How to Maximize Your Business Using a Blog
Small business owners often wonder whether they should be blogging. It's true that it takes time and effort to have a blog for your business, but if you provide valuable content on a consistent basis, a blog can be an inexpensive way to help you grow your business.
Whether your business involves selling a product or a service, making your business name familiar to potential customers is one of the most important keys to success. A blog can be the vehicle that will make your business name known to the right people.
Suggested reading: How to Get Your Blog Noticed by Industry Leaders
The goal of your blog will be to get people to –
- click on your blog
- read a post
- engage with a comment
- share the post
An Attention Grabbing HeadlineIf your title doesn't grab the attention of readers, then they'll never proceed to the point of actually reading your post. Readers are more likely to read a post with the title ‘How to Catch Mr. Right’ than ‘Catching Mr. Right.’ Do you see the difference? The first title catches the reader’s interest because the implication is that after reading the post, the reader will know how to find a boyfriend.
Another way to grab your reader’s attention is to use a number in the title. For example, a good title for the previous example could also be ’10 Ways to Catch Mr. Right.’ And an even better title would personalize the wording to ‘How You Can Catch Mr. Right’ or ’10 Ways You Can Catch Mr. Right.’
Make sure that your headline is not too long. Some pundits suggest that a title shouldn’t be longer than six words. That’s not a hard and fast rule, but it’s a good goal.
Read more: How to Create a Free Business Website
Know Your Audience's Pain PointsYour title grabbed the attention of readers. Now you need to be sure that your blog is directed to the needs and interests of your readers. You shouldn't be writing content that you find interesting – unless that content also addresses one of your audience's pain points.
In other words, you need to write valuable content about how your service or product can help your readers solve a particular problem they are facing. In addition, you should write posts that help your readers, even if it doesn't extol the virtues of your product or service. Look around at what other companies in your industry are publishing, and write better content on those topics.
When readers see that your blog helps them in ways that doesn't involve selling, you will gain their trust. Just keep in mind that each blog post should focus on the reader – not on what you love to write about.
How to Get CommentsIt may seem obvious to you that readers should comment on the content of the post they've just read. But according to a survey on Savage Minds, 95% of their readers never or very rarely comment after reading a post. These rates seem to be the norm online today.
So how, then, do you motivate readers to comment?
- At the end of the post, instruct readers to leave a comment. Many readers actually don't think that what they have to say is important enough to leave a comment. Tell them you want to hear their comments.
- End your post with a question. Readers are more likely to leave a comment when they have an actual answer to your question.
- Respond to every comment with empathy about their specific situation or with another resource the reader can go to. When other readers see that you follow up with quality responses, they will be more likely to leave comments as well.
How to Motivate Readers to ShareYou've written a catchy title that did its job and attracted people to read your high-quality content that you're sure is worthy of being shared by your readers.
Your SimpleSite blog makes it easy for readers to share your content just by clicking the share buttons at the upper right of the page. But online readers have become somewhat blind to share buttons, so you need to come right out and ask them to share it. Don't be shy.
You might even ask them more than once to share because after they've read a few more sentences, they are likely to forget. Readers are in a mindset that is very different from yours. You understand the value of sharing, and so you share articles that you've read and liked. But readers often don't really understand the importance of sharing your content. So don't be shy – just ask.
If you haven't started a blog yet, click here to build a blog for free.
Author: Kate Benzin