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Breathing New Life Into Your Business Blog
When your customers get bored, this does not bode well for your business. Which also means that if you’re not exactly thrilling them with your blog content, you’re treading thin ice.
After all, if they’re getting very little from what they’re reading, it’s unlikely they’ll buy into your brand…or tell their friends about you…or even stick around, for that matter.
On the flipside of the coin, entertain and delight your customers with quality blog posts and you’ll pretty much have them eating out of the palm of your hand. In fact, research has shown that close to 80% of consumers are more likely to trust and stick with a brand that delivers quality content, compared to those who leave them uninspired and sleepy.
So if you’re worried your small business blog may have begun tipping toward the latter side of the fence and you’d like to nip the problem in the bud, here’s the first half of a two-part guide for revamping and revitalising your output:
1. Write Longer Posts
First of all, getting into the habit of producing longer, richer and more in-depth blog posts is a must. A recent study carried out by Curata found that longer blog posts are up to 900% more effective in generating leads than shorter posts. From a technical standpoint, ‘long’ means posts of 750 words or more.
2. Practice Storytelling
What makes storytelling such an attractive and powerful approach is the way in which it inspires and entertains readers, rather than simply bombarding them with information. Your business background, your brand values, something about you personally – anything that gives them genuine and useful insights. If you can master the art of telling a good story, chances are it will work wonders for your blog.
3. Use a Newsletter
One great way of maintaining interest in your blog is to fire out a regular newsletter featuring links to your latest posts. It’s a case of periodically giving those who sign up a snapshot update of what’s happening on your end of things, along with a reminder to head over and catch up on your blog. Try to remember that your blog, just like your business itself, needs marketing and promoting.
4. Embrace Your Human Side
While there’s an important time and place for stuffy seriousness, a small business blog isn’t it. Quite to the contrary, this is the one place your customers and prospects can head to get a feel for the people behind the brand. Write like a human, talk as if you were talking informally to a friend and work to break down those business-customer barriers that can be both damaging and limiting.
5. Vary Your Text
Next up, while we’ve pushed the importance of writing longer and richer blog posts, you can’t expect 750+ words of unbroken text to attract many readers. Even though it’s technically the same amount of text, longer entries become far more appealing and digestible in the eyes of readers if there’s at least a little variation. From bullet points to pictures to lists to subtitles and so on, vary your text intelligently and you’re guaranteed a positive reader.
6. Hire a Pro
Now, getting someone else to write on your behalf might not be the best idea. You and you alone know your business better than anyone else, but when it comes to your grasp of the English language, that might be a different story. If you cannot say for certain that your posts are flawless in terms of spelling, grammar, punctuation and so on, you might want to enlist the help of an expert.
7. Solve Problems
Readers generally resonate with blogs that in some way make their lives better. It’s the classic story of becoming indispensable by solving problems. Exactly what this means will vary in accordance with your line of work, but helpful resources like guides, tutorials and instructional pieces never fail to score points. They’re also massively sharable, which is a bonus.
8. Make It Interactive
Closing comments on your blog might make spam easier to deal with, but will also at the same time eliminate the all-important interactive element. You need to make your customers feel as if your blog is less of a lecture and more of a discussion forum. You write, they comment, others follow likewise, you reply and so on. This alone can make or break a small business blog.
9. Minimise Jargon
Some of your readers might know what you’re talking about, but you have to be wary of alienating others. Dumbing language down is never a good idea, but at the same time neither is using too much jargon simply for the sake of it.
10. Use External Links
By linking to worthwhile content elsewhere, you effectively tell your target audience members two things. First of all, you tell them that you are in fact the real deal and like to keep tabs on what’s going on elsewhere, rather than confining yourself to your own little bubble. Secondly, it shows you’ve got the guts and confidence to direct your readers elsewhere, knowing they’ll still come back for more.
11. Run a Contest
Another great way of driving interest in both your blog and your business in general is to run some kind of contest. Or better yet, get into the habit of giving stuff away on a regular basis. It’s worth remembering that most of us are suckers for freebies – even if they happen to be quite remedial in nature.
12. Remain Current
Always try to keep your posts on the cutting edge of whatever it is you’re talking about, rather than falling behind on current events. That being said, it’s worth remembering that when it comes to big news, it’s often better to comment or generate discussion on a specific facet of it, as opposed to just regurgitating the facts they’ve already read in a dozen other places.
13. Use Multimedia
Last but not least, multimedia blog posts as a break from the usual text are known to be exponentially more influential and engaging. From infographics to memes to videos to soundbites, anything you can give them to ‘experience’ rather than simply read has the potential to give your blog a serious boost.