Simply, a blog is an online journal where the entries are published on a website, with the most recent first. Blogging is now an important part of managing your online brand presence and offers fantastic opportunities for your business.
With millions of blogs in cyberspace today, this new method of communicating has even changed the publishing world. Blogging has transformed the once-static website into a continually evolving, dynamic platform where business owners can publish appealing content at the click of a button.
If you blog for business, you should blog with results that you can measure. Blogs tend to be written in a personal, conversational style. It is important to focus on quality not quantity, with quick and interesting content, conveyed over a few paragraphs.
Where to Begin?
First of all, you are going to want your blog to stand out in the blogosphere. Ensure that your title sparks an interest with the reader. Engage them with the first few words.
Titles that offer a solution to a need will also offer a high click-rate. What titles resound with your audience? What issues are they facing in their personal or working lives?
Secondly, you will need to optimise your copy for the search engines. Your title and content must be combined with strategic key words that affirm the topic of your blog. Catchy-keyword content will ensure click-through rates and Google indexing.
If you are new to blogging, take a look at what is out there right now to inspire you. The easiest way to read blogs is to subscribe to ones you find interesting using Google Reader or Newsgator newsreader services. A newsreader is a website or piece of software where you can go to read a newsfeed that you are subscribed to via RSS. All blogs and most news websites have RSS feeds attached to them.
You can find blogs on topics that you’re interested in by using Google and exploring the networks of blogs. If you find a blog which is particularly interesting or relevant to you, have a look for its ‘blog roll’ (recommended blogs for you to read based upon the subject).
Now to the body of your post. This is crucial to the blog’s overall success. Ask yourself, ‘how am I adding value with this piece of writing?’ You have hooked your audience in with your catchy headline, but can you live up to the promise?
Do not ramble on; get the point out quickly, and in an appealing, conversational style, to keep them engrossed. If you need to, use sub headings and bullet points. Make sure that the blog is presented in a simple and easy to read format.
If you are a professional or representing a business, it is important for you to maintain a blog, sharing your valued information and positioning yourself as a specialist in your field. Blogging will allow you to communicate in a less formal style than has been traditional in newsletters, brochures and press releases, which can help to give a human face and voice to the organisation. If you are in business, a blog can become a very effective way of building a network of like-minded individuals and raising your online profile.
You may decide to include images or videos within your blog. If you plan to create these yourself then ensure they are relevant to the blog, offer an added value and are created in a professional format, consistent with your brand image and online positioning.
There are many viewers out there who now prefer to watch videos to discover new information, rather than reading lengthy articles, and through creating strategic videos, you will be taking your brand to the next level online.
If you blog with large audiences then the debates in certain sections can run to hundreds of comments at a time. If blogging for business, ensure you manage your brand’s reputation in these instances, always swaying the conversation to ways that will enhance and benefit your business online.
If you do not have one, set up a Facebook page and begin to interact with the people who comment and show an interest in what you are writing about. Create a buzz, draw in a wider audience and get your wise words out there for people to see.
Another great way to get lots of blogging exposure and large amounts of targeted traffic to your website is guest blogging. This is a very important part of your business blogging strategy.
Through guest blogging you can attach relevant links to the end of your blogs back to your site, whilst speaking to new and untapped audiences. This will raise awareness of your brand and online business profile, as well as various individuals in your organisation.
Approach the bloggers that you wish to write for, and try to develop relationships with them. You may choose to do this by commenting on their blogs or via directly contacting them via a personal email explaining why you wish to blog for them, ensuring you compliment their writing styles and range of interesting content. If you have already commented on their blog for while then they will recognise your name and in a good light, which is a great starting point.
Trackbacks are an excellent way of letting another blogger know that you have linked to their blog. Linking to other blogs is a very powerful traffic strategy and will ensure you get links back to your blog, increasing traffic and exposure of your individual profile and brand (if blogging for business).
Notify another author that you have linked with one of their articles via an automated process. Whenever you link to an article on another blog, WordPress will automatically “ping” the other blog, alerting them to the incoming link.
One of the most powerful blogging techniques for building traffic to your site is through commenting on other people’s blogs. This will bring lots of exposure your way whilst building positive relationships with other bloggers. Relationship building can lead to guest blogging opportunities, interview requests, powerful back-links, and much more.
To receive the most traffic make sure you are one of the first people to comment to get the best exposure on the comment feed, always being at the top of the page. This comment will need to be of real value that compliments the blog, offering insightful information that draws real interest towards you. If you continue to do this on many high profile blogs then this will give your online profile massive exposure.
Promote your Blog Via Facebook!
Facebook is one of the most powerful tools in your online marketing strategy. This can massively increase your exposure and drive traffic to your site. Facebook allows you to interact with your specific community in a unique social medium.
To begin, create a Facebook Fan Page. Your Facebook profile allows your readers to connect with each other on a one-to-one level, which is not possible on your blog or even inside your blog comments. Facebook enables you to offer a honest and authentic way of communicating, building trust and deeper relationships.
Start Blogging Today!
Ensure you have the powerful tool of business blogging to engage and enlighten your audience. Consider the points above and make sure you keep up to date with the ever evolving blogging world. Social media and internet marketing is constantly moving, and in order to stay ahead of the competition you must stay informed and involved!
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