Blogs can be a great way to attract more prospects to your online business who may then convert to customers or clients. This does not happen by just publishing content. Below we provide an overview of the process. Most business leaders will quickly see that there is both due diligence and process involved. Successful business blogs are not achieved as easily as many may think.
Target and Master Your Niche
Before you even outline your blog topic, you need to define your audience and niche. Until you know who your audience is, you won’t know who you are tailoring your content for. There’s a misconception that successful bloggers just write whatever they want. While the goal is for your writing to appear effortless, conversational, it must have validity for its intended audience. So first define your audience and niche, and then draft content of value for this target demographic.
Like any online business, it’s nearly impossible to succeed alone. Once you have your niche, conduct research to discover who the influencers in your industry are. Not only will you learn from the content they have created and the audience they have elected to educate/entertain, but you can also reach out to these individuals and see if there are ways that you can help each other out.
One goal of these mutually beneficial blogging relationships is that you can find opportunities to write guest posts for better-established bloggers. Think of this as your ‘big break’, as your content will be exposed to a larger audience, and you will have the opportunity to win some new fans as well as expand your blog’s readership. Be sure to make the most of this opportunity by establishing your own voice so you don’t sound too much like the other bloggers in your industry. Furthering your brand’s identity depends on it.
Get social and be sure to comment on other blog posts, particularly those in your industry. Fans of bloggers also read the comments to see if anyone else can add to the original post, so if you leave insightful feedback, they’ll take notice and might take interest in what you have to say, too.
Engage your Audience with Nuggets
Demographic targeted, it’s time to draft. Have something to say. Address your audience and provide them with a takeaway. That can be any piece of information of value to them. Always remember why you’re trying to grow your blog in the first place. That means be sure to create content for your audience, not for yourself. Also, try and stay a step ahead of your competitors, be original and don’t write what everyone else is writing about. This will bore readers and potentially drive them away. Reader retention is just as important as growth!
When you write, always present and maintain a familiar and consistent tone of voice. If your content resonates with your audience, the familiar tone will keep them comfortable and will encourage them to come back for more.
Influence Through Feedback
Think about building your audience like a community, and imagine your third-party comments on other as inbound invitations. Encourage feedback on your blog posts and converse with your readers who comment. The one caveat is to be prompt, courteous, and follow-through. Address any negative feedback with decorum and move on. Others will be watching and by taking the high-road, you’ll always look like a winner and impress, influence, and gain more followers.
Every blog post should be optimized. That not only means adding keywords, titles, and internal links (if the blog is associated with an ecommerce site, for example) but also to structure the associated URL in the “back end” so the search engines will index the content. This can lead to higher rankings on the search engines and drive quality traffic (those searching the internet for your specific material/topic/goods/services). So be sure your content is relevant to your demographic and optimized using appropriate keywords in the title and content. Is your blog illustrated with graphics and/or photos? Be sure to optimize those pieces of on-page real estate using alt tags that incorporate relevant keywords.
Use Social Media
Building your community doesn’t end with your blog. It’s imperative that you take additional measures to find new readers and always be looking to drive quality traffic to your blog.
- Write posts with enticing images that link to your blog posts
- Request feedback and engage with your readers on social media
Not every social media platform will offer the best audiences/new prospects for your business. Learn the differences and only post to those that will benefit your type of business.
Add social icons to your blog so your followers will know where to follow you. In addition to driving traffic to your blog, you can also influence others to follow you on social media by providing updates for your next posts, as well as other interesting content they might enjoy.
Create and Promote a Newsletter
In addition to Social Media, creating an email list is a great way to build and maintain reader retention. Start by approaching your business relationships establish an email exchange for like value- a social media mention or a guest blog post.
To get a stronger gauge for who you’re writing for, you can use analytics features from your chosen Email Marketing Service Platform. This will give you a better idea of who you’re connecting with on a more specific level.
There are a number of ways to extend your blog’s reach. What’s most important is that you plan ahead, think strategically, and be persistent with your work. By following these steps, you can grow and maintain your blog at a steady pace over an extended period of time. Good luck!
If your head is spinning you may have just realized that building a successful business blog is hard work. It is also a full-time job that must be nurtured and promoted daily. For over 20 years Active Web Group has serviced businesses of all sizes and in nearly every industry. Speak with our professionals to help grow your brand via your customized business blog. Contact us for a confidential consultation. Can’t wait? Give us a call at (800) 978-3417 today!