Fads and fashions pass through the marketing landscape, but
remains one of the most compelling platforms for attracting attention.
according to a 2012 HubSpot report
, 92% of companies who blogged multiple times a day acquired customers through their blog – a figure which demonstrates its real value. And there are many reasons why.
A blog is not just a one-way advert, it’s an objective viewpoint that can educate, inform, provoke and inspire: it’s content that there is value in reading. It’s concise, and can be digested in just a few minutes, and therefore doesn’t intrude into the busy days of your prospects. Best of all, it demonstrates your expertise, and is a great introduction to the skills that you offer.
In addition, a regular blog post works wonders for search indexing, and as well as being good content for humans to devour, this is also true of search engines and their insatiable appetites.
You know your own viewpoints better than anyone, so you’re more than qualified to write a blog. But did you know that there are 6 key tricks you can use to make a good blog even better?
Statistics provide readily-available and accessible factual information that add credibility and authority to your blog. Statistics can show your readers which way the wind is blowing in your industry, and help them to shape their own responses or strategies. Take for instance the statistic used at the beginning of this blog, which demonstrates the improved return that you could see from blogging.
Blogging is not just about facts. It’s about opinions too. Well-informed and relevant opinions can really help to provide fresh new perspectives on well-trodden or new topics, market trends, or the products that you’re recommending. An interesting quote can even provide the germ of an idea for a full article. But whether from a Director of IT Services at a well-known global organisation, or Winston Churchill, your quote should always strengthen or add to the blog’s message in some way. For example:
“The lowly blog post has, once again, risen to prominence in the eyes of marketers who now see it as a powerful method to connect with prospects and customers by delivering valuable, educational, and useful information.”
People love pictures. We can spend hours scanning through words in magazines, online and in our inboxes – but it’s a compelling image that gets our attention, and remains memorable. Sometimes a striking image can tell you everything you need to know about how relevant the associated information might be to you. A good image is also a great way to soften and break up what could otherwise seem like an off-putting block of text.
By breaking down your content into a few bite-size sections, you can keep your messaging clear and focused. It can also help you, the blogger to organise your thoughts when you’re writing your piece. Keep it to five or six points – maximum. If you have many more, then perhaps you’re trying to put too much information into one blog. If this happens, try to nail down exactly what you want the piece to say – you may even find you have enough content for a couple more related articles.
If you’re not using
links within your blog
, you’re tragically missing a trick. One of the great USPs of online marketing is that further information can be just a click away. Supplement your piece with links to related articles and resources. (Although it hopefully goes without saying that you’d avoid linking to your competitors.)
What’s the purpose of your blog? Is it to give people a break in their day to mull over an interesting perspective before they get back to their work? At a guess, it’s more likely that you want to draw attention to your offering, or a fantastic product. Be careful though. If the CTA does not complement the content, it will come across as a thoughtless piece of advertising which will largely have the effect of switching people off. Instead, lead your readers by the hand towards the CTA in a way that positions it as a natural conclusion to – or better still, a springboard from – your blog.
As with any piece of writing, the phrase ‘content is king’ still holds true with blogs. But by using the above methods, you can structure your content in a way that will help encourage more readers to pay attention and take action.
And remember, a higher readership brings a greater chance of developing leads.