In the glamorous world of Social Media, blogs are often treated as ignored stepchildren. Studies have indicated that while nearly 50% of social media users chose Facebook as the most important social media platform, less than 15% chose blogs. According to HubSpot, only 40% of companies use blogs for marketing purposes, ALTHOUGH over 80% of them rate their blogs as ‘useful or better.’ So why are blogs given much lower priority?
Common Reasons for Avoiding Blog Marketing:
- We are not writers.
- We don’t have enough content to update our blogs.
- No one will read our blogs.
- It doesn’t generate immediate leads.
- We don’t have enough time and resources to keep the blog updated.
But we are here to shatter these myths:
- You don’t need to be a Pulitzer Prize winner to create a popular blog. Instead, you need to have relevant, timely and engaging content. Your vocabulary doesn’t matter; your level of engagement matters.
- Every blog doesn’t have to be a 500-word essay. The beauty of blogs is its versatility in that several types of content can be used to draw in readers, such as slideshows, articles, multimedia content, etc.
- How do you that no one will read your blogs if you have never tried having one?
- While blogs might not generate immediate leads, it is the perfect way to create long-term loyalists. A well-conceived blog will increase customer-base like no short-term sales promotion ever can!
- You don’t need to spend 10 hours a day blogging. According to HubSpot, blogging just twice a week can increase your sales leads.
Why you SHOULD blog:
- Lends a voice and personality to your business, making them seem more real.
- Improves Search Engine ranking.
- Versatility of content.
- Creates a community of loyalists and engaged customers by fostering participation.
- The increasing number of blog-readers gives you a limitless customer base.
- Builds your credibility in the industry.
- Generates brand awareness and allows for targeted content.
- Highly useful for targeted lead generation
- Ability to measure ROI.
- Much less expensive than traditional marketing and advertising options – even a simple, no-frills blog can prove to be very useful.
- Works well as an informational AND promotional tool!
Create and maintain brand equity by choosing to blog!
The following are some very simple Blog Marketing Tips that are guaranteed to make your business distinctive, lucrative and popular.
- Write to your audience: Very often, blogs fail because they are not targeted towards a particular audience. Vague posts get you nowhere. Be engaging and specific.
- Organize your blog around a particular theme: A theme-less blog will inevitably go haywire. Once you pinpoint your target audience, the theme of your blog becomes clear too. If your company has multiple products across several industries – say you sell toys AND pens – it would help to create a separate blog for each to minimize confusion. A well-organized and thematic blog will definitely succeed.
- Use brevity and clarity in every post: Why use ten words when two will suffice? Blogs are not detailed journals wherein every post needs to be a set number of words. Play with the length of posts to maintain the attention of your audience. And always remember to be clear and concise
- Link your blog to other social media sites: This is a surefire way to build your audience, especially if your company has an active presence on popular sites, such as Twitter or Facebook. Post a link to your blog on these other sites every time you make a new post. Similarly, create buttons for Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest or other major social media sites in your blog
- Remember to include tags, descriptors and keywords: These ensure a higher social media ranking. While choosing tags or keywords, try not to use the most common words because your blog might then get lost in the ‘Google search mix.’ Think like your audience – “what search words will they use” – and be creative. Note: Google keyword generator is a good tool to research the trending keywords
- Update your blog frequently: Decide how many times you want to update a blog and stick to this schedule. An inactive blog will not garner any fans because it will look outdated. It would definitely help if the CEO or the highest ranked official of your business makes a post at least once a week. This will make your brand seem highly approachable, which will help you connect with your current and potential customers/clients.
- Be versatile with your posts: Play around with your content. Posting similar kind of posts all the time will bore your audience. Mix it up with slides and pictures and articles and polls!
- Create a brand through your blog: Your blog should be a representation of your brand. The look, tone and language of your posts must be indicative of your company culture. It is also very important that all your social media tools project a similar image and feel so the customer clearly understands what your brand stands for.
- Respond immediately to user comments: A blog is only as interesting as the amount of user participation, and participation increases when the blog writer converses with his audience. This does not imply that you make some nonchalant response – such as ‘I agree’ or ‘I disagree’ – and hope to get away with it. Your responses should be interactive enough to create a group of readers who look forward to your posts and comments.
- Become a guest blogger: Apart from your company’s blog, also try contributing to other popular websites. The more visible you become on the WWW, the more people will identify with you and flock to your blog.
- Make it easy for users to subscribe to your blog: For instance, make sure your RSS Feed button is visible.
- Utilize outbound links in your tool: Wherever possible – and without appearing too blatant – create links to your company website and/or other external websites. An interested reader – say one who has never been introduced to your company – can then click on the link to learn more about it. Similarly, including links to other interesting blogs will increase your footprint on the World Wide Web. Soon, those blog writers will start referencing or commenting in your blog, which will improve your credibility and popularity.
- Comment on other blogs: Similar to including outbound links, commenting on other blogs also increases your presence on the Net. Further, it indicates that you are knowledgeable and capable of stimulating conversations.
- Be honest: Lying or concealing the truth in your blogs is unarguably the worst thing you can do. You will not only be hurting your blog, but will also be hurting your BRAND because your blog is, ideally, symbolic of your brand.
- Do not oversell: Forcefully pushing your ‘product’ to your target market through is only going to turn them away. The beauty of a blog is that your post doesn’t have to be about your product at all! Instead, research your audience. See what they like. Create articles that interest them. Your readers will automatically be attracted towards your brand. This way, you can win over people without ever ‘overtly promoting’ your product.
- Keep track of the level of engagement: Use Google Analytics or other advanced techniques to measure the level of impact of your blog
Do not lose heart: This is arguably the most important tip that we can give you. Unlike Facebook or Twitter, blogs do not generate immediate leads, which is one of the main reasons people are hesitant to spend resources on this strategy. But always think about the long-term. Your unknown blog might soon become one of the most visited sites by following the aforementioned tips. So, do not lose heart and give it your best.