And the lies continue. This time around, the focus has shifted from personal blogs to those ever-so-essential company blogs. Whether you’re currently managing one or considering adding a blog to your company’s or brand’s site, make sure you’re doing it the right way. Your blog can improve your ROI, generate leads, and build your authority – when done right. Here are five lies you might be telling yourself about your blog, and how to go about fixing them.
Lie #1: Our Company Can’t Afford to Blog
Consider Mint, the online personal finance management giant that started out with little-to-no marketing budget. They turned to content marketing in order to get their name and message out, and created a blog for these purposes.
They picked a specific niche, created high-quality, engaging content, and grew their audience. The blog soon became a success. They increased demand, generated tens of thousands of leads, and created buzz about Mint. If you’re running a small operation and are concerned about marketing costs, you really can’t afford not to blog. It’s a great way to stretch a small marketing budget.
Lie #2: We Don’t Have the Time to Blog
You’ve figured out that you might only be able to post every now and then, but not too often. Well, the good news is that you don’t have to do it all by yourself. Explore who else is in your niche, and ask them if they’d be interested in guest posting on your site. They probably will be. Guest posting shares audiences, and is a win-win for everyone.
Or perhaps you’re daunted by the prospect of constantly coming up with fresh ideas to write about. While your content has to be unique (for the love of common decency, please do not plagiarize), it doesn’t have to be original. Some of the most immensely popular blogs are those that curate. Curating content is a quick and easy way to post something relevant to your blog, and it doesn’t require much effort on your part. You can even make a ritual out of it: every Friday you can feature a curation post, it’s something different your readers can look forward to.
Lie #3: This Topic is Super Interesting!
If you work in plumbing, you might be fascinated by plumbing, but not everyone else is. You have to make your content interesting to either your niche audience or the general public. Talk about your profession in a way that will engage the reader. One of the best ways to do this is to make it relatable to their lives.
For example, instead of writing about the different kinds of tubing and pipes that exist, write a post about common mistakes people make when they try to fix the plumbing themselves. Any topic can be interesting, provided you come at it from the right perspective.
This also opens up the floor for comments, I’m sure your readers have some funny stories about plumbing disasters and you can tell them what went wrong.
Lie #4: That Totally Fits my Brand/Niche/Topic
Maybe you’ve got a case of writer’s block and you need to publish something (anything!) to stay on schedule, so you look elsewhere for inspiration.
Or perhaps someone just conveniently offered you a guest post that’s not completely on topic, but it’s not totally irrelevant either.
We’ve all been there.
When the ideas aren’t flowing, it’s tempting to latch on to the first thing that pops into your head or is offered so you can hit the publish button. However, if the inspiration or the guest post is too far off topic, you’ll hinder your company’s blog – and possibly your company – in the long run. If you post something out of your niche, it sends confusing messages about your brand identity or what your company does. Quality over quantity should be your mantra both in business and in blogging.
Lie #5: This is Our Brand Voice
It can be tempting to let loose and joke around on your blog, thinking that it’ll give your brand a “personality.” This is completely true. It will give your brand a personality. However, make sure that personality is in line with your target audience. There’s a fine line between adding personality and being unprofessional. A lot of brands try this with mixed results. Not everyone has the same sense of humor, so make sure your blog’s voice is in line with your company’s voice, and that both are in line with your audience.
Your company’s blog can be one of the most powerful tools in your marketing arsenal. If you’re doing it right, or if you’re doing it horribly wrong, people will spread the word about you. Make sure you’re putting your company out there in a positive, engaging way that will provide value to your readers.