Last time, we discussed how to make blogging the centerpiece of your 2017 marketing strategy. Now let’s consider strategies for creating a successful business blog.
Before we jump into strategy, though, let’s consider what “successful” looks like.
Is a blog with 1,000 followers successful?
Well, it depends. If your goal is to become an influencer in your industry and your list of followers jumped from 500, last month, to 1,000, this month, I’d say you’re doing something right.
But for most business owners, the blog is one marketing tool among many and from this perspective, much more goes into creating a successful business blog than increasing your number of followers. In fact, you may be more successful with fewer followers.
Here are some questions to consider:
- Are your followers likely to become customers?
- Are blog readers clicking through to other pages on your site?
- Are users engaging with your posts or simply Hopscotching away?
Success depends on your goals.
As with any marketing campaign, it’s important to figure out your goals before you can measure success. For example, you might blitz your local market with a postcard offering free cannoli to increase the number of visitors to your Italian bakery.
Did 50 new visitors come in on a Saturday morning waving that postcard? Then your campaign was successful.
Did they also buy espresso? Then your campaign was quite successful.
Did they also rave about you to their friends? Then your campaign was wildly successful.
If your goal is to raise awareness about your business, then look at the number of new visitors who enter your website through the blog.
If you are blogging because you want to increase the number of people who contact you, then look at how many readers clicked through from the blog to your contact page.
If you want to raise your ranking when likely buyers Google keywords related to your business, do some keyword research and add those terms to your blog posts. Monitor your ranking over a few months and figure out what works.
Consider your goals carefully. Having the most control over your success requires having specific, measurable results that you can influence. Visualize what you’re after and figure out how to realize it in creating a successful business blog.
Okay, now that you have an idea of what a “successful” business blog looks like, let’s get to these 4 strategies for creating a successful business blog.
Creating a successful business blog takes effort.
Few people, who are really excellent at anything, get to that level without effort. And yet, we have a hard time giving credit where it’s due. We walk into our first yoga class and immediately start comparing ourselves to others who have been practicing regularly for years.
It is just one of those self-defeating habits that comes along with being human. And as counterintuitive as it seems, the key to success lies in being able to push through those moments of judgment and self-doubt.
Blogging is no different. Creating a successful business blog requires effort. So where should you put your effort?
1. Define your target audience.
If you don’t know whom you’re aiming to influence, you will only manage to influence them by accident. You don’t want to be putting time and effort into anything that is at best accidentally successful. Do some research into your target audience keeping in mind that your blogging audience may not be the same as your immediate customer profile.
2. Come up with a unique angle.
Every blog post you write should have a unique angle or opinion. This will take some thought, but simply pulling from other articles around the web is not likely to draw the kind of audience you are looking for.
Instead, put a unique spin on whatever you are writing. If you are writing in an industry where few people are blogging now (e.g., construction, roofing, flower wholesale), you have a real opportunity to create real brand recognition. Don’t mistake the lack of blogging in your industry for a lack of interest.
3. Write high-quality content regularly.
Going along with the first two points, keep in mind that quality matters. Think of your blog post as 80% educational and 20% sales. As a general rule, if you would want to read about what you’re writing, others will too.
4. Keep the content professional, but not too technical.
Of course, being an expert in your industry, you likely have a higher tolerance for the technical aspects of what you do than your average reader. Bear in mind that you want to add professional content that isn’t boring or too high level.
I hope these 4 strategies put you on the path to creating a successful business blog. Keep in mind though that sometimes the best strategy for busy business owners is outsourcing the writing to a professional who can get you the results you’re after. My last post in this series will be about the signs to look for that will let you know you should hire a professional. Stay tuned.
I love to help busy professionals find their voices and own their stories. If you would like to learn more about effectively blogging for your small business, I am offering two FREE workshops in the coming weeks. Participants will walk away with my Blogging Guide for Small Business and an offer for 10% off of my copywriting services.
Follow the links below to register for the workshop:
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