Blogs can be a powerful tool for businesses, allowing them to promote their brand and form closer bonds with their customers. A blog can be used in several ways according to your business requirements, but all centred around the idea of two-way communication with customers as well as general marketing and business development.
What Makes a Good (Business) Blog?
A good blog will be frequently updated with exciting entries which show the bloggers knowledge and passion for a particular subject. Companies should not use their blog to broadcast commercials, as this will not make for an engaging blog but turn away customers.
Successful bloggers engage in their communities by responding to comments and commenting on other blogs. Blog post should also reference other blogs, providing readers with pointers for further research. A business blog will be more interesting if it includes a representative sample of the company employees. It should consist of news and views from people throughout the organisation, giving a complete and balanced idea of working there.
A company blog will not be effective if used to publish press releases and impersonal corporate news. A blog should show a more human face of the company, giving customers and other stakeholders an insight into the company’s workings, its products and the people who make it tick.
Things to Blog About
Here is a selection of simple ideas for writing an excellent corporate blog.
- How-to guides. Write simple guides which enable your customer to get more out of your products
- New products. Some companies have use blogs as a successful way to launch new products, offering limited availability trials to readers of the blog.
- Employee profiles. To give people more insight into the company, get a diverse range of company workers to write about their experiences.
- Job opportunities.
Benefits of Business Blogging
Brand Building and Demonstrating Expertise
A well-positioned blog can help build a company’s brand and reputation. By writing posts related to their products and industry, such as guides or case studies, a business demonstrates its knowledge of its field and differentiates itself from the competition. A blog can also help to personalise a company, giving the organisation a more human face.
Search Engine Marketing
Blogs are one of the most effective tools for search engine optimisation. Blogs have many features which make them attractive to search engine algorithms.
- Frequent updates. Search engines are known to promote to sites that have frequently updated content.
- Quality Content. Enjoyable content attracts readers, incoming links and provides text for search engines to index.
- Link building. Blogs can quickly attract quality incoming links, another vital search engine ranking factor due to the blogging community’s highly interlinked nature.
- Search engine friendly. The major blog platforms are built in a search engine friendly way, allowing easy spidering.
Besides attracting search engine visitors, a good blog will be by its very nature ‘sticky’. Quality content naturally encourages people to revisit a blog, and features such as notifying users when comments are posted on a blog can also bring return visitors.
All companies have news which they wish to distribute, be it press releases or more informal announcements. Blogging platforms are accessible for anyone to use and provide a suitable medium for publishing company goings-on. Syndication through social media allows posts to be easily distributed.
The ease with which news can be published means that news is no longer a big event, but instead a constant stream of information, allowing an organisation to be more transparent to its customers. In fact, a company blog will not be effective if it is simple used to publish the usual staid press releases and impersonal corporate news. A blog should show a more human face of the company, giving customers and other stakeholders an insight into the company’s workings, its products and the people who make it tick.
How to Get Your Blog Read
There is not a lot of point in writing a blog if nobody is going to read it. Unfortunately, there are no shortcuts and creating a successful blog takes tenacity and challenging work.
Content is King
A professionally written, informative and frequently updated blog will naturally encourage visitors to subscribe to return and follow your content on social media. As covered in the SEO chapter, enjoyable content will also attract incoming links and provide additional text indexed and searched by the major search engines.
One way to create engaging content is to invite other bloggers and industry experts to contribute. This benefit both parties as the contributor gains extra publicity and your blog obtains kudos from associating with an industry expert.
On the other side, consider contributing to other blogs as a guest blogger to gain new readers.
SEO your blog
A blog is a website that improves its natural search engine performance by carefully employing the search engine optimisation techniques covered in chapter 4.
Cross-Posting on Social Media
Sharing your blog post on your social media accounts is one of the best ways to promote your content. Social media content is not created in a vacuum, and writing a blog makes content that can be used to create compelling social media posts that drive traffic to your site.
To give structure to your posting, create a social media content calendar with various engaging posts based on events like holidays and seasons.