The humble blog remains one of the single most powerful marketing tools available to entrepreneurs, small business owners and big businesses. Your blog provides a place to highlight products and services, to give your business a personal face, to grow thought leadership, and to connect with your audience on a deeper level. However, it is crucial that you practice good blog management techniques to ensure effectiveness, save time and really create the impact you need to see. Let’s look at some of the basics of blog management.
Yes, blogs can be informal things. However, the most successful blogs are planned strategically and tied directly to a company’s goals. This applies to everything from the topics chosen to the posting frequency selected. In order to plan this way, you’ll need to determine your goals. Those must be concrete, attainable and specific. It does no good to set a nebulous goal, such as, “We want more readers”. There’s no way to measure progress toward that, nor does it tie in with any of the company’s products, services or its position in the market.
Get Your Topics Together Now
There’s a lot of freedom to be gained from blogging “on the fly” but while that might work for personal bloggers, it’s no way to run a business blog. You need to have your topics planned out well in advance. Ideally, you should have a minimum of a month’s worth of blog topics planned and the posts written at one time. This gives you at least some buffer, but it also ensures that there is a constant stream of relevant content being posted to your website.
Not Written as Articles
To be clear, articles can sometimes double as blog posts. There’s actually a lot of crossover between the two. However, when it comes down to it, blog posts should be more personable and articles should be more journalistic. Make sure that your posts strike the tone you want for your company. This will vary from one business to another, and will hinge on your brand’s perception, your position within the industry, and the persona you’re trying to create for your company.
One area in which too many businesses fail when it comes to blogging is in regular posting. Many start off strong, posting once or twice a week for a couple of months. Then, something comes up. There’s a crisis in the workplace and it’s all hands on deck. Someone is out on maternity leave and there is no replacement planned. This is when everything falls apart. Without regular posting, your audience has no real incentive to check back, and they’ll eventually get out of the habit and you’ll lose readers and reach. Set a posting schedule during your planning session and then stick to it. Really, the frequency of posting doesn’t matter as much as staying consistent with your posting.
Reply to Comments
Blogs are social, but in order for that to happen with yours, you need to actually interact with your readers. Ask them questions in the post, but make sure you reply to their comments on each post. Of course, you’ll need to moderate spam or abusive comments, but your authentic readers and followers need to hear from you, and your responses should be timely or you risk alienating them.
Blog management doesn’t have to be a struggle. If you’re dealing with tight deadlines, a lack of staff, or any other challenge, Words You Want can help. Get in touch today to learn more.