Having a company blog is a great way to establish your reputation as a leader within your particular industry. Your blog provides a way to distribute keyword rich content that can drive more visitor traffic and lead to higher search engine rankings for your corporate Web site. According to a recent MarketSherpa B2B Marketing Benchmark Report, 70% of B2B businesses surveyed said they had a company blog. Starting your company blog and finding sources for that content, however, can be a daunting task.
Establish Firm Goals for Your Company Blog
One of the first steps you need to take is establishing some concrete goals for your blog. You can use your blog to:
- Share information about your company, its products and services
- Provide information about news and trends within your given industry
- Share tips and “how-to” information in the form of articles or videos
- Create an interactive relationship with customers and prospects
These activities will build trust with your customers and potential customers and can go a long way toward establishing your business as an expert in your field and can enhance your SEO efforts.
Target Your Blog to Specific Customers and Keywords
Who is your target audience? Narrowing your audience will limit its reach but will increase the likelihood that visitors will bookmark or subscribe to it.
You should also determine the specific keywords and keyword phrases you intend to pursue. Your approach to keywords can either be to support or supplement your existing SEO efforts. If you have already determined your most effective keywords, your blog can be used to broaden your reach for those keywords. On the other hand, some companies use their blogs to drive traffic for so-called secondary or “long tail” keywords. These are generally more specific, highly qualified keyword phrases which tend to deliver lower traffic volumes. However, they also tend to have higher conversion rates associated with them. Whichever approach you take, be sure to incorporate your keywords in articles and videos you post to your blog.
Consistency is Key to the Success of Your Company Blog
Once you’ve established some goals and targeted your audience and keywords, it’s important to set a schedule for posting to your blog. Sporadic efforts can frustrate subscribers who will eventually abandon your blog unless you provide reasons for them to return. The same is true of search engines. Even though a viral video or highly popular article may drive a tremendous amount of traffic, the effects will be short lived unless you deliver value to your customers on an ongoing basis. Maintaining your blog should be a regularly scheduled activity.
Make Your Company Blog a Team Effort
Instead of taking on sole responsibility for updating your blog yourself, you should make your blog a collaborative effort. Having multiple people involved in content creation has a number of benefits. Distributing the responsibility for your company blog among numerous participants lessens the burden on any one contributor and the inherent diversity of such an approach increases the likelihood that your visitors will find something of value.
Develop a Writing Guide for Blog Contributors
Keep in mind that your blog is a form of corporate communication and all posts need to demonstrate the high standards of your business and support its image as an industry expert. Make sure your writers adhere to specific guidelines concerning subject matter, tone and keyword use. You should also establish a target length for blog posts. Typically, posts should be between 350 – 500 words in length.
Be Sure to Review and Edit
It’s always a good idea to have a second set of eyes review all posts before publishing them. Editing can be the sole responsibility of a single team member or can be shared by all members of your blog team. Editors should pay particular attention to the basics, including spelling, grammar and the overall structure of posts. They should also focus on ensuring that posts are clear and concise. Editors can also be tasked with assigning tags, writing meta titles and descriptions, checking for adequate keyword density and selecting relevant images to be included in posts.
Track Your Results Over Time
As with any marketing effort, your company blog will likely take time to deliver results and those results will require effort to measure. Most experts agree that between three and six months is a fair amount of time to give your blog before deciding to modify your strategy or abandon the effort altogether. There are a number of free analytics tools available to help you track visitor behavior, click through rates and conversions. Most blogging platforms provide some level of analytics capabilities and these can be augmented with more sophisticated tools like Google Analytics and Clicky Web Analytics.