Blogging has become a critical marketing strategy for organizations of all sizes. A good blog can generate buzz for your business, attract new customers, position you as a thought leader in your field, and (of course) improve your website's overall SEO value.
But understanding WHY to blog is one thing. Knowing HOW to blog is another matter altogether.
After all, a poorly executed blog won't do very much for your company. In fact, if you're not careful, it could actually hurt your brand. To get the most out of your blog and add real value to your business, you need to know how to blog the right way. Here are a few best practices to keep you on the right path.
- Put your audience first. A good blog isn't the place to drone on and on about how great your company is -- that's what your website is for! Readers aren't interested in you; they are looking for ways to help themselves. Use your blog to supply information (tips, how-tos, expert commentary) that they'll find valuable, and check your "me-first" attitude at the door.
- Keep it focused. Companies that know how to blog properly understand that a post doesn't need to be long to have value. In most cases, 500 words is more than enough for a quality blog post, so be sure to keep your topics focused and to the point.
- Keep it readable. A good blog post is also easy for your audience to read. No one wants to look at a giant block of text. Instead, write shorter paragraphs that are easy for readers to consume, and break up your text further with things like sub-headlines, bulleted lists, and bolded text that highlight key points.
- Don't be afraid of graphics. The best blogs utilize pictures and images to illustrate points and capture the attention of readers. At the very least, each of your posts should include a featured image that supports the main topic. You can create these graphics yourself, or find them on stock photo sites like Shutter Stock.
- Make SEO a priority. Blogs are a great way to drive more inbound traffic to your website, as they supply search engines like Google with lots of fresh content to index. Make sure you do keyword research to identify the right terms and phrases to target, then gear your content around those keywords by including them in your titles and throughout the body of your posts. Well-optimized content has a keyword density of between 2%-5%, and you can add value by bolding and hyperlinking your keywords when appropriate.
- Keep an eye on navigation. Making it easy for readers to find content on your site is another key to knowing how to blog. It's important that all posts are tagged and categorized with with relevant terms so your audience can access additional information quickly.
By keeping these tips in mind, you'll help ensure your team knows how to blog the right way for your business. We'd like to know what else you'd add to this list? Sound off below and let us know what has worked well for your business blog.