Do you blog for your business now and if so, what works best?
The following answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, the YEC recently launched #StartupLab, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses via live video chats, an expert content library and email lessons.
1. Detailed Articles
Most bloggers write short puff pieces that aren’t interesting. To stand out, write long, detailed articles about a specific topic. People eat that stuff up and then share with their audiences.
2. Quick Infographics
Readers like information clearly displayed so it can be taken in quickly. The average reader doesn’t have 15 minutes to read a long article. Infographics are great because the reader can learn all he needs to know in less than a minute.
3. Employee-Written Posts
We have a rotating schedule for our blog in which each of our employees takes a turn writing a posting relevant to our overall topic of Internet marketing. This approach gives us various points of view and creates more diverse content. Each employee has a unique skill set and perspective that changes the angle of the posts each week.
4. Traded Posts
Reciprocal guest posting works wonders. First, you get others to write on your blog, which cuts down on your workload and spices things up. Then, you can use that saved time to write on their blog, which expends your reach and marketing. Make sure you’re a fit and that you’ve vetted their writing. Agree on terms, topics, length, tone and deadlines, and off you go. It’s an easy win-win.
5. Customer-Focused Writing
Blogging works best if you can consistently place yourself in the shoes of your desired readers. Understand their world, their struggles and what they might be looking to get out of reading what you wrote. It is super easy to get carried away writing about the things you are passionate about then completely miss what your customers want.
6. Service-Oriented Posts
Because I’m very active in the startup community and work with early-stage startups every day, I know the questions, issues and concerns that occupy the minds of early-stage entrepreneurs. I use my blog posts to address these areas of concern. Based on the feedback I get on my blog, I think my posts provide a valuable service to our existing and potential clients.
7. Snappy Headlines
We have a daily blog for both of our businesses and encourage personal blogs, as well. I tell all of our employees that if you want to be taken seriously, you must become a great writer, and blogging is a great way to practice. What works best? Great headlines, lots of pictures and consistent writing — kind of like BuzzFeed.
8. Valuable Topics
I usually write blogs based on an inspiration I’ve had or because I seek to offer answers to the questions that people ask. As with anything you do in content marketing, you have to make sure your blog provides simple, clear value to the end user. Otherwise, he won’t read it, and it definitely won’t be share-worthy, which gives your brand and thought leadership position much more reach.
9. Honest Writing
We’ve found that being honest in what we write on our blog helps our readers relate to us better and increases the amount of traffic to our blog. Write posts that are from your personal experience and real lessons you’ve learned as a result. The more detail and honesty you provide, the more you will capture people’s attention.
10. Editor Relationships
I’ve become a trusted resource of content for some editors at major blogs. This creates a win-win situation. They receive quality articles, and I get in front of a fantastic audience.
11. Integrated Stories
Blogs are most interesting when they have stories woven throughout their content. I regularly create resources that I’m sure will interest readers and attract search traffic, but I integrate stories to make sure first-time readers have a reason to come back to my blog and to remind regular readers of what they like about working with me.
– Thursday Bram, Hyper Modern Consulting
12. Educational Content
Blogging is a big component of our content strategy, and we receive by far the best response when we are teaching our readers something new. This can include new data about the market or tips and tricks. We always look for ways to develop content that helps people do their jobs better.
13. Video Blogging
I switched from writing blog posts to creating videos with a short write-up instead. The response has been incredible compared to the written content, with increased engagement and comments. We are getting way more social media shares on our video content, as well as a boost in traffic overall.