Consistently publishing blog posts on your website is one of the most effective ways of boosting your online presence and connecting with prospects. All of our clients have seen great results from blogging at a minimum of one time per week. But there are a few essentials in the blog set-up that need to be taken care of before jumping into the fun part of developing content.
- Make it Mobile – According to the State of Mobile Content Marketing, the percentage of blog visits from a mobile or tablet went up 22% from December 2010 to November 2012 – and it isn’t stopping there. Make sure your blog is set up on a mobile-friendly platform like Hubspot.
- Call it a Blog – “A horse is a horse, of course, of course,” and a blog is just that simple too. Don’t hide behind fancy terms like “insights” that might confuse your visitors.
- Let People Share – One of the core reasons for having a blog is to distribute your content beyond your website and one of the best ways for that to happen is to encourage readers to share your posts. Surprisingly, about half of the prospects we speak with are missing social sharing icons on their blog. Make sure to provide visitors a simple way to share your content across multiple social channels.
- Allow Comments – Permitting readers to add comments to a blog gives your visitors a chance to participate in a conversation with you and increases interaction. When others see this type of engagement on your site, it increases your credibility and encourages dialogue, which can open the curtains to all kinds of great opportunities.
- Provide Categories – We’re all busy, so cut your visitors a break by making it as easy as possible to find topics that interest them. We recommend creating 3-7 categories of topics that you can align each blog post under. Think of these categories as chapters in a book and make sure they are interesting and relevant to the topics you will be blogging about. For example, instead of “Sales” as a category, consider “Business Improvement Tips.”
- Show Titles with Summaries – Rather than showing an entire blog post when someone clicks on your blog, break out the formatting to include the title, summary and image of several posts on one page. This allows visitors to scan the most recent posts and improves the probability that they’ll find a title of interest at first glance.
- Give People a Reason to Take Action – Although better search rankings, more traffic and heightened engagement are nice metrics to monitor, the real reason for content marketing is to boost your bottom line. Make sure each blog post includes a call to action (CTA) encouraging visitors to take a next step on your site.
You might direct them to a follow-up blog post, show them a free guide they might find valuable, or send them to a service page that relates to the topic. But, definitely offer an action item to entice a next step. Give them more related information on the topic. Like right now, here are 4 Sources for an Endless Stream of Blog Topics.
Speaking of next steps, we would love to hear your thoughts on this topic or any blog challenges you’re up against. And, please share this on your social media channel of choice to help others as they navigate the wonderful world of content marketing.