So, your clients want to start a blog?
The word “blog” is a shortened form of the term weblog (or web log). The online Merriam-Webster dictionary defines blog as “a web site that contains an online personal journal with reflections, comments, and often hyperlinks provided by the writer.” The person who writes this type of journal is a blogger and the act of writing is called blogging. The collective whole of all the blogs on the Internet is called the Blogosphere. As of this February, there were more than 156 million public blog sites on the Internet.
Blogging started in the 1990s as primarily online diaries, where the authors shared an ongoing account of their day-to-day lives. Blogs have gained in popularity since that time and are now an important component in social media and Internet communications.
As part of a successful marketing strategy, business blogging is a means to interact and communicate with current and prospective clients. By utilizing blogging, a business can put forth a human personality rather than a faceless corporate object.
Businesses of all sizes and types can, and should, use blogging as a means of communication. It is a valuable method for building relationships with their target market. Your clients need to provide information and interactions your target market will both enjoy and find valuable. To this end, they need to plan out their blog content.
Seven Simple Tips for Better Blog Content:
Strategize and plan business blog content and blogging campaign before you publish anything. Know the target market – are your clients focusing on business-to-business or business-to-consumer? It is important to be consistent with your blog postings. Your business needs a blog content plan that addresses WWWWW and H.
- Who will be writing the blogs?
- What topic(s) will be addressed?
- When will the blogs be published?
- Where will your blogs appear?
- Why are you writing; to answer a specific consumer question?
- How are you going to provide that answer?
- Use the blog content to establish expertise; the person who will provide the answers. As your clients share their expertise, they build relationships and trust. They should think about the questions they receive from current clients/customers, then address these questions and their answers in their blogs. Search engine optimization and keyword research will help identify the subjects the target market finds important.
- Use blog content to promote the company’s vision and personal vision for the company and the industry. The blog will introduce your client's brand to a global audience. Use blog content to build an interactive community around a specific topic related to the brand. If there is a crisis, your clients can use blog content to manage that crisis to their advantage.
- Share news about new products or services. Use blog content to build excitement about a new product or service. Share excitement! Provide a means for your readers to also share their excitement.
- Always allow and encourage feedback and interaction from blog readers. Use this feedback as basic research for new and improved services and/or products. Always provide a call to action and a simple way to initiate that action. Let your blog, its contents, and its readers evolve naturally.
- In the body of the blog content, use clear and concise headers and sub-headers. Limit it to two or three sentences per paragraph. Use bullet points or numbered lists. Lists are easy to read and provide an easy transition from one point to the next. Titles are important; it is the first thing (and sometimes the only thing) to be read on your client's page. Keep it between 50 and 60 characters. A good title will tell the reader everything they need to know about the blog’s contents.
- Possibly the greatest challenge faced by a blogger is finding the ideas and the time to write new high-quality content. Constantly trying to squeeze time out of your schedule to write for a blog can be a chore. You should consider hiring a consultant who can provide a complete solution for your blogging needs.
There is a plethora of information available on the Internet regarding blogs and blogging; some websites dedicated to content marketing. There are also some outstanding books available. Here are a few recommendations:
Blogging is an effective method to find and keep new customers! Use these tips to help your clients create and maintain a better blog for their businesses.