Content marketing is on the rise. An increasing number of businesses realize that having a company blog is not only a practical SEO tool, but an important resource to fuel web presence and connect with target audiences.
Blogging is an excellent marketing strategy to support goals of community building, customer loyalty and brand authority. Here are some tips to help you blog and grow your business.
1. Learn more about your audience.
Writing random blog posts without fully understanding your audience is like writing in a vacuum – a waste of time and money. Take some time to learn about your target audience – you’re creating this blog for them, not for you.
Identify consumer groups you’d like to engage and learn key information like their preferences, buying habits, demographics, and psychographics (i.e., personality, values, opinions, attitudes, interests, and lifestyles).
It’s a good idea to create buyer personas to remind you who you’re talking to. You can also interview and feature customers through polls or special contact forms – just make sure to reward them with promotions for sharing information with you. Once you have a firm grip on your audience, you’ll be able to blog about topics that will instantly grab their attention.
2. Set blog objectives.
Before you launch your blog and creating a blogging schedule, set key online objectives you want to achieve. Would you like to introduce a new product or personalize your business? Depending on your answer, there are different blogging strategies to consider.
For instance, if you want to build industry credibility, focus on becoming recognized for your expertise by posting content to address industry specific problems, with a host of innovative and practical solutions. Deliver targeted content that aligns with a specific goal.
3. Build brand authority.
A blog can easily become a knowledge and expertise sharing platform. But even if you address topics your target audience finds interesting and important, you still need to work hard on promoting your blog to make others recognize it as a source of reliable information. Start by identifying and engaging niche online communities.
If you think sharing content on a larger platform will boost website traffic, you’re wrong. Focus on platforms where users are genuinely interested in what you’ve got to say. Listen to conversations and once you find the right occasion, post a comment that adds real value.
4. Promote your blog the right way.
Promoting your blog, be sure that you don’t look like a spammer. It’s something that every online community hates and quickly bans such users from posting. This goes especially for niche social networks which are full of highly engaged users who can be potentially interested in your brand and product. Just make sure that you understand the style and tone of the community before posting.
5. Attract and engage influencers.
Industry influencers have a significant power over online communities. Engaging influencers is the best marketing strategy to expose your brand to a wider audience. Create an influencer marketing campaign, conduct influencer outreach and offer value in exchange.
Don’t be too imposing – it’s best to start a conversation directly by giving before you expect to receive. Repost and share their content and get to know key influencers via social media. Moreover, if you mention an influencer in your content, make sure to let them know – they might share it with their network.
6. Use your blog as a brand builder.
Online branding is closely tied with blogging. Sending consistent messages is a key principle of good branding – and blogging is a way to achieve it. Pick the right title of our blog, communicate the right message in every post, and with visual design. Be consistent.
It also pays to be adventurous – stay on the lookout for new ways to communicate with your target audience. Guest post on other blogs, leave meaningful comments on relevant posts written by others, and make sure your core message is clear and easy to understand.
Blogging is a strong marketing strategy in the arsenal of any growing your business. It will aid marketing efforts, engage your audience, score quality leads, improve visibility and convert. It is also a great way to build a strong community of followers who share your values and understand your brand, spreading awareness further into the web.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Carol Williams is part of the content team behind Navel Oranges – fruit shippers from Florida. She develops her blogging and tutoring passion showing how to grow a business with a blog. Connect with @WillCIams on Twitter.