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Step by Step Guide to Blogging

According to Hubspot, companies that blog have 55% more visitors than those who don’t, B2C companies who blog see an 88% increase in leads and B2B companies a 67% increase in leads; the business that doesn’t blog could be missing out on a game-changing online presence.

Blogging for business is a process, like any content marketing strategy: simply firing out an eloquent product feature or press release won’t drive traffic to your website.

As a leading digital marketing agency, Intergage knows blogging, so follow our steps to make blog writing work to your benefit.

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May138Pick your platform

  • WordPress and Blogger have emerged as the two most popular blogging platforms.
  • Blogger is simple to use, but functionality is limited and the templates aren’t as SEO friendly as WordPress, which isn’t ideal if you’re looking to make the first page.
  • WordPress.com is free and easy to use, but the features are limited, the templates are basic and it doesn’t support plugins.
  • WordPress.org users can pay for bespoke blog design but will need a little HTML/CSS knowledge in order to edit the templates (Intergage provides support for this) – it is highly customisable, SEO friendly, supports plug ins, and free to use!

Find out what’s hot right now

  • Use Google Trends to see how much people are searching for a brand, product or service and compare this to competitors.
  • Use Google Keywords to find keywords that your target audience are searching for which rank organically higher in searches. You can then include these in posts for better visibility.

Make your presence known

  • Your brand and its message will determine your blog’s design, content and even the tone of voice that you blog in; these facets must reflect the core of your business in order to establish an authentic and authoritative online presence.
  • Ensure you blog at least once a week (an editorial calendar is useful for scheduling), identify and solve your customers’ problems in posts and feature customers as well as products to encourage loyalty.
  • Make sure your Google+ profile ‘Links’ section is up to date with any other blogs that you contribute to: readers will be led to your own blog when they find your other posts. To find out more about authorship mark up please visit Keira’s blog post.

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Let me entertain you

  • Excellent content is key to getting the reader’s attention: be funny, informative and original and people will listen to what you have to say.
  • Use interesting and demonstrative imagery and video to make your content more engaging for the reader.
  • Be careful not to use too many links – 1 link per 100 words is the recommended amount – and direct them to a simple call to action such as a single link, form, or comment section.

Listen

  • Allow your audience to react and comment on your blogs and make sure you respond to them: reply to their comments or create a completely new post with a response or solution.
  • Read other blogs – they can be invaluable for analysing the market and even promoting your own blog.
  • Get an RSS feed to subscribe to blogs and ‘listen’ to the content that is relevant and useful to you; use websites such as Socialmention.com can help you track down blogs with similar content.
  • Leave constructive, insightful comments on other blogs and make sure that you utilisepingbacks/trackbacks:  these are links in blog posts which refer the reader to another blog post; they appear as comments, usually in excerpt form, on the blog post that was being referred t0 and will drive some of their traffic to your website.

Publicise, publicise, publicise!

  • Social media is a great starting point for the publishing stage of content marketing: create cross-promotion between your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and Pinterest accounts to reach the widest possible audience. Make sure the content is engaging, but publish it sparingly: nobody likes spam.
  • Use social media management tools like Hootsuite and automatic posting apps like RSS Graffiti to make cross-promotion simpler – they allow you to schedule your future tweets and Facebook posts for automatic publication.
  • Guest writing for other blogs can be beneficial for SEO in the long run: through posting on other blogs you can establish yourself as an expert in your field; clients will be drawn to your own business through links that are attributed to your name.

Analyse this

  • Focus your content marketing strategy for a fixed period (try 6 weeks), so that you have a reasonable range of activity to analyse.
  • Then, use Google Analytics to measure the results of your marketing strategy. Google Analytics can help you learn:

 

  • the type of visitors to your page through sources of leads
  • what keywords are taking visitors to your page, which will consequently show you the style of blog that attracts your audience
  • how many shares you receive through social media
  • how much referral traffic the blog is sending to your websit

 

  • By analysing the results of your marketing efforts you can maximise your efficiency and improve your understanding of the market: if your strategy isn’t working, change it, then analyse again.

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If you follow these steps to blogging for business, ensuring that you keep your brand and customer in mind and regularly reassess your strategy, your blog could become your most invaluable inbound marketing tool.

For more information about blogging, have a look at our blogging training course or  contact us on 0845 456 1022.

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