13 Steps to Turn Your Business Blog Into an Effective Content Marketing Tool

Is Your Business Blog A Yawn?
How to Avoid Boring Business Blog Syndrome

Boring business blogs are a yawn Most business blogs are boring. Lacking any sign of vitality, their posts are filled with corporate speak and promotions that no prospect would waste their time reading. As a result, many business executives consider blogs a cost of doing business that doesn’t generate revenue.

If this sounds like your organization’s blog, help is here in the form of thirteen targeted tactics to instill your blog content with life and prospect engagement. 

  1. Know your audience. Understand who’s reading your company blog (other than your boss.) It’s harder to write for an amorphous, undefined public than it is to write for a colleague or others that you know. To that end, create well defined marketing persona.
  2. Focus on a few core topics. To build an audience, it’s important that your blog show consistency. One way to accomplish this is to write about your core topics. Build your following by concentrating your content on a couple of categories. Otherwise, it appears as if your blog has no focus.
  3. Tell stories. People remember stories not a pile of facts. Think about how you can convert your organization’s information into an easy-to-remember story all of your prospects can remember. (Here’s 29 ways to find the stories with your organization.)
  4. Skip the lifeless corporate speak. Like other forms of social media, blogs require a human voice. The content needs to sound like a real person wrote the posts.
  5. Get active. One way to breathe life into your blog posts is to use the active voice rather than the passive voice. Generally, it’s shorter way to convey your ideas.
  6. Focus attention with images. Include at least one image, preferably a photograph, in each post.
  7. Offer format variety. When words fail to get your point across, use other formats such as photographs, videos and presentations.
  8. Put your writers in the spotlight. Create short bios with photographs for each of your authors. This subtly makes your blog more human.
  9. Craft post headlines with care. Your post headlines must pull readers into the content. Even more important, they have to work on social media platforms, especially Twitter. Don’t just slap something on because you’re finished and don’t want to spend any more time on the assignment.
  10. Optimize blog content for search. Since blogs help improve search optimization, maximize your effectiveness by using appropriate blog plugins, focusing each post on a specific keyword phrase, and adding text to non-text media. (Here’s 15  SEO tips for bloggers from experts.)
  11. Include links to relevant product. Part of the value of using a business blog is to provide contextually relevant information. To this end, incorporate links to specific product in your blog posts. Link to specific product pages.
  12. Eliminate promotions. If your blog posts just exists as another publishing platform to distribute your sales and advertising, no one’s going to pay attention, even when you say something useful or interesting.
  13. Engage with readers. Show that your firm is an active member of the social media community by responding to each blog comment.

To avoid bland business blog syndrome, stop slapping up recycled content. Focus your blog on topics of interest to your prospects and customers to get them engaged in reading and sharing your content.

What other recommendations would you add to this list to help your business or a client revive their blog?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen

Here are some related articles about content marketing and blogging for business:

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/smanography/2366162104/

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