience is the entire reason you write a blog. You want your readers to enjoy your articles, learn from your content, engage with it and come back for more.
Consider your audience – Who are you targetting with your blog posts? What age groups, interest groups, locations etc? What sort of topics would your target audience want to read about? What sort of imagery would your audience find appealing?
Listen to your audience – always respond to comments whether positive or negative, this shows you care about your audience and appreciate their input.
Engage with your audience – encourage involvement, ask questions, request feedback, promote comments, ‘Likes’ and shares.
O is for Original Content
Published content on your blog should be treated like a conversation, afterall no-one wants to read a textbook! It should be unique and relevant to your business or industry.
Engage your readers with the information they want and need to know, answer commonly asked questions and write your copy in a way that is easy to read and absorb.
Write what you know – this is usually the easiest content to write about as it comes from your own knowledge rather than entirely researched topics. Consider articles such as quick guides, DIY tips, answers to FAQ, facts, statistics and infographics.
Relevancy and SEO – when writing blog posts, consider the sorts of terms you are wanting to be found for in searches and write your articles around these topics. Include relevant keywords consistently throughout your copy. Over time this can help improve the organic ranking of your website and can also help to build up rapport with your readers and customers. Find out more about website SEO here.
Add vision – include eye-catching and relevant imagery to your posts and/or videos to visually demonstrate and engage your audience.
Copywrite Copyright – always make sure you have copyright to the content used on your blog. This includes all text, images and videos. If using someone else’s media, makes sure you have their written approval first.
Avoid copy and paste – for best results always aim for unique content for your blog posts. Don’t just copy and paste from another website; even with their permission, as search engines are sophisticated enough to recognise duplicate content and this could be detrimental for your SEO goals.
G is for GO GO GROW!
There are many ways to promote your blog posts to gain further reach and more readers.
Social media – utilise mainstream social media such as Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn to gain greater reach and reads! In your social media posts include a relevant image, a heading and a brief intro letting readers know what your post is about along with a link to your article encouraging clicks/traffic to your website.
Paid boosts and posts – for best results for paid posts always narrow down your audience by age, gender, location or interests to ensure the budget is used to reach your target audience.
Email campaigns – let your customers know about your latest post via email campaigns. I recommend using an email campaign software provider such as Campaign Monitor or Mail Chimp enabling you to send branded emails with images in the content as well as the added benefit of being able to track how many people opened your email, who it was, how many people clicked on the link to read your blog post and more.
Create engagement – encourage your readers to leave comments, ask questions and promote interactivity. Add social share icons to your posts to encourage your readers to like and share your article on their social profiles.
Add calls to action – such as links to relevant products, services, newsletter sign-ups, contact details etc to encourage readers to find out more.
Monitor the results of your blog posts over time to see which articles gain the most interest. Use website statistic software such as Google Analytics to further determine how much traffic your blog posts receive.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this article.
If you have any feedback or suggestions for topics you would like me to write about, get in contact. I love hearing from my readers.
If you would like someone to set up a blog on your business website, or manage your blog and content marketing, feel free to contact Digital Spice for a quote.
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