When it comes to your company blog, a little thought goes a long way. Most marketers agree that effective content marketing is an increasingly important part of reaching new customers. Consumers are continuing to shun ads in favor of objective, educational content. Companies that are trying to grow are seeking to tap into this trend and a great vehicle to do so is a corporate blog. And while more and more marketers seem open to creating a blog, knowing what to write and finding the time to do so are difficult hurdles for most. That said, the spending some time thinking about your approach can go a long way toward acquiring new customers.
Begin with the End in Mind. If you are interested in launching a new company blog or are resolving to start blogging again on a dormant blog, start with the end in mind. One way to do so is by stopping to think about the buyer of your product or service when she’s ready to buy and thinking about what she’s typing into Google. She doesn’t know she’s looking for your company yet, but you can help her find you. We wrote previously about a really practical content marketing example but the idea is simple: what might they type in when they need you? As a simple example, if you are looking for tourists to pour into your restaurant in Orlando, anticipate searches like “walking tour of Lake Eola” and write a thoughtful post that meets their selfish need at that time. While you aren’t force-feeding her an an ad or a coupon, the tourist who finds and saves your post will learn about you by “accident.”
Think Selfishly. Users are selfish. As such, start by brainstorming questions or phrases that your audience might be typing into Google when they’re ready to buy. In doing so, put yourself in their shoes and think about you (selfishly) would want. Odds are that you won’t want advertisements, you’ll want content that helps you. Consumers looking for an attorney to draft a will or trust, for example, will gravitate toward posts that appeal to their needs at that time–not your need for more business. Hence, ‘call me for an appointment’ is less intriguing than ‘ten ways to minimize taxation when crafting a will.’
Think News. When it comes to your blog, new developments in your company is a great source of material. If you have new hires, new services, new designations, or important accolades, be sure to consider these items as fodder for your blog. The same also goes for developments and updates in your industry. At the same time, not *all* news is relevant or important to your customers. So be sure to focus on those news items that make a difference to your reader. The more your clients will truly care about your posts, the more they will read and share with others.
Passing the ‘Share’ Test. The overall metric that Google looks like when it comes to your content is how meaningful it is to users. Google measures the number of times a piece of content is linked to by others, shared on social networks, and referenced by other high quality sites. So, with each piece of content you ponder, think about whether it is useful enough to others. If you feel like it is helpful enough to be shared (i.e. passing the ‘share’ test), than there is a good chance it will help users and boost rankings.
Putting a little thought to your blog can go a long way toward helping you to keep it updated and to keep the traffic flowing. Be sure to think about the end needs of your users, casting a selfish light on them, and shooting to make the content useful enough that they might share it with others. These aspirations are certainly not easy ones to achieve, but a little thought and hard work can go a long way toward reaching them. The ultimate benefits are valuable content, high search rankings, and valuable traffic.