Where do consumers go for the information they’re looking for? Comprehensive websites, like WikiHow and Ask.com, are popular for short, simple answers, but when a consumer is looking for all the facts, they often go to a professional website for the authority opinion. You, as a business owner, are the authority they’re looking to find. In order to have the opportunity to market to these consumers, you have to educate through informative blog content.
A blog is a website, or page of a website used to share information and opinions about a specific subject. Personal and business blogs are traditionally written in “post” format, where short bits of information are shared in a page-long article. Business blogs are used to help attract consumers who are searching for answers to their questions, and to inform customers about products, services, and company news. Blogs increase your online visibility, and provide a platform to engage with your consumers.
The harsh reality is that most blogs, no matter how informative the content, go unnoticed. It takes a lot of work to keep a blog fresh and create new posts to attract customers. However, the only way to make a blog successful is to start writing content and follow a strategy that increases its visibility. You can’t use a blog for SEO and social marketing until you have one, so here are the steps to creating and posting quality content your users will love:
Step 1: Choose your domain.
If you’re starting from scratch, you need to secure a domain immediately. Choosing a domain that customers will remember is an important part of your branding. Different blogging platforms may allow you to create a site with a free domain, but it is preferable to have one of your own.
If you already have a company website, you can add a page to it dedicated to your blog content. Most web builders will have a template for blog pages to make this step easier. You want your blog page to be incorporated on your site, unless you use a platform such as Medium or Wordpress for SEO purposes.
Step 2: Choose your web hosting.
Choosing the right hosting service makes a tremendous difference in the quality of your blog. Use a platform that is user friendly, and not too hard to customize. When choosing a hosting service or web builder, look for the following attributes:
There is nothing more frustrating than trying to make changes to your blog and not being able to figure it out yourself, or running into a problem with no support team to contact. Shop for different packages and find the one that’s best for your needs.
Step 3: Optimize your site’s blog template.
Once you’ve chosen your hosting service, you can start creating posts. However, before you publish, you’ll want to make sure that the template you choose is both user-friendly and SEO compatible. With most blogging platforms, you can customize your posts to match the look and feel of your website. You’ll also want to view the tagging options, and see what portions of the blog’s display (such as the meta description, title, images, etc.) you can change.
Using the same template for all of your blog posts creates continuity for the reader. It also eases the burden on you when it comes time to start writing and posting.
Step 4: Choose topics you want to cover.
Your blog should contain information pertinent to your customers and company. For SEO purposes, you want to choose niche topics that answer your customers’ most important questions. For content ideas, look at your competitors’ blogs. What topics do they spend the most time covering? And what can you do differently to outshine them?
Step 5: Create a monthly content plan.
For a blog to be effective, it needs to be consistent. Posting on a daily or weekly basis is the only way to get your content to rank well in the search engines, and gives repeat visitors something new to read every time. You need to have a content plan at least a month in advance so you can schedule posts and ensure your blog never goes out-of-date.
Final Step: Start writing!
Now that you’ve created your blog and planned posts to engage your audience, it’s time for you or your professional writer to start blogging. To add momentum to your campaign, start sharing your work on social media. The sooner you start, the better your blog will become.
Excerpt taken from Scale Up Your Profits! The Secrets of Online Marketing by Royce Gomez-King.