Writing great blog posts is not just important for customer relations but critical for search engines which find and deliver the most relevant content to a consumer keyword search query.
If your company is regularly creating customer focussed content, then the company website will have more opportunities to appear on search result pages.
In the post, Blogging Is Good For Business I covered the value of blogging — how it provides an important avenue to connect with customers; positions your brand as an industry leader; enhances search engine opportunities; and generates more traffic to your website.
The biggest hurdle – finding things to write about — was addressed with several options: from curating content from other sites and publications; pre-post /event blog posts; seasonal posts that can be tuned- up annually; addressing difficult issues with a touch of humor; and how different formats make easy writing and break down the information so that it’s easy to read.
What’s the next step in creating great blog posts? Getting the content and presentation right.
Tips to Blog by:
- Good writing sticks to the principal of one thought – one sentence. Shorter sentences are easy to read. The ideal blog post is about 350 words in length. Avoid padding articles to meet a specific word length. Not only will you end up with unnecessary words but you’re reader will know.
- Are keywords important? Always. But don’t let them become the focus of your post. Write for your reader and the company keywords will find their way into the conversation. However, it doesn’t hurt to double check that your keyword phrase appears a minimum of three times in the blog post. If not, it’s not that difficult to add them in after posting.
- Paragraphs with less than five sentences – allow the page to breathe. And if the page still looks cluttered and too grey, break your material into more paragraphs.
- Punctuate the paragraphs with bold and italics for emphasis and to break up the page.
- Bullet points and numbered lists make a great visual presentation and help organize thoughts and add emphasize. They also help your reader, who is most likely scanning the text on a mobile device.
- Including sub-heads help your presentation, and will win you more attention from search engines, as they like sub-headlines too. Search engines refer to headlines as a way of identifying blog content.
- A photo is worth a thousand words, a photo plus caption – even more. Are videos more important than photos? If you are linking from the social media platform YouTube, then you’re gaining a link – which is good news. But in terms of adding colour and content to the page, photos and videos are equally as effective.
- Maximize your post by optimizing the blog post Meta Tags and URLS web addresses, which provide search engines with vital website information. One often overlooked technique is to link older posts to newer ones. This is not only good SEO (search engine optimization), it can increase reader engagement as they dig deeper into your site.
- Add a byline. Every company blog post can benefit from a full signature with a name, contact information and a photo of the writer. It makes great business sense and it’s another connection for the reader. They can contact you right from the blog.
How often should you blog? To be effective, bi-monthly but that might not always work for some types of businesses.
It’s logical to blog most often during your busy season, but that’s usually when you have the least amount of time. It might be easier to blog during the off-season, building up content and connecting with customers via web that you spent the season seeing face-to-face. The key is not to let the blog look abandoned.
Blogging is less about writing and more about viewing it as an opportunity to generate more traffic to your website with the goal of converting visitors into regular customers.