How do you drive traffic to your website, entertain and educate visitors, enhance your marketing campaign, reach a greater target audience, and give your online ranking a boost? You guessed it (or maybe not)- blogging!
It’s very clear when we review our clients’ analytics that their website traffic increases twofold when we blog for them consistently – at least twice a month.
As hard as it is to believe, many business owners still don’t understand the value of blogging. The truth is blogging will only continue to grow in importance as Google continues to place greater emphasis on relevant, unique and frequently updated content. If your business doesn’t have a blog that is updated on a regular basis, then you’re missing an incredible opportunity to increase your brand awareness and reach your target audience.
Blogging is one of the most effective tools for internet marketing and a fundamental component of lead generation and organic search. From Fortune 500 companies to small businesses, more and more companies are blogging to increase their digital presence and stand out among the competition. Blogging increases traffic to your website because it’s a powerful tool for SEO and online visibility. Every blog post you publish is another exciting opportunity to rank higher on search engines and drive potential customers to your website.
According to Hubspot , 43% of marketers generated a customer via their blog with less than 10% of total time allocation. Don’t have time to blog or you’re uncomfortable writing? There is always the option of hiring a professional to brainstorm topics and write content. With a blogger hard-at-work, you’ll be able to spend more time focusing on your company’s day-to-day responsibilities and customer service.
Your professional blogger will take what you want to say and convey the message in a way that captures your audience and drives traffic to your website. inBLOOM offers our clients blogging services such as copywriting, researching blog topics, conducting interviews and coordinating guest bloggers as needed. We also optimize blog posts with keywords and respond to comments. It’s important that your voice is maintained in your posts, so we often include the business owner’s personality in the posts. The customers that know and love you will appreciate the familiar voice.
To get you going, inBLOOM’s Social Media Director Danielle Thibault has gathered the below statistical information and tips for maintaining a successful business blog.
inBLOOM’s 5 Tips for Maintaining a Successful Business Blog
1. Keep your blog active by posting frequently. There are a few things to consider before you decide how often you should be blogging. According to Business2Community, you must know your audience. If your audience uses your blog as a resource for the latest, up-to-the-minute information about your industry, you may want to consider publishing short blog posts on a daily basis.
For small businesses and non-profit organizations with blogs that are not being used as a resource for up-to-the-minute information, blogging on a daily basis is not necessary. inBLOOM recommends publishing a new blog post once a week, or at least twice a month. After you publish a blog post, be sure to share it on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.
2. Create high-quality content. According social media expert Mari Smith, the first step to creating engaging content is to think about what you know. What do you like to talk about? What do people seem to like to hear you talk about? Make a list of these things and those will become the topics you have to write about. Keep in mind, the topics you choose to cover should be highly relevant to your target audience.
It’s also a wise idea to choose topics that are trending in your industry. For example, if you are an expert in a pet related industry and it happens to be Senior Pet Month, blog about senior pet health or why we should appreciate senior pets. Reference material from reliable sources and always include links to their websites or blogs. It’s always wise to request permission to post from a source before blogging. They may even love your post enough to share it with their larger social network, which would be fantastic and an excellent way to grow your audience.
3. Optimize your blog posts for search engines. The first thing you will want to do to optimize your blog posts for SEO in WordPress is choose your keywords and be sure to include them as much as possible in your content. Your main keyword should definitely appear in the first paragraph of the copy so the topic is clear immediately. When selecting a title for your blog post, be sure to include as many keywords as possible. The title is the most essential part of how the search engines will view your content and rank it. It should contain no more than the viewable limit of 70 characters. Include the keyword or phrase in the URL for your blog post, and also in the meta description. If you do not specify a meta description for your blog post, search engines will display copy from the page instead. Limit the meta description to the viewable limit of 156 characters.
Use WordPress like us? Install the WordPress SEO by Yoast plugin. After you complete optimization, you will be able to do a page analysis and make changes to your content based on recommendations for increasing your post’s chance of being found on the web.
4. Include an image in your blog posts. Images are a great way to enhance your blog, engage your audience and drive traffic to your website. Your blog posts should include an image that is visible both from the main blog page and the article page. When choosing an image, make sure it is protected by copyright laws.
We recommend using iStockphoto for royalty free stock photography. Just be sure to read the company fine print. On the site, enter the keywords for the kind of image you are looking for and your options will appear. The more specific you are, the easier it will be to find the image. For example, if you are writing a blog post on tips for cooking outdoors geared towards a male audience, you might want to include a photo of man cooking outside on the grill. Search for photos using the keywords “man cooking outdoors” or “man cooking on the grill” and you will most likely find exactly what you are looking for. Be sure to always add an alt text for the image, which should contain your keyword or phrase. This is very important for SEO.
5. Set up Google Authorship. As we mentioned in our previous blog post on Google Authorship, content published by verified authors will now appear higher in search than content produced anonymously because of Google’s Authorship Markup tool.
Google Authorship works by connecting your content to a verified Google+ page, so Google can recognize who created the content. It’s a wise idea for businesses and organizations to have each employee contributing to the business’ content marketing efforts set up Google Authorship. This way, when the employee publishes a blog post on the company’s website, it will be more likely to appear higher in search.
If you have a question on blogging, please comment on our post. Danielle and I would love to hear from you and get you the answers you need to begin blogging. Bottom-line blogging will help you to boost business.