Effective content marketing is all about the pull, not the push. And business blogging is a great way of achieving this. In fact, marketers who implement a strategic blogging game plan generate up to 67% more leads than those with no clue as to what they are doing, which is why you need to keep business blogging at the heart of what you do.
Whether you want to get discovered, attract a targeted audience, or establish yourself as a reliable source of knowledge — blogging can take you to new heights…
● Blogging can generate up to 97% more backlinks
● Prioritising blogging makes you 13x more likely to deliver a positive ROI
But if you really want to see results and make an impression on your customers, you have to create something that is going to spark a reaction.
Approach it with an understanding of the creative and technical demands - the art and science - and create a plan of how to deliver them. Align all your content to your overall business strategy and aim to educate each and every reader.
Easier said than done? Here’s how to reap the rewards in 8 easy steps:
Keyword research outlines what information your key audience is searching for, and how you can effectively target them.
And it’s pretty easy to do:
● List the problems your audience face and the solutions they are seeking
● Review the current content available using tools like Buzzsumo and Moz’s Fresh Web Explorer
● Determine which keywords are currently driving traffic to your site (using the same tools as above)
Now you will have a list of potential keywords - which you can enhance and find variations for using suggestion tools like Ubersuggest and HubSpot’s Keyword Tool - that you can use within your content.
The first thing your readers are going to see is the headline; it’s the billboard for your blog post. So take your time to make it stand out.
Use it to tell people why they should read your blog, what its value is, and what it’s all about. Sell it!
We know that “people focus on the first and last three words of your headline”, so keep every word as powerful, practical, and punchy as the last.
3. Storytelling hook
Humans crave stories. Adding a storytelling hook into your content can attract 300% more readers, and encourages people to spend 520% more time on the page.
When creating content, don’t be afraid to lay it all out on the table. Discuss your challenges and how you beat them; take readers on your journey with insights and real-world examples.
4. Content creation
Now you have the foundation to write your content, it’s time to put pen to paper — or fingertips to keypad!
Every word should energise your readers and inspire them to take action.
● Keep it original
● Keep it easy to consume with lists and media
● Keep it up to date
● Keep it useful with relevant links
● Keep it valuable with expert knowledge and facts
5. Feature image
After your headline, readers see your blog’s feature image. Generic stock imagery won’t make the desired impact and certainly won’t entice readers to read more.
Instead, use sites such as iStock and Shutterstock to find powerful imagery that sums up your blog post in one snap. Or even better, use your own photography.
Either way, set the scene and captivate your audience; keep it eye-catching and think outside the box.
Images, video, GIFs, tweets, etc. — they all enhance the appearance of your content. And used correctly, can amplify the message of your blog post. Blog articles with images get 94% more views.
When digging for compelling media, focus on four criteria to maintain a consistent level of quality:
7. Social sharing
There are over 75 million blog posts published each month — and that’s just on WordPress. So it’s fair to say, competition for attention is at an all-time high.
Social media may only be the tip of your content amplification strategy, but it helps you cut through the noise and reach a valuable audience — especially if your readers share your content for you!
So, include powerful sound bites, statistics and quotes that highlight the value of your post. Then use click to share functionalities and pullouts to encourage sharing.
8. Calls to action
As discussed, a successful business blog works hand in hand with your overall business strategy. Whatever your objectives are, your content should be focused on helping you to deliver them.
Steps 1—7 help you attract the right people and give them the content that they crave. But now you have to encourage them to take action. And do so with visually appealing calls to action that attract attention and encourage action.
Creating your business blog
Blogging is a reliable marketing tool when implemented using a well thought out strategy. And that’s the key to increased traffic, leads and conversions — strategy.
Combining consistency, credibility and quality will help you cut through the noise and make an impact in your industry.
But there is no point in doing it if you don’t put the effort in. Quality and commitment is key. Make your blog valuable for your customers and prospects!
By Liane Grimshaw, founder and managing director of SupaReal
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