If professional marketers know one thing, it’s that blogs are one of the most underrated forms of online promotion that you can include in your marketing strategy. Unfortunately, even the best writers can struggle to achieve good results from their blog content. This is because blog content doesn’t only have to sound good — it also needs to follow certain practices that make it more effective for your strategy. In this blog, we’re going to take a look at blogging best practices, how they work, and how you can get the best results out of your blogging efforts.
Don’t let your blog go to waste – it’s prime digital real estate!
Why do I need a blog in the first place?
These days, it might feel like everyone has a blog — and if that’s the case, won’t yours just get lost in the crowd? The main goal of a blog isn’t to become the best and most popular blog ever – you’ve already missed the boat on that one! Instead, a blog provides an opportunity to communicate to your audience that you’re a credible expert in your field and that you have an unrivalled level of industry-knowledge and experience. It’s also a chance to show off your brand’s unique personality and connect with your readers.
Content marketing should never be about that hard sell; good content marketing is about surrounding your audience with good feelings about who you are and what you stand for – and showing them you’re the best choice for their needs.
If you still don’t understand the need for a blog, consider how you as a reader came across this blog post and why you’re still reading it? It contains something that’s of value to you, so all you need to do is find something that’s value to your audience — and write a blog about it!
How to blog 101: Find your voice
Finding the right voice for a blog sounds easy, but it can be difficult to truly capture the right tone across a wide range of topics. As well as this, if your blog is going to have multiple contributors — it’s essential that you establish a set of guidelines to help your blog appear more cohesive. What core values make up your brand identity? In what way do you want your business to be seen? All of this must be reflected across all of your blog posts, regardless of who they’ve been written by.
As a general rule, it’s advised that blog writers avoid using a passive voice wherever possible (the sentence I just wrote is an example of the passive voice, don’t judge me!). The ‘active vs passive’ argument still divides writers to this day, but everyone agrees that speaking to the reader in a way that makes them feel part of your thought process is good practice. SEO is also more favourable towards the active voice (because it’s more readable) — a good indication of which one you should try using more.
Apply SEO and keyword techniques to your posts
Aside from the active or passive voice, what other practices should you consider when writing blogs? Well, all good content marketers will know that applying SEO techniques is something you should consider before you even start writing. After all, what’s the point of writing blog posts that might never be read?
Even during the research phase, your blog post should take keywords, shareability, and saturation of the market into account. Identify subjects that are as specific to your audience as possible, and optimise niche areas that your competitors may have missed. Long-form content also ranks well on Google, usually because of the opportunity for more backlinks — which, by the way, your blog post should also be using!
Content marketing should always be planned
Structuring the topics of your blogs in a way that tells a story about your business is an excellent way of inviting the reader in and establishing a deeper sense of trust. Allow your blogs to be topical, but always connect your content to the areas that best reflect your business’s level of expertise. Depending on what someone is looking for, blog posts will naturally be discovered by different people at different times. However, because blog content is also likely to be shared across social media platforms — it should never appear erratic.
Having a content calendar will help you map out exactly what posts should be released at what time — meaning that if you’re running a particular marketing campaign, you can use your blog content to support it. This list of popular social media calendar tools and templates should give you a better idea of how your blog posts and social media posts should work together.
Publish consistently across your online presence
Have you ever visited a blog with a lot of content and then realised that their latest post was published a few months ago? A lack of consistency on your blog sends out red flags to the reader that the information in front of them might not be relevant anymore — particularly if even the blog owner isn’t paying attention to it. If a blog owner isn’t using their blog anymore, why should a reader feel a need to engage? As soon as a potential customer starts to feel like your company isn’t keeping on top of their content, their faith in your business will decline.
Remember, blog posts that are consistent and up-to-date are more likely to be shared across social media platforms too — allowing any call-to-action in your blog to serve their purpose. To drive traffic to your website, you’ll need to get people talking… but before that, you’ll need to do some talking yourself!
To find out more about the kind of strategic practices you could be applying to your website, book a free website consultation with us now!