Blogging is a great way to show your customers what’s currently trending in your industry while showcasing your brand’s personality. Writing short, informative posts on a regular basis is also beneficial from an SEO perspective because writing about topics of interest to your audience are likely to show higher results in search rankings. Finally, blogging can help generate leads and sales for your business and drive traffic to your website.
Blogging doesn’t have to be a drain on your resources and you don’t have to be stuck covering topics that at the end of the day are stale, lack luster, and frankly, boring. All you have to do is follow these five tips for better blogging:
1. Do your research—What are other business leaders and customers talking about related to your industry? Are there popular trends or new products emerging? Researching the current state of your industry’s climate can often spark creative ideas and blog content. Try looking up trending articles and posts on LinkedIn. Find LinkedIn groups related to your industry and see what conversations are happening there. Research upcoming industry conferences and see what the speakers are talking about. Or head to your favorite news or industry website (e.g. PRDaily) to peruse hot topics and current affairs. Spending about 15 minutes doing research will often yield a big payoff in terms of generating blog content ideas. Remember, don’t recycle content from other blog posts or news stories…think about a creative spin you can put on the topics you find interesting.
2. Use lists—Writing blog posts that contain a list of items (like this one) or bullet points is great to improve blog readability. According to the Baymard Insititute, “the optimal line length for your body text is considered to be 50-60 characters per line, including spaces,” so listing out your key points concisely helps improve reader focus and prevents boredom.
3. Be conversational—Although your English teacher may have never told you to write how you talk, having a professional yet conversational tone when blogging helps showcase your brand’s personality. Nobody wants to read a blog post filled with industry jargon and complicated words they have to look up in a dictionary later…So make sure you’re writing at about a 5th grade reading level in order to capture all possible audiences who may stumble upon and read your blog. Plus, you want to be conversational in order to be transparent and honest with your readers. Hiding behind business lingo isn’t good for positive brand reputation.
4. Encourage discussion—One of the main reasons for blogging is to reach your key audiences and get them talking about what is written, right? Kick off your blog post with a compelling question or interesting fact or statement related to the topic. Additionally, at the end of your blog, ask the reader a question or post a call to action (e.g. “Tell us about a time when you…”). This invites the reader to comment on the blog post and shows your brand is vested in hearing its reader’s opinions and values their thoughts.
5. Join in other conversations—Practice what you preach by kick starting a conversation by posting on another like-minded business’ blog. Pick about 5-10 similar blogs in your industry and add your two cents to the conversation with a link back to your blog. Likely, by commenting on other’s blogs first, those readers will be driven to your blog and comment as well. Doing this regularly helps build real relationships with bloggers that write about similar topics (just be careful not to step on competitor’s toes). Joining other conversations is also a great way to see what others are saying about your industry and not only gets your business blog “out there” but helps inspire creative blog topics.
What blogging tips have worked for your business? What hasn’t? Let us know @OrapinMarketing. If your business is looking to improve its blogging strategy, we would love to help! Reach out at email@example.com or call 303.630.9527.
Author: Angela Shugarts, PR Strategist for Orapin Marketing + Public Relations | @angelashugarts
Rhiannon Hendrickson is the founder and CEO of Orapin Marketing + Public Relations, which helps purpose-driven businesses increase visibility, expand the reach of their message, and become sought-after industry leaders. She has worked with organizations of all sizes across myriad sectors to develop memorable and effective communications programs that generate awareness, engagement, and, ultimately, support for those that are making a meaningful impact.