Out of all the online marketing tools, blogging is by and large the most effective one out there. We speak to all of our clients and suggest the addition of a blog to their site for a number of reasons. Numerous studies have shown, a brand with a blog tends to be far more successful online than those without. We love blogging in BED HQ so thought we would blog… about blogging…
One of the biggest positives of blogging is that it is a free tool to market yourself with. Yes, plenty of time will be invested but that will pay dividends quickly. Sites with a blog have previously shown 55% more visitors than when the site plodded along without a blog.
Additionally, a key reason we like blogs on the sites we build is for the SEO purposes. Blogs will be industry-relevant and start filling your site with keyword rich, user valuable content that will hoist your site and pages up the rankings. Blogs please Google Algorithms as it means your site is frequently posting new content that is of value to the visitor. Blogs also provide content to be shared on social media channels which Google also rates, especially if it is others sharing your content!
A blog to showcase all of your expertise will instantly give your website and brand credibility in the market. The content also gives you a chance to give the brand a voice that is targeted to your market audience. Any posts give the option to really start a conversation with visitors on your site in the comments. You can answer any questions or comments they have and directly speak to those engaged with your site.
The time spent researching the different industry-relevant topics won’t only produce you a shiny new blog but actually increase your own knowledge. When you’ve spent time researching different facts, stats and trends in your industry, then put the content together into tangible sentences, you will soon be able to explain the different ideas to friends, family and prospective customers without a pause!
So, you’ve decided to commit to blogging. Good choice!
Now to start, you need to think about the goals you want to achieve from it. Knowing the goals helps you to focus your content and post strategy. There’s a nice list you can achieve:
Once you have your goals in mind, the next step is to ensure the voice of your brand will fit your market segment. Going off brand can be damaging, consistency is key as the voice of the company will become a trusted one!
This will be probably the toughest hurdle of starting the blog… what to actually write? At the start, you’ll have loads of ideas which will keep the site ticking over nicely!
There are loads of ways to find inspiration for your blog, here are some we suggest (and use ourselves):
The easiest way to manage the blog is to draw up a schedule. Plan the frequency of posts, there is no magic number as you don’t want to flood your visitors but a rarely updated blog rings warning bells to your visitors. As an example, we aim for 1-2 blogs a week to keep it all ticking over nicely with fresh content. We also aim for a nice balance of topics swaying from marketing to Magento, design to development.
Sit and make a calendar, plug in the dates you want to be publishing and draw up a rough draft title of the topic you want to cover. This way you can see a visual spread of topics and posts, and then spread the workload across a couple of people depending on their strengths.
Make sure when you’re writing posts, they have substance and aren’t just ticking a box of needing to be done! Poor blog content will be as damaging as lack of blog content for your company’s reputation.
Blog posts are fantastic as they provide you with valuable content to be able to shout about on your social media channels! You can even follow the lead of promotion when it comes to social media post lifespan. Twitter tends to be the shortest lifespan and posts can be sent out on an hourly basis without drowning the Twitter timeline. Facebook is less forgiving with posts maybe having a lifespan of a few hours, so a couple of posts a day would suffice without suffocating your followers. You will get a feel for how often you can post. Lifespan gives the opportunity to reshare links to your blogs to continue promotion without it looking like that’s all you bang on about!
Guest bloggers can do wonders for promotion of your blog and site! This involves inviting someone else in your field who regularly blogs on similar topics, to write a blog to be posted on your site. This not only gives a fresh voice to your site but also opens up the outreach of your blog as the site is shared out to their followers – more potential followers for you!
If you send out newsletters to a mailing list, blogs are a great way to make the information sound more personal and give your company a voice! This way, your emails suddenly become helpful with useful content relevant to your company rather than going down the route of a sales pitch every time.
Keep an eye on the success of your blog posts to see where improvements can be made and what your visitors enjoy reading most! Your blog should continually evolve with current trends and topics to keep visitors engaged. Tracking your analytics for the pages will help show where the blog is excelling and where topics are feeling a bit stale.
As part of the marketing work we do here at BED for our clients, is to create a marketing strategy which can involve writing a blog or two for our clients. This helps keep the content ticking over and ensuring the keyword strategy is on point!