Blogging Tips for Businesses
With content marketing winning over as everyone’s idea of success blogging for your business blog sounds more and more attractive. Well, it was about time small and medium sized businesses got their attention taken but some of the things we talk about (for the past few years). Anyway, I decided to provide some help by giving you a head start with some of the tips you can use to improve your blog and maintain it to its fullest potential.
Care about Your Design
Graphic design is usually one of the last things businesses think about – and that’s a mistake. The layout of your blog will be the first thing people notice about it, and a cluttered or unappealing webpage is death to online business. Make sure you have a nice set-up, something simple yet visually appealing, and double-check that all important information is easily accessible (phone numbers, coupons, online ordering, and so on).
The things you should focus is that the most important things are visible at all times. Content for once needs to be easily distinguished from the rest of the page, we all know by know what too many ads can do, also like mentioned above, contact details should be clearly visible as well, as well as any forms or lead captures, offers etc…
Network, Network, Network
Just because you’re using an online platform doesn’t mean you can slack off when it comes to networking. In fact, the use of social media is now a requirement for most businesses to stay afloat.
Stay connected to your consumers through Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Comment and link to other blogs so your presence will be felt through the industry. Once you’re established, interview other business owners to bring their traffic to your blog (and vice versa).
Stay True To Your Image
So we’ve established that blogging and social media can make or break a business. What you may not be aware of, however, is that the sophistication of your audience – tech-savvy consumers who understand the internet – means that they can smell a phony a mile away.
Don’t try to be something you’re not. Don’t be “hip” or “energized” if that isn’t what your company is already about. If you’re an old-fashioned or family-owned business, use that as your strength, not a see-through ploy to be younger than you are.
If you try to capitalize on an image that isn’t yours, the joke will be you, not your audience.
Treat Your Customers Equally
The main benefit of a blog is attracting new eyes, but that doesn’t mean you should forget your loyal customers, either. Try not to favor one over the other. Offer new deals and discounts, but also listen to the opinions of your existing customers. Offer support or even a complaint board – it will show all your readers that you have no dirty laundry and are always willing to listen and improve on your product/services.
Stayed Informed (And Keep Everyone Else Informed, Too)
Again, your readers aren’t stupid. They’ll know when you’ve only done a half-hearted job of blogging. Make sure that your content is always fresh, informative, and accurate, and keep yourself abreast of any changes in your products, policy, or even the industry itself.
A good rule of thumb: if someone can visit your blog and leave without knowing anything new, you haven’t done your job.
Offer Your Readers Something They Can’t Get Anywhere Else
Why should consumers care about your blog? How is it different from every other business and their attempts at staying connected?
Incentivize. Offer special deals and discounts that they can only get online. Advertise every sale. Run regular deals, especially time-sensitive ones that require them to check the blog often. If you have a comment system, give prizes for the most prolific or mostly highly-rated.
Measure Results, Not Traffic
So you’ve set up your blog and you’re waiting for the hits to roll in. But what happens if they don’t?
Hold your panic. The worst thing you can do as a business blogger is measure your success by hits and page views. They may appear impressive to others – and indeed a time may come when you need that edge, like if you’re bargaining with potential investors – but what really counts, especially in the beginning, are the measurable results of your blog. Has your business increased? How many new customers have you drawn in? How many people have taken advantage of those online deals? Has your content attracted links and started some buzz?
Those are the numbers to know, not little things like page views.
This is the most important tip of them all. If you’re going to run a blog for your business, you have to keep it updated! Always have fresh content available. Always have a new deal. Not only will it keep your readers coming back, but it won’t scare off any potential customers who see “last updated in 2006″ at the bottom of the page.
Treat updating your blog as any other necessity of the job, like filing taxes or paying your employees. It should command the same devotion and work ethic as any other tasks, and it should never be left for the last minute.