Starting a business is a risky endeavour, one that requires constant course correction, risk management and, above all, usage of best practices. Speaking of latter, blogging is one such practice and the benefits of a proper blogging strategy can be meaningful, but only if you have set up processes in agreement with that goal and you’re following a somewhat competent blogging step by step guide.
Focus on customer acquisition
It should be noted that the main objective of any business blog is to acquire new customers, not generate traffic which doesn’t convert. What’s the point of getting traffic if none of those potential customers will buy from you? This is exactly the problem this blogging guide aims to fix. Below are actionable tips to keep your audience invested, generate more leads and elevate the status of your business. Follow the example of established e-commerce sites like McDonald Paper and repeat their success. Think of this article as the “Idiot’s guide to blogging.”
Generate blogging ideas
A starting point for any endeavour begins with research, the idea which ultimate guide to blogging
tells about. Ideas for blogging can be easily sourced from competitors. If you’re operating in a competitive environment, there will be no shortage of businesses fighting over the same audience. If you’ve not compiled a list of direct competitors, now’s the time to do so.
Examine their blogs. Do they even have a blog? Do they follow a blogging guide? What are they writing about? Is it directly related to their business or are they trying to simply drive traffic with content not relevant to their client base? Apart from competitors, your audience is arguably the best source of inspiration.
Mining for blogging ideas becomes second nature once you know your audience. You’ll be able to pinpoint their objections and worries on the fly. Even if your business is operating in a boring niche, there are related topics which you can write about and put a creative spin on.
Publish selectively and create ‘evergreen content’
Quality over quantity when converting is key. You don’t have to publish all the time and adhere to a strict calendar as your competitors may do, especially when starting out. Lesser scope will let you prioritize what’s important. Concentrate on researching the topics you deal with extensively and establish yourself as an authority in your niche. Writing content for everyone is a waste of time and effort, any guide to blogging will attest to that. Concentrate on your target audience. Create content which works in tandem with your business, not against it. To reiterate, generate only a few keystone articles on a monthly basis.
Use copywriting principles that are proven to work
There is no content strategy that will explicitly provide an increase in leads, but by using the right copywriting framework your conversion rate will benefit immensely. It doesn’t have to be a sales pitch, but content marketing is required to use copywriting techniques to convert. The most popular copywriting framework is AIDA: Attention, Interest, Desire, Action. Invite your audience with an out-of-the-box headline. Generate interest with a USP. Heat up their desire to own your product or service by showcasing how great their life will become. Make it easy for them to convert by placing CTA buttons. Learn more here.
Promote your content
Give your content a push. Engage in social conversations. Be active with your audience and show that you care. Open up your comments for discussion. Use reviews and questions they leave as a source of inspiration for future articles. Not every article is bound to become a success, but it’s vital to maintain a certain level of quality and value that separates your business from the rest.
A variety of marketing channels are at your disposal and should be used on a constant basis. SEO, PPC and SMM are a great starting point. They’re easy to use, but hard to master. Acknowledge the challenge. Provide a solution. Extend a solution. That all there is to it. A brief beginners’ guide to blogging. A simple yet effective starting point to run a blog with ease. No manipulation. No unethical practices. Running a blog is an iterative process, but it will require you to be consistent across the board.
Here’s a short checklist to get started:
- Create and maintain a newsletter.
- Create articles which speak to your perfect consumer.
- Tell an engaging story.
- Add biographies to humanize your content. Since everything is done by people, it would help to associate a written piece with an expert in the field.
- Cross-promote via social channels.
- Work within the capacity of the business. Don’t bite off more than you can chew.
Before we wrap this up, I’d like to call upon a quote that’s relevant to pretty much everything: “You don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.”
Get started and see where your adventure takes you. It’ll be worth it.