When building your brand online, it’s all about great content that engages potential and existing customers to keep your brand top of mind. Blogging has become very common, and there’s so much noise online. People are being bombarded with content and images on all their devices making it more challenging than ever to drive traffic to your website.
Today I’m releasing Part II of my Blogging for Small Business series. Today we’ll address how to promote a blog. In Part I, we focused on how to create a content strategy. If you want to drive visitors to your blog, as well as get them to come back again and again for more great content, you need a plan.
Below are a few strategies that will help you tell the world you are ready to help.
Have a Content Promotion Plan
If you simply publish a blog post and then wait around for people to find it online, you’ll not be happy with the results. Whatever your style of content, it’s only going to be successful if it’s promoted. Use social media to get your brand out there and get people talking about it. Extend your reach by mentioning and linking to others who are influential in your field, and ask them to do the same for you.
You can schedule shares of every new post on your blog through sharing tools like SproutSocial, to share your newest posts on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Youtube, and Twitter. Vary the wording with the blog link and changing the artwork to pique interest will maximize the number of people who click to read the post too.
Join the conversation on other industry blogs and social media posts to increase your audience. Mention relevant information in previous articles and link to them when creating new pieces. Send email newsletters to highlight informative pieces you know your customers will be interested in. Take a little time to get your content promotion strategy together, build your brand with strong content, and be ready to follow through with top quality service.
Have a Unique Point of View
There are so many blogs out there is that it’s difficult to cover anything new. Most topics have been written to death, so you are going to need to share something outside of the box to keep people’s interest. Share actionable advice. Don’t be afraid to be a contrarian to other industry experts typically say. Read tons of content so that you can find ideas and wholes in what others are covering. Always ask yourself: “How can you provide something my audience really needs?”
Vary Your Content
Most blog posts are 500-800 words, and those serve their purpose, but you may attract more blog readers if you mix up what you post. Occasionally, create an infographic, post a video, or write a longer post of 1,000 to 1500 words to really cover a topic in-depth. You can also interview people, do a book review, or write a tutorial for your product to differentiate the types of content you share. Because people all consume information differently, when you vary your blog content, you’ll appeal to a wider audience. Check your google analytics to see which posts are attracting the most traffic, and include similar content in future posts.
Write a Roundup of Article
One of my favorite ways to generate content is to ask for feedback from my readers. Put a question out on social media and ask people to respond and send a picture and link to their website. When you post the 10 best answers, give your fans a shout out with their picture and a like to promote their business. Believe me, they will share it everywhere.
You can also interview experts in your industry to attract more traffic to your blog. Every Wednesday, I host #Smallbizchat on Twitter, and every Thursday, I post the QA from the interview on my blog. People are happy to be featured in an article with a link back to their websites. This is a fabulous way to boost your blog readership and highlight others which is key to success on social media.
Use High-Quality Images
Photos attract people to your blogs, and when you share a post on social media, the image will stop people as they’re scrolling through their newsfeed, so it’s important to choose high-quality images for each post. You’ll need to find an image that best illustrates your content to draw people in. There are lots of sites where you can find free photos. Some of my favorite places to find free images online are listed below
- Negative Space
- Death to Stock
- Startup Stock Photos
Make Your Content Searchable
Offer a search bar to help visitors quickly find content on a particular topic. Category links can direct them to multiple posts on a given topic. And having just a handful of posts appear (on the home page of your blog) will keep them from scrolling and scrolling to reach the bottom.
Simply developing content won’t be enough to help you compete online. You’ll have to invest in social media and perhaps even online ads to continually appeal to your audience. If you develop great content, you will always have an audience.
In part three of the blogging for small business series, we’ll talk about how to blog for money.