Blogs are everywhere. From gossip and entertainment to parenting and crafting, no matter what customers' interests are, there's a blog for that. Business blogs sit in a different area than some other blogs, however, because they must keep an eye on marketing objectives if they are to be successful.
So what does it take to create business blog content that captures customers?
1. Solve Problems
You'll see this over and over and it has made it to the top of this list because it is that important. If your business blog content is not solving the problems of readers, then you can stop right here. Content marketing exists to find customers while they're actively seeking solutions to their problems or answers to their questions. Before you worry about anything else define the reader's problem and then answer it.
2. Focus on Your Personas
Business blog content can't be plain, informative, and written to appeal to a mass audience or you'll bore everyone. Instead, you want to be lively, funny and entertaining to the small percentage of people who are the most likely to become customers. How to make that happen depends heavily on who you are talking to.
Some people will find authenticity in the occasional curse word, others will discredit you entirely for it. Some people think puppies are the answer to all of life's problems while others think they're a nuisance. Know who you are talking to so you know how to appeal to them and don't worry about everyone else.
3. Good Structural Foundation
Before you start, make sure you've got your structural pieces in place. Start with a good headline that gets attention and makes a promise that your content will fulfill. Make sure you have a good call-to-action ready to place at the end of your posts. Make sure you're following other common guidelines such as breaking up paragraphs by using bullets and subheadings and using a clean design. By having all this in place before you start writing you'll ensure that the reader doesn't have to do any work in order to get the message.
4. Be Enthusiastic
If you're bored with what you're writing you can be certain that whoever is reading is even more bored. Or, more accurately, they're probably not bored because they've already left your page and are somewhere more entertaining. Don't just write about your business, teach the readers about the individual aspects of your products and services. Show them why you think you're so much better than the competition – and believe what you're saying.
5. Form a Bond
Copyblogger suggests finding a common enemy as a way to bond with the reader. Now this doesn't have to be the competition or some “bad guy” that you go off on a rant about. The idea is to establish the feeling that we're all in this together and that you're here to help out.
For example, let's suppose you're a mechanic. Your common enemy can be greedy, deceitful outfits that take advantage of customers that don't know much about cars. They're bad for customers because unnecessary repairs are often billed and they're bad for other mechanics by harming the overall reputation of the industry.
6. Get Emotional
If you can make your readers feel a certain way you can help convince them to take the next step. Whether you want to create a sense of urgency, a sense of security, or some other feeling with your business blog content, giving your readers an emotional attachment will help them visualize themselves needing your products or services and then being satisfied when you deliver them. The images at the top of a blog post are part of the content too, so use that opportunity to give an emotional jump-start to your words by beginning with a compelling image.
7. Leave the Sell Behind
Advertising is not the same as content marketing. Advertisements need to start the conversation and get the customer thinking about your products using only a brief moment to speak a thousand words. You, on the other hand, have a thousand words at your disposal. Use them to have the conversation instead of just starting it.
Write content that is simple, direct and makes the reader feel confident. Avoid business blog content that is overly creative and leaves too much to the imagination. Remember, you want to compel the reader to take the next step, not think about taking the next step.