Today’s consumer has some intriguing buying behaviors. With 70% wanting to learn about a product or service through blogs rather than ads, 57% of consumers make their purchase decision before they ever reach out to the business. (Corporate Executive Board) With 329 million people reading blogs, it’s a given—blogging rules!
A great small business tip to remember is that blogging is an effective tool for driving traffic to your website, generating leads, and acquiring new clients. Plus, it’s an impressive means for any business to be found in a crowded marketplace. Blogging, however, does require resources—including a powerful strategy—to produce the results you’re after.
A dynamic blogging initiative starts with a solid blogging strategy consisting of these key points:
1. What is your desired outcome? Hubspot, my favorite marketing software, tells us “customers who write just three to four blog posts per month get 20 more monthly lead submissions, 800 more monthly site visits, 60 more Twitter followers, and 50 more Facebook likes than customers who only write two blog posts per month.” I’ll take those numbers! Don’t blog for the sake of blogging. Be intentional with a clear purpose and goal for your blog.
2. Who is your reader? If you’ve created a buyer persona for your business, you already know the answer to this question. A buyer persona informs you of the topics most likely to attract your potential clients. After all, isn’t that who you want to reach? A clearly defined buyer persona dramatically improves your blogging payoff.
3. What keywords are you targeting? With Google receiving over four million search queries per minute, ensure your blog is found at the top of the informational heap with keywords and phrases relevant to your business’ product or service…and those most commonly used by your buyer persona.
4. What resources are needed? In addition to a blogging platform, three things that every content delivery system needs to succeed are time, talent, and tools. Understand what’s required to deliver on your objective and have these assets at your disposal.
5. How often can you commit to blogging? Your intended outcome and available resources determine the frequency of your blogging commitment. Keep in mind that companies who increase blogging from three to five times per month to six to eight times per month double their leads. Be sure blogging occurs at the rate needed to reach your goals. Just sayin’…
6. Where will you blog be distributed? If you blog, will they come? Not without a plan for where, when, and how often to distribute your content to various platforms. Think beyond social media to consider industry-related sites willing to republish or syndicate your blog articles. And, when sharing content, focus on what is working rather than spread your resources thinly and dilute your efforts…and results.
7. What metrics will you track? Metrics matter when it comes to getting results from blogging. Without measuring the outcomes of your efforts—and using the data to improve your results—what’s the point? Based on your intended outcome, decide what is most important to measure, track, and analyze.
When it comes to blogging, make sure you have a blogging strategy in place that gives you confidence, clarity, and focus to achieve the outcome you’re after. Don’t just blog…blog for results.
Jackie Nagel is a guest author and founder of Synnovatia. She specializes in working with small business owners and entrepreneurs to develop strategic solutions to improve business performance and accelerate business growth.