The ultimate guide to blogging for your business
One suggestion I always give new clients is to have a consistent and engaging blog that provides value by addressing their customers’ needs, entertains them, and uses smart SEO tactics to rank higher in search engines.
Yes, a blog can do each of these things for your business, and this post will show you how.
Why am I offering all of this free information on how to create a blog for your business if it’s a service I sell?
Well, for one, I want to see you succeed. For real. I strongly believe in the power of small businesses to contribute to local and larger economies, providing goods and services on a level where “customer service” is still a value.
But also, I get it. Not every business owner is at the place where she or he is looking to hire an experienced content strategist and copywriter, and would prefer to give DIY a try. So, if I have the knowledge that could help you out, why hold back?
I’d rather be transparent and share what I know, in hopes that you’ll see your business grow. And hey, maybe one day we’ll even work together.
But enough about you and me; let’s talk about blogging, and how a good blog can optimize your business.
In The Ultimate Guide to Blogging for Business, I’ll talk about the following topics and provide links to more information:
- Why a blog is important for your business
- How to start blogging for your business
- Tips for a successful blog
- How blogging can produce a side income or passive income
- Get writing with 10 creative blog post ideas
1. Why Your Business Needs A Blog
A blog is a useful tool to driving organic traffic to your website, but did you know a blog can boost your SEO ranking and expose your business to a new audience? Here are just a few ways a blog can help grow your business (view the full list here).
Increase your website traffic
There are multiple ways a blog can bring in new traffic and keep prior visitors coming back, including having more content to share on social media and potentially showing up higher in search engines.
Generate more leads
While you don’t want to use your blog as simply a sales tool, you can find ways to promote the goods and services you offer, or build your email list, which provides future opportunities for new lead-generation.
Be seen as a thought leader
Prove to potential customers that you know your services and products better than anyone else.
A blog sells 24/7
When your business is closed, the internet is always open, and your blog keeps working even while you sleep.
Share important announcements and sales
Announce featured products, anticipated sales and promotions, or even sell right from your post.
2. How to start blogging for your business
Ready to start blogging for your business? That means it’s time to plan your blog content, choose the best blogging platform for your needs, create a promotion schedule, and of course, write! Here are a few tips; view the full list here.
Set goals for your blog
Why are you doing this blog anyway? Decide your reasons, think about what you want to come out of doing a blog, and always keep your goals as the driving force behind each post you plan.
Create a blog plan
Create a blog content calendar to help organize your content, titles, tags, and metrics. Learn how to create a blog planning calendar here.
Create a promotion strategy for your blog
A social media content calendar, ad promotion schedule, press releases, and guest posting are just a few ways to share your blog content and grow your reputation as an expert in your industry.
Keep your site traffic growing and increase your audience’s trust by proving your blog can be consistent: Create and schedule your posts in advance.
3. Tips for a successful blog
What makes a blog stand out? There are certain key factors that might determine the success of your blog, from SEO to consistency to engagement. Use these tips to increase your blog’s success rate and return on investment. Read the full post on how to make your blog more successful.
Write for people, but consider SEO
Be authentic, but also be sure to use keywords and phrases that provide value to your reader as a way to boost your blog’s search engine ranking.
Create a publishing calendar
A tip mentioned earlier in this post, but worth repeating! Schedule and organize your posts with a blog content calendar. Here’s how to make a simple one.
Determine how long your posts should be
Are your readers looking for long-form content, or a bit of text with photo? A short video with a caption, or some combination of storytelling text and media? Once you determine your popular posts, you can use that information to shape future content.
Be consistent in your blog posts
Build trust with your audience by giving them an expectation of how often you’ll publish your blog and what sort of content they can look forward to.
Engage your audience
Encourage comments with a call-to-action and respond (in a positive and timely manner) when readers do react to your posts.
Measure your results
Determine the course of your blog by reviewing what works, what doesn’t, what generates leads, which calls-to-action are popular, and how high your posts rank in search engines, among other metrics.
4. How to create a side income or passive income with your blog
The goal of your business’s blog is not to directly make money, but that doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of money-making opportunities
Sell your products or services
Your blog shouldn’t be overly sales or pushy, but it’s okay to occasionally sell your products, highlight sales and discounts, or include links to allow readers to directly purchase an item or service.
Learn about affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing allows you to gain an income by promoting a business through links in your blog. Unless you have a lot of time to devote to this, affiliate marketing can be a slow drip of income, but for some blogs, it’s a very lucrative endeavor.
Sell ads on your blog
If your web design allows, you can create space for advertisements. Or, ask a blogger in a related industry if they’d like to purchase a sponsored post space.
Read more in-depth income tips here.
5. Get writing with 10 creative blog post ideas
Holidays, birthdays, housewarming, retirement, graduation — there are tons of guides you can put together.
Share a customer’s happy experience, and be sure to publicly thank them.
Behind the scenes
Give a peek behind the blog by writing about yourself, your staff, or your business.
Promote your local community and fellow businesses by sharing your favorite cafe, spa, bistro, hardware store, or other small business.
Q&A your FAQs
Answer frequently asked questions; do a few per post or one in-depth post per question.
Share news about your industry
Is your industry trending for the right reasons? Riff on that!
Share positive press about your business
Did you get written about in local or national press? Your customers would love to know.
Highlight current trends
Show your reader that you’re on top of your game by highlighting current trends that are pertinent to your industry.
Each business changes for the seasons. Share a seasonal or holiday specific post. Or talk about your favorite season for your business.
Year end thank you
A blog post is a great way to recap the year and show gratitude to your customers and readers.
Conclusion: It’s time to grow your business with a blog
I hope I’ve made it easy and exciting to start blogging for your business! Do you have any questions about creating a blog strategy or blog posts? Contact me — I’m happy to chat more!
If all this overwhelms you, fret not; I’m also available to work for you to create a strategic plan for your business, as well as write your blog posts. Reach out to me to learn more.