A good business blog can help generate leads, heighten company’s visibility, engage not only potential clients, but also possible recruits and partners, and strengthen the relationship with existing customers. Raising brand awareness and increasing web traffic through blog posts may sound like an impossible task. But with these simple steps, you will not only find your company getting attention and win more business deals than you can imagine but you can also develop the company’s authority, build confidence and position the brand as an industry leader.
1. Target your audience and their needs
Before you write your post, you need to target the right audience. To have the impact that most writers aim, the article needs to speak to its audience’s interests and needs and posts topics that resonate with your market and show your knowledge. Your audience is not looking for a sales pitch. Some of them might not even know you yet, or what your business is all about. This is a perfect opportunity to let them know what’s in it for them. Woo your customers by providing advice how you can help them, and why reading your post is worth their precious minutes.
2. Create a captivating, enticing opening
In a distracted world where we live now, getting someone to look at anything is a fierce battle. The opening is one of the most critical elements of your article. The headline works as a ‘linkbait’ to get people to click. These elements in your post hook people and get them to read. Although going for different and witty ones work at times, often it is still better to go for clear and concise headlines. You’d be surprised how those simple ones usually get the most clicks.
3. Find the unique angle
It would be quite a challenge to write about something that no one else has ever written before. There’s google, which basically provides every topic you could ever think of. Tell a story that’s uniquely yours, share the company’s insights, and ideas, with the readers’ needs and interests in focus. Keep the ideas fresh, interesting and inspiring. As you visualize that one-of-a-kind perspective, you will realize that your writing becomes more personal, more real thus more engaging.
4. Have an easy-to-read structure
While having a clear and focused viewpoint is good, it is also important to note that the whole post has to be easy on the eyes- which means shorter paragraphs, using bullets/ numbered lists, and the proper use of subheadings. Bolds, italics, quotation marks must also be properly used. The content must be organized, and readers must be able to conclude with just a glance that it is not intimidating to read. Long paragraphs and dense blocks of text make the readers feel that the post takes forever to finish. Give them space to breathe and use a lot of white space.
5. Choose the appropriate images
Getting the right image for your post is as important, and should not be overlooked. It doesn’t have to be just about the topic. It could also imply, in an underlying tone, the emotion that the writer is trying to express through the post. We all know how popular and powerful the social media images are, as they convey a lot of emotions and can often catch people’s attention better than headlines. At the same time, make sure that the images are also aligned with your branding guidelines.
6. Use outside data or information for credibility
Did you know that 4 in 5 business marketers use blog for content marketing? [2016 B2B Content Marketing Trends- North America, Content Marketing Institute]. Business blogging is not all about emotions and personal insights. Most of the time, readers are more sceptical and doubtful of what they read unless there are more credible sources to convince them otherwise. Using expert quotes, customer testimonials, case studies, even opinions of influencers will help establish credibility and trust with your readers.
7. Have your own personal style of writing and keep your tone of voice
Blogs are meant to be informal. It should be engaging but also casual and conversational. Don’t be afraid to add your personal touch, or use emotional words. Give it some personality, and let it reflect your tone of voice. Take a personal spin on a certain business topic. Include your opinions about an issue, maybe predictions in the industry, backed up by facts and relevant studies. If you add your personal experiences, keep your tone of voice, and find your own approach to what everyone else is saying, then you got your piece.
8. Nobody chats with a robot
Conversational content makes the readers feel they are more welcome. So while it is interesting to keep a certain corporate tone, your post should reflect the human face of your company. Try to keep the sales pitch down a little, and you’ll find people more likely to interact because they can personally relate to it. A blog post shouldn’t be a monologue. Throw in some questions. Let the readers pause and reflect on real-life situations. Empathize with them, try putting yourself in their shoes.
9. Try different post lengths
When it comes to writing, it all depends on how valuable the content is. While some think that 200-300 words are good for busy corporate people, having 500-600 words is perfect for search engine optimization. At the same time, bloggers would recommend posts of 1000-3000 words to offer the most value to readers and keep them coming back for more.
10. End with a meaningful conclusion or insert a call to action in the end
Don’t end your article without giving an advice or a reminder of what the readers need to do next. It is not an essay that just merely sums up your findings. The last paragraph of your post should be provocative. It should give the opportunity for the readers to act on it. It should be inspirational and encourage them to do something not tomorrow, but now.
There is no perfect blog post. Living in a social medial bubble that anything can go viral and in a highly saturated market that everyone tries to say the same thing, it all boils down to the valuable content that your post offers. That, coupled with your marketing strategies, can certainly make your articles stand out from the rest. Remember that this doesn’t happen overnight. A business blog is a lot of work, and requires a lot of time. But once you’ve mastered it, not only will your traffic multiply over time, but also your social shares and quality leads will start coming in. The challenge is how to stand out from the noise around that will not only last long enough to spark interest among readers but also good enough for them to get involved. It only takes a few seconds to prove that you are worth it. So just keep writing.