Blogging for business is a terrific way to get content into search engines, to get found, to get read, and to get phone calls from your ideal customers. As marketing methods go it’s one of the most cost effective and is very easy to do.
When starting out blogging you will be told all kinds of things but the most important thing is that you must keep writing. No matter what anyone says, you must keep writing.
Important lesson about business blogging number one – your writing will not improve if you don’t write. The words and sentence structure do not improve whilst residing in your head. Get the words out of your head and onto paper. Listen to the critics, take on board what they say but keep writing. Do not let the well intentioned criticism of others get your down. Keep on writing.
BUT “Everyone can read everything on the internet” and if I make a writing error everyone will see it! Well, the first statement’s true enough. If you are already blogging you will know that most of the 6 billion people that populate this planet are not reading your blog. Less than 00000000.1 % may be reading your blog posts. Write what you are happy for your boss and your mother to read. If you read a post back and you know your boss will fire you and your mother would blush then I’d think twice before hitting publish.
Important lesson about blogging number two: although your blog is “out there” and “on the internet” not everyone will read it. That doesn’t mean they won’t find it if you become rich or famous, in that scenario they most definitely will find it and it will come back and bite you on the ass. Don’t sweat getting found or getting read.
Titles matter. Headlines matter. If you want to be found for “Couriers in Essex” not mentioning that phrase means it will be very hard to find you for it: search engines are not mind readers. If your headline is “10 things you can load into an Essex Courier’s van” more people will click that title compared to just “Couriers in Essex”. I know, I’ve tested it as I didn’t believe that titles mattered. Why? It’s dull, it’s boring and that’s a post that you will have lavished hours of your time on and wonder why it is not being read. Let me tell you why: Titles matter.
Important lesson about blogging number three: Mention your keywords in your sexily crafted titles. Spend time (more time) writing the headlines than the post itself. Ogilvy (some advertising maven ) said that the headline gets read 5 times more than the content. So make it a good one.
Need inspiration? Look at the local news stand; look at the newspapers in the rack. What headline jumps out and makes you want to pick up the paper and read it?
Apply the “stand out factor” to your own headlines. If in doubt write them down and pin the to the wall. See what headline jumps out at you. Numbers and statistics work well in headlines. Remember it has to be relevant to your audience to get read, careful planning means you will win the battle for attention.
No one wants to read rants all the time. If this upsets some average bloggers who have made their name ranting, I’m sorry. Your a one trick pony and no one wants to do business with someone who rants all the time. By the same token no one wants to read your never-ending stream positive but bland news of your company. Or a continuous stream of reviews… it’s boring. You need to mix your content up. Post a variety of different posts
Important lesson about blogging number four: Your readers prefer a mix. If you have a diverse content mix you will speak to potential customers at every stage of the buying cycle. Potential customers learn from you and digest your content in multiple ways. Cater for all kinds of reader – one or two of them will be your ideal customer as well. By having a varied content mix people will look forward to returning to your blog to see what you have in store for them.
Blocks of text put people off. Seriously. People don’t read huge tracts of text online. It is hard to read, the eye works thrice as hard and in the end they give up. Black background, white text is also hard to read. It might be a sexy blog design but if your readers can’t read your words you may as well not bother writing them.
Important blogging lesson number five: short sentences, short paragraphs and you are going to do a lot better than the blogger who puts their audience through huge blocks of dense text.
Write for your audience. Yes, a bonus blogging lesson. If you write for just one member of your audience your words will resonate with them, because you are talking to them directly.
You become memorable to them as you spoke directly to them.
Show that you understand their needs and have thought about all the possible solutions.
Don’t make the mistake of writing for everyone because your words won’t touch anyone.
Bonus blogging lesson: You ideal customer is your ideal reader, if your business has an ideal customer when you craft your blog posts write to that ideal customer. Get in her shoes, understand her objections and write about how to overcome them.
So there we have it, 5 business blogging lessons (plus one bonus one) that are simple, highly effective and things you are unlikely to be told when starting out. Master all of these and you will never have a problem getting the right traffic and the right leads from your business blog.
Share with us your blogging lessons, things you wished you had known prior to starting your blog.
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