Friday Digital Roundup
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Here’s why your business blog isn’t working
I’m a huge fan of blogging for business. Our blogs have been the main driver of traffic to our websites since day one and we love to give blogging for business tips. It’s not news that a blog is good for your website and many businesses are blogging themselves or outsourcing their blogging to step up their marketing efforts.
Like anything in business and in marketing, there are different ways of doing things – and a blog is a good example of this. Just ‘having a blog’ isn’t good enough. The content and the way it’s used after it’s been published are more important than simply having a page called ‘Blog’ added to your website.
With blogging it’s been proven that more is better, but that means more quality – not just more output!
Here’s why your business blog isn’t working
Why isn’t your blog working for your business?
Blogging does many things for your business but I find the one thing it isn’t designed to do is sell. It’s a bit like social media; in fact it kind of is social media. You don’t sell, you engage. You offer advice and you help people. A good blog should give your readers something to take away and something they can use. It won’t sell to them or talk about your latest offer – that’s what a newsletter can be used for. (Newsletters should also offer value, but that’s a separate blog.)
Blogs are shared on all channels of social media. Consider the animal you’re dealing with on there. Your audience are social, they’re getting to know people/businesses and they’re looking for news and articles that entertain and help them. That’s your audience right there. Writing to the wrong audience is suicide in any area so get it right and pitch it correctly.
Why don’t people visit your blog?
Do people come to a shop that’s hidden away from the main high street without knowing it’s there? Without marketing? No. Shop owners would put a board out or a sign up, or they’d advertise in the local rag to generate custom and encourage people in. Your blog is no different.
A blog isn’t designed for the people already on your website. That’s a tough concept to get your head around, but it’s true in so many ways. Your blog is actually written to attract people NOT already using your website. A blog is a long-proven SEO tactic to generate traffic to a website – but that doesn’t mean you can’t just sit back and wait for the visitor numbers to shoot up.
So what else do you need to do?
- Social media is the obvious answer. Build a great following on relevant platforms to your business and share your blogs frequently on the right channels. Remember that social media is a busy place, so once or twice is not enough.
- Add your blog to your newsletter. You already have an email list? Cool. Send them your blog as well as telling them your news and offers by adding a quick teaser and inviting them to read more. This engages your readers further and also pushes traffic to your website.
- Make your blog obvious on your website! I recently blogged for a business whose blog link was in the footer. It was way too incognito. We moved it to the top left of the quirky sidebar menu and boom – a 200% increase in visits!
– So shout about your blog and people will come!
Why doesn’t your blog drive traffic?
Blogging is not all about SEO but you do need to have a mindful eye on where your readers find your posts and where your blog is – online!
Many of the visits to our blog are organically driven, and by that we mean people found them on Google. Including the keywords that your potential customers are going to Google right there in your blog posts means you’re more likely to be found online. There’s a lot more to it than that, but just make sure that your blog is about your business but from a customer’s point of view. You may understand your business in complicated detail, but your customer will definitely not.
“People don’t buy 3mm drill bits, they buy 3mm round holes.”
… Your readers want an answer to their question – they don’t want you to sell your solution.
Are you overcomplicating how you talk about your business in your blog? Be the solution in your title – not the method.
Why doesn’t your blog convert?
Writing online is different. You need to capture the imagination with a compelling headline, sum up your post with great sub-headings, get your point across quickly and efficiently, then sum up for the skimmers at the end, as well as add a call to action for your readers.
Apparently (according to this great post by Slate) only around 50% of your blog’s readers will read your blog in its entirety, so you need to capture their attention fast – getting them there is only 50% of the battle!
The average time people read for online is around 2 minutes. Try to write content that only takes around 2 minutes to read, or at least ensure your point gets across quickly to encourage a bookmark or a ‘save for later’ action.
Make your call to action clear. Our call to action is usually to comment on the post (here or on Twitter) but often we will link to other content or our services. Make it obvious by creating clickable buttons or images that attract attention.
Is your blog useful to people?
Here’s the big one. Your blog NEEDS to be useful to your readers. You’re probably reading this because the title made you think “I wonder how I can make my blog better?” I’m giving you useful advice based on my experience in exchange for visits and comments and conversation about my products on social media.
If this blog was merely a salesy post aimed at pushing my online marketing training or services then none of the above would happen. People want something for themselves and the internet has allowed them to do that. Don’t ever forget that. Give people what they want and then once they trust you, they may convert. Prove yourself to ensure they will trust you. Write content that shows your knowledge, and they will buy from or refer you to others.
Still need more help with your blog…?
We’re available for hire and we’re ready to tackle the most complicated of subjects!
We’ve blogged about gadgets, beauty, ladies’ fashion, social media, business, home security, safes, bathrooms, community projects, decorating, personal development, fitness, ski wear and even vintage corsets!
We offer your first blog FREE if you buy a package of six. We’ll even upload it to your website for you!
Contact us or drop us a tweet to start blogging for your business.
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