March 28, 2014

Do I really need a blog?

Typing on Computer 1

HubSpot: Companies that blog 15 or more times per month get 5X more traffic than companies that don’t blog at all.

The short answer is yes. According to a recent article in Social Media Today:

  • 81% of U.S. consumers trust advice and information from blogs.
  • Small businesses with blogs generate 126% more leads.
  • 61% of U.S. consumers have made a purchase based on a blog post.

So how do you write a good one?

  • Determine your goal. What do you want to say, and what do you want your readers to do? Do you want to educate the community, develop leads, build awareness around a cause? Stay focused on your goal when you develop new blog entries.
  • Create an editorial calendar — an action plan of what you want to talk about and when. It will keep you on deadline and prevent your blog from becoming stagnant.
  • Keep your entries focused and to the point. Everybody multitasks — while they’re reading your blog, they’re watching TV or cooking dinner. You have to hold their attention. Know what you want to say and find the shortest way to say it. Use bullet points to call out important ideas and make skimming easier.
  • Post frequently. According to a 2012 HubSpot study, “Companies that blog 15 or more times per month get 5X more traffic than companies that don’t blog at all.” If 15 a month sounds scary, start with one a week and build up over time.

Now that your blog is live, it’s time to promote it. Don’t have a large marketing budget? No problem. There are plenty of free marketing opportunities.

  • Share a link on Facebook and Twitter every time a new blog entry is posted.
  • Promote your blog on social media between entries.
  • List the URL on business cards, in your email signature and in the “about” section of your social media profiles.
  • Include the blog as a call to action in e-newsletters.
  • Tell your friends and family about your blog, and ask them to share it with others.

Once your blog is live, don’t forget to reevaluate your progress. Every three months or so, check your analytics to see how many people are reading your blog, how many unique visitors you’re getting and if it’s brought you any new leads. Results not so great?

  • Look at your goal. Make sure you haven’t strayed from it and that it’s not too lofty. Fine-tuning your purpose and desired outcome may make a huge difference.
  • Are you posting at least once a week? If so, try twice a week.
  • Do people know about your blog? If not, spread the word!
  • Can’t figure out the problem? Ask peers to review your blog and provide feedback. Some helpful criticism may steer you in the right direction.

Want a blog, but don’t have time to write one? AB&C can help. We have expert blog writers who also specialize in SEO — an even bigger boost for organic search results. Interested? Write to Paul Pomeroy and he’ll get you started down the right path.

Happy blogging!