Blogs are a great thing, they really are. Your blog positions you as an expert in your field and your business as a resource for potential and existing clients. Your blog has behind-the-scenes power as well! Blogs are great for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which is the lifeblood of your website, especially if your website is new. If you are working with a marketing agency on your blog you might find their ideas for topics a little off-center, particularly if you think that center should be your business.
Blog topics and blog goals are very different animals, you will find that a strong blogging strategy has more to do with what people want to read about as opposed to what you might want them to be reading about, i.e. your business. Today’s consumers are super savvy when it comes to advertisements that are presented as blogs and if you lead with me, me, me rather than finding a way to help the reader, you will lose them quickly. Strategy including demographics, popular topics, keywords, location specific information and timely interaction with breaking news are all things to consider when choosing what tone you want for your blog.
Why Isn’t My Blog All About My Business? Aren’t I Trying to Sell My Services?
Absolutely you are trying to sell your services or products to potential clients. Your blog can certainly assist with this endeavor, but should not be the selling piece. Your website is already all about your business. When you built your website, there is a good chance that you already put in an “about us” section somewhere and your product or services should be outlined with all the detail needed for a client or customer to make an informed decision. Why create a blog that has the same information listed elsewhere on the site? This only leads to negative SEO impact and likely will only capture people who are already specifically looking for you already. Those people will find you whether you have a blog or not.
Your blog should attract NEW clients and customers to your business. New clients don’t even know they need you yet and they won’t find you if you’re just writing about your services, how you got started or how many products you offer. When your only keyword is your business, there is a major problem, unless you are a brand like Nike, Yeti or one of the other instantly recognizable names in the consumer market today. Attracting new clients takes skill and a blog that will bring them to your website when they would probably not have landed there otherwise. Pro Tip: Make sure once you’ve written your blog, you promote it on any and all platforms available to you.
What AM I Supposed to Write About then?
Your blog is an information source, not a sales source. People don’t actively seek out advertising unless it’s on a coupon site. You don’t want your blog to become one big advertisement or people will not only NOT seek it out, but they may actively avoid it. However, if you work to figure out who your ideal client is and what that client will likely look for online, then you’re on the right track. This isn’t to say that your topic should be from the wild blue yonder. It should still fall in the realm of topics that relate to your business.
Here is a peek into the method behind our digital marketing blog writer madness:
Salon Owners have it hard. Theirs is a saturated, highly competitive market and everyone is writing about hair! To garner attention writing about hair is tricky. Appealing to people with specific types of hair is one way to tackle the issue, especially if a service is offered in one salon that is not widely available. Even better would be to target that service to a specific area, like the community in which the salon is located. New trends are always being written about when it comes to hair, particularly regarding celebrities when they make a dramatic change.
So, the ideal blog for this client would culminate around a celebrity getting a hair treatment that is a special service at this particular salon. This blog topic would look something like: “How the Hot Hairdy Hair Hair Trend Came to Be” (topical and not salesy) with a tie-in to how the salon can help recreate the style for the reader and a couple of specially placed relevant links to other parts of the website (services page and contact page). It worked for one of our clients, increasing their website traffic, particularly to the blog and scheduling page, significantly. The business enjoyed the highest rate of new clients the month the blog was published over any time in the previous seven years.
Is It Ever Okay to Promote Services and Products in My Blog?
It is okay to write directly about services or products, but in a way that interests others, not in a way that they feel they are reading an advertisement. DO make sure to tie in your blog with your business, even if it is just to close with a link to your contact page. This is especially true if you are only writing one blog a month. With two or more, you might be able to introduce a product in one blog, talking about why you love it along with stories about how it has been used successfully and then use the second blog to explore a topic or keyword that is trending in your industry. Writing a blog about your business is acceptable when introducing yourself on a new website and then only if you’re saying something that is new or more in-depth than what is on your about page, but this is a one-time event.
As you embark upon your blog writing journey, remember the three E’s: Education, Entertainment, Engagement. Listen to out of the box ideas and consider the broader impact of capturing your audience’s attention first, their business later. If you are stuck on where to start or just don’t have the time to add blogging to your list of to-dos get in touch so we can work our blog-writing magic for you today!
My philosophy is more than just words or data, it is finding a way to marry content and SEO strategy with dynamic advertising to build online equity in our clients’ businesses. Writing is my passion, using it to help others is my pleasure and part of my mission at Hot Dog Marketing.