Branded blogging is a must. Especially with businesses that are looking to build an audience, blogging has to be a consistent practice. In our previous blog post, The Benefits of Blogging for Business and Marketing, we talked about the impact. Now, let's dig into a few best practices to write blog posts that move the needle.
1) Engage Subject Matter Experts (SME)You don’t have to go at this alone. Find SME’s in your company that can help you write articles on their area of specialty. Ask them to write a couple of times a year on a given topic to mix up the content and relieve the writing burden. Track how many views you get for each post. You may decide to increase the writing frequency of a particular blog contributor if their articles are more popular.
2) Target specific keywordsFind and use keywords that you would like your business to show up for when your potential customers are searching online. This takes a bit of homework and you can use tools like Google AdWords Keyword Planner and SEM Rush to help you understand search volume and competition. Try to include your keywords in your title and URL and then create a compelling description to attract viewers to your post.
3) Write useful and engaging contentThis is key. Make sure your articles offer value to your readers. Think about how you can help your audience. What can you share that will help them and their business grow, save, improve, learn or be inspired? One of the ways that Google decides how much traffic to send your article is by looking at the amount of time people spend on the page itself. If you are providing value, readers will stay and read through the article.
4) Proofread and create visual appealIt’s important to keep up good grammar and proofread your articles. I write my posts in Google Docs first and use Grammarly and PolishMyWriting to check my work initially. Then I ask a proofreader (this could be someone in the office you trust or a paid freelancer) to check them over again. Now make your articles visually appealing. You can do this by breaking up the text with images, headlines, and bullet points. Don’t overdo it with colors or different size text but simply break it up so readers can move through your article with ease - finding the key takeaways easily.
5) Write and publish regularlyCarve out time once a week (yes, you can do this) to write. I do it on Friday mornings. I’m full of energy and ideas and I get into the office early to write. You can use an editorial calendar that maps out what topics you will write about each week or month to help you stay on track. The key is to create articles regularly so your readers feel like the blog is current and not out of date. It is also important to create “evergreen content” - content that stays relevant over a long period of time. Try to avoid writing about fads and trends often as these articles will be dated and start to get pushed
6) Share in social and emailNow that you have the content it’s time to share it so people can benefit from it and you can increase visitors to the article and your website. Share it out on your social pages and send an email out to your customers and followers. I also urge you to send it to your employees and ask them to share it with their networks.
What are you waiting for? Start blogging. You are obviously well versed in your field. You started an entire business around your intellect in your industry. You have a wealth of knowledge around topics that are important to your customers. Take the time to share it for great marketing benefits and steady business growth.