So you want to build a blog? Well, you’ve got heavy competition. As of 2020, there over 500 million blogs, with authors posting two million new posts each day.
Are you intimidated? Don’t be!
While there are numerous blogs for readers to choose from, only a handful of blogs are worthwhile. If you follow the right steps, you can generate high-quality content that reaches millions of readers.
To create a successful corporate blog, you must know blog best practices. We’ve compiled ten ways you can maximize your blog’s power and blow away the competition.
1. Quantity Over Quality
When content marketing first became popular, marketers believed the more blogs produced, the better. This type of thinking has changed in the last few years. Marketers discovered that as companies produced more blogs, the quality of the articles decreased.
HubSpot research determined that writing more blog posts only boost website visitors if the quality of the blogs also remains high. Content marketers today recommend producing fewer blogs, with high-quality content.
It’s okay to spend hours gathering research, interviewing experts, and analyzing data if it means producing an exceptional blog. When a blog produces high-quality content, readers are more likely to enjoy the article and share it with others.
2. Create a Realistic Content Calendar
Successful blog management is not an easy task. If your blog grows enough, managing all of its content can be a full-time job. If you’re overwhelmed, create a content calendar.
Content calendars answer the question of how to plan your blog. Content calendars organize content and help marketers plan out blog posts. Content calendars should be prepared at least one month ahead of time. The calendar can be as complex or as simple as your blog requires.
Content calendars help blog managers:
- Stay organized
- Post consistently
- Track successful posts
- Assign writers to each post
- List channels the content will be published on
- Align blog posts with industry-related events and holidays to increase traffic
Content calendars prevent bloggers from just winging it. They provide stability by strategically organizing content week by week.
3. Write Like an Expert, Not a Salesman
The purpose behind most blogs is to make money. Whether that be through increased traffic or generating interest in a particular product, it’s essential to establish a clear voice in your blog posts. But don’t try to sell to your readers.
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Successful blogs engage readers instead of selling to them. Use your product or industry knowledge to inform and engage readers.
Content isn’t a sales tactic. Content is designed to educate customers and help them move throughout the sales funnel. The more customers engage with your blog and website, the more familiar they will become with your brand. Once consumers feel comfortable, you can begin your sales pitch.
It’s necessary to understand your audience when establishing your blog’s voice. Is your target market completely clueless, and the information must be as simple as possible? Or are you writing for professionals, in which you don’t have to take time to explain industry lingo?
If you answer questions and present interesting information, your blog will grow. As your blog grows, so will your sales. That’s why content marketing generates three times as many leads as compared to traditional marketing methods.
4. Answer Questions for Your Target Market
Writing a blog should be formatted as a Q&A. Your blog topics should derive from questions your target audience has regarding your product or industry. Your content must deliver clear and informative answers.
To generate content, list common questions you’ve encountered from your clientele. These are what people commonly search in Google.
Keep in mind that your target market doesn’t just want their question answered. They want their question answered well.
When you answer the question, don’t be afraid to go in-depth. Use your expert knowledge to explain your answer. Add statistics and references to expand upon your points.
5. Establish a Clear Objective
Organization is key when it comes to successful blog management. You must set a clear objective for your blog.
What are you trying to accomplish with your blog? Different blogs have various objectives, all with the end goal of growing a business. Common blog objectives include:
- Increasing social media presence (followers, likes, engagement)
- Boosting SEO rank
- Improving website traffic
- Generating an email list
- Raising brand awareness
Clearly defining your blog’s objective allows you to stay on-task throughout your campaign. Every blog post should be aimed at reaching your goal. If you stay on track, you have a better chance of reaching your target ROI.
6. Use Keywords
Research is a key step in best practices for blogging. Aside from investigating your blog topic, you need to consider how people will find your blog. That’s where keyword research comes in.
Keywords are what people type into a search engine. Bloggers include keywords to increase their SEO. The better your blog’s SEO, the more people your blog will reach.
There are plenty of helpful (and free) tools bloggers can use when conducting keyword research. Google Ads offers an excellent one. It’s designed for generating Google Ads, but users can take advantage of the tool for blogging and web copy purposes.
Once you have established your keyword, you must strategically use the keyword, or keyword phrases, throughout your writing. Include the keyword in your title, meta description, and at least one header.
Throughout your blog, plug in the keyword where it fits. Use your keyword organically. Google can detect when keywords are forced into writing (also known as keyword stuffing). Keyword stuffing hurts your SEO.
7. Don’t Ramble
Each blog post should focus on a few key areas. Be specific and don’t write for the entire industry. Above all, get to your point quickly.
When writing a blog, keep the 15-second rule in mind. According to marketing experts, 55% of visitors spend 15 seconds or less on a website.
What does that mean for bloggers? Capture your audience quickly. Write in a way that engages your audience fast. Put your important information at the beginning of your blog.
Blogging can be tricky in that the writer must quickly cover the topic at hand. That’s why it’s vital to monitor the length of your blog posts.
New blogs should stay within 500 to 1,000 words. Older blogs with an established following and higher engagement rates can be 2,000 words.
8. Add Internal and External Links
Blogging best practices include incorporating links to boost SEO. Google uses links to determine what content on your site is related to a search. Internal and external links should be used when blogging.
External links direct users to another website. These links should be reputable sources that support your statements. Blogs should link to statistics, news articles, and industry experts.
Never use an external link within the same tab. That will direct traffic away from your site. External links must open in a new tab, so your users don’t stray from your site.
Internal links direct users to relevant pages within your site. Link to similar blogs or case studies to further prove your point. At the end of your blog, you can include a Call-to-Action that sends users to a contact or product page.
9. Promote Your Blog
What is the point of crafting a well-written blog if you’re not going to promote it? Use your influence to send the blog out to followers, customers, and other relevant readers.
If you’re running a corporate blog, your posts need to be sent out through your brand’s social media account. Facebook and Twitter are great social media platforms to generate awareness on your blog. If your blog develops a following, you may notice your social media following grow as well.
Instagram can be used to push out blog posts, but you’ll need to be careful about how you link to the blog. You cannot directly link to websites in an Instagram post (yet). Instead, influencers and companies use third-party tools like LinkTree to send followers to their blogs.
10. Measure ROI
Finally, as you continue producing top-notch content, collect data to measure your ROI.
Establish clear goals of your blog and determine how to measure your success. Set a reasonable timeframe to accomplish your goal. Consider blog expenses, such as labor and blogging tools. Gather data along the way to benchmark your progress.
Keep in mind it can take six to twelve months to gain a positive ROI from content marketing.
At the end of your campaign, measure your results. Determine what areas need improvement and make adjustments. The more you track and analyze your blog’s metrics, the better chance you have of boosting ROI.
Keep up With Blog Best Practices
If you’re going to put the time into developing a blog, you need to do it right. Follow blog best practices to ensure your blog becomes a huge success.
From measuring data to using the right keywords to following your content calendar, producing a high-yielding blog is a lot of work. But if you adhere to these steps, you’ll be sure to create an informative, engaging, and SEO-friendly blog for your brand.