As of 2018, 6.7 million internet users host active blogs. If a number that high makes you think you’d be better off leaving blogging out of your marketing strategy, know that there’s a 434% chance of your website ranking higher on search engines if you feature one.
There are many ways a blog can be beneficial to your business. Despite the obvious hype for video content, 81% of people will still trust a blog—after all, it’s the most efficient method for providing customers with valuable information.
Through a blog, you can also build trust and credibility, develop strong relationships with your buyers, and differentiate yourself from your competitors.
Here’s how to best incorporate it into your marketing efforts.
Devote A Portion of Your Marketing Strategy to Research
Contrary to popular belief, after working a blog into your budget, “jump right in” isn’t an intelligent first step. You’ll first want to get to know your readers, who they are, and what they need. Creating a buyer persona is an important component to any marketing strategy, because you won’t keep yourself guessing.
Study other blogs—especially the popular ones. What types of articles garner the most likes, shares, and engagement?
Dissect visitor feedback and what keeps them hooked. The median average time spent reading an article is only 37 seconds, so you’ll want to know how to keep users scrolling.
More importantly, find your niche, then angle your content to give it a little mass appeal. Take a look at TechCrunch: while they’re clearly a tech community, their blog caters to interests such as the new iPhone 11 release, and its performance in venues like Disneyland. There’s a little something for everyone, which is great for attracting a readership and building engagement.
Write for a market varied enough to generate a good amount of attention, but also one that is focused enough to reward your target market.
Incorporate Measurable Goals Into Your Marketing Strategy
For many a blogger, numbers aren’t all that exciting. They are, however, necessary, especially when setting goals for a business. Consider putting together a one-year plan, which includes checkpoints for re-evaluation.
Say that your main goal is to increase brand awareness. Metrics you’ll want to take note of are reach and engagement. For a blog, in particular, establishing a time frame for these goals make them easier to improve on, if need be.
Other key metrics you’ll want to touch upon are website traffic and sales, which easily indicate how well your campaigns are performing. There are an abundance of online resources like Clicktools, which offer behavioral analysis and optimization tools.
Keeping your objectives measurable makes it easier to zero in on where your blog might need refinement, whether by means of content or design.
Dedicate Time to Brainstorming Your Marketing Strategy
More often than not, visitors who end up on your webpages are looking to seek out your products or services. That being said, it’s also safe to assume that they might not be interested in content you are passionate about.
Some, for instance, may be more privy to more interactive resources as opposed to a simple listicle. In fact, 53% of content marketers are already integrating interactive methods into their marketing strategy.
Mind map what type of content will be most relevant to your audience. Create actionable content that provides your readers with key lessons or practices that they can apply. Anything from tips, how-to’s, and even troubleshooting are considered actionable.
Home design business Vintage Revivals provides excellent actionable content, what with its blog consisting primarily of activities easily achievable at home.
Alternatively, you can set up an advice column or Q&A. While you certainly don’t have to be an expert blogger, knowing your industry is a must.
Finally, ensure that your message is clear. Know your business’ purpose and how best to communicate it with others.
Make Your Blog’s Own Marketing Strategy Engaging
Your blog’s success depends on the quality of the content it houses—long word counts alone won’t cut it! Find ways to convey knowledge in an enticing manner by staying on top of the trends that matter to your readers. This can be as simple as following trending hashtags on Twitter, or installing a news aggregator like Feedly.
Package technical ideas with a conversational flow. This is easy when you figure out the right voice for your blog, and narrow down the experience you want for your readers.
Additionally, slipping media into your articles can make all the difference when it comes to gathering a local following. Readers appreciate a visual break every few hundred words, which is why around 71% of bloggers make it a point to incorporate photography into their marketing strategies.
Be sympathetic with your customer: let your audience know you care, and they’ll feel compelled to relate with you in kind. Being relatable helps build a sense of community, and subsequently, returning visitors. Inform readers when they can expect to hear from you, and keep them in-the-know regarding upcoming content outside of your blog (ex. on your brand’s social media pages).
Most importantly, allow your blog to undergo maintenance every now and then. Regularly update static pages and forums using what you’ve learned by interacting with your readers. Blogs pay off best when you keep their content adaptable—and your articles rank better when you keep them fresh and updated.
Use Your Marketing Strategy to Network
Perhaps social media’s most in-demand metric, engagement is an aspect of blogging you don’t want to overlook. A great way to stay connected is by networking.
Branch out by connecting with blogs similar to your own. Collaborate with their authors, or create guest posts on their websites that link back to yours.
Networking will also keep you informed. If you’re part of a blog sphere unique to your industry, staying on-trend becomes simpler than ever. Tap smaller-scale bloggers who might want to write for your business. Ultimately, writing is the most commonly outsourced content marketing activity.
On the whole, blogging is an extension of your business that serves a multitude of purposes. It makes it easier for leads to find your business, fall into your sales funnel, and seek answers to their most important questions.
Blogging is a cost-effective advertising alternative: You beat your potential customers to the punch by introducing yourself, as opposed to being asked, what exactly is it that you do?
A blog is an excellent brand-building instrument, and one that you’ll want to budget time for.
Need a hand with your own marketing strategy? Visit the Marketing Agency Network to find the perfect agency that suits your needs.