Poorly written blog posts are the angora rabbits of social media marketing: fluffy, mostly harmless, but they won’t make your business any more profitable. It’s unquestionably business-savvy to have a blog – for increased web presence, enhancing your search engine credibility or to simply demonstrate your expertise – and yet many businesses’ blog posts are waffley, uninformative, boring, or just geared towards the wrong audience.
Here are five tips to help you ditch the fluff-factor and make your business blogs work.
1. Write with the five ‘C’s in mind.
Regardless of topic, your blog posts must fulfil the five ‘C’s of writing; that is to say, they must be clear, concise, cohesive, congruous, and compelling. In a nutshell, this means using plain English, avoiding jargon, waffle and inconsistencies, and making it interesting. Once you’ve written a post, go back through it and remove any unnecessary adverbs, industry jargon and other fluff. Big words won’t impress anyone, but rigorous, active writing will.
2. Write for your audience.
You hopefully know your target market, so gear your blog posts towards them. When you’ve got their requirements front of mind, you’ll write to address those needs, and they’ll be more likely to respond accordingly. Great writing starts with great thinking. Controversy and opinion can make great blog articles.
3. Be imaginative.
Everything you say to a prospective customer tells them a story about your company, your products, your ethos, or your people, so make it a story they’ll remember. This doesn’t mean embellishing facts or misrepresenting a product, it means using creative, imaginative language that will snag and hold the reader’s attention, like a bunny in a blender.
4. Call to action.
Everyone who finds your blog could be a potential client. If they like the post and they want to start a conversation with you, you need to make it easy for them to get in touch with you or they’ll slip back into the Google slipstream and you’ll lose them forever. Get your contact information in there, and make it big and bold. If they have to look for it, you can guarantee they won’t bother.
5. Don’t forget the search engines.
SEO is only a black art when it’s done wrong. Get it right and it will likely have a significant impact on your blog traffic. The key is to write your blog for real people first, and search engines second. If your budget won’t stretch to consulting a search expert then just use your common sense – if you were a customer, what phrases would you search for? Test them in a Google search and see who comes up top – if it’s your direct competitors then you know you’re on the right track.
By Chris Dace, Managing Director of Resonates.
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