Why Blog Articles Should be a Crucial Part of Your Marketing Strategy
What’s the Big Deal About Blogging?
As a business owner you’ve probably heard the term “blog” or “blogging” from marketers and perhaps other business owners and entrepreneurs. What’s all the buzz about? Do you really need to include blog articles in your marketing strategy? Is it really worth the time and effort?
Not only is it worth your time, it is a must for your digital marketing campaign. And you will find that writing articles helps you tie together other areas of your marketing, because just one piece of content can go a long way.
Key Benefits of Blogging
Google Loves Blog Articles
Writing articles will help improve your ranking in Google’s search results. And if you write them correctly and consistently, your articles will display on page one and even the first listing of Google’s search results. Basically the benefits of writing blog articles are two-fold.
- Achieve the “freshness” that Google is looking for. When Google is determining which sites to display in the search results, the goal is to list sites that are of high quality and informative. A site that is adding fresh content on a regular basis will always outperform a competitor’s site with stale and out of date content.
- Target a new key phrase in every article. Typically you can target one key phrase (search query entered by potential client) per article. Posting articles consistently will allow you to rank for multiple phrases and different variations of a key phrase. So in one article, you might target, “Antique Shop in Macomb County”. In the next article you could focus on the search query, “Antique Furniture Store”.
You are the Expert in Your Industry
Blog articles should be more educational and less “salesy” or aggressive. They are a perfect example selling without actually selling. Writing informative articles will provide value to the reader and show that you are an authority in your industry.
Repurpose Articles for Other Marketing Needs
The best thing about writing articles is that they will continue to work for you long after they are posted to your website.
Social Media Content – Looking for content to post on social media? Instead of sharing informative articles from other sites, now you have your own content to promote. This will drive traffic to your website and again, show you are the authority in your field.
Email Newsletters – Instead of creating new content for your newsletters, repurpose an informative blog article. You could take one article in it’s entirety for content.
Or, if you are writing multiple articles each month (which you should be) include a title and snippet from 3-4 articles with links to read the full article. This will drive traffic to your site instead of people simply reading from their inbox.
Create a PDF or eBook – Once you have several informative articles under your belt, you could compile articles of related topics into a short PDF or eBook.
By creating a pdf or eBook you now have something of larger value to give away for free, perhaps in exchange for an email address to help you build your email list.
How to Write Articles that Get Noticed by Your Audience – And Google
Provide Value to Your Audience
As mentioned earlier, your articles should be more educational and less “salesy”. When determining topics, your goal should be to provide value, such as answers to common questions. Think of content that will be highly shareable on social media, perhaps even emotion driven. Focus on the pain points of a given situation. If you are a mortgage lender, write about reasons potential buyers fear getting into the market. Then explain how you addressed these concerns for a client and how they purchased a home successfully.
Apply Search Engine Optimization Techniques
Posting valuable content is the first step. More importantly you need to reach an audience that will connect with your content.
There are so many articles and email newsletters out there with engaging content and great topics but they are not optimized for search engines. Ask your web designer or marketing consultant about how to optimize your articles for Google and other search engines.
Follow Google’s Guidelines
If your goal is to reach potential clients by means of Google search you will have to follow Google’s guidelines. Otherwise, your content will not make the first page of Google and even worse, you may even be penalized by Google.
You can read more about what Google considers quality here:
https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35769 OR just search for Google webmaster guidelines.
Here are two examples where many businesses fail to follow Google’s guidelines:
Duplicate Content – “Can’t I just copy and paste someone else’s article or take certain portions from their article?” No you cannot. Avoid copying and pasting content from other articles or using services that provide the same content to a group of people. For example, there are many services that brand themselves as content marketers but provide a template of content to all of their chiropractor clients or all of their landscaping clients.
Remember Google must perceive your content as unique and valuable to it’s searchers.
Articles Less Than 300 words – Google considers any article less than 300 words to be thin content – in other words not informative or valuable to users. In fact, strive for 500-750 words. Don’t just aim for the minimum. If your competitor writes 500 word articles, then write 750-1000 word articles.
10 Blog Topic Ideas to Get You Started
- Answer frequently asked questions. Are there certain questions your clients are emailing you on a regular basis?
- Record a video and use the transcription for your article.
- Interview a guest.
- Is there a common problem your target audience experiences? Provide a solution.
- Discuss recent projects (perfect for landscapers, architects or any project with before and after photos ).
- Provide helpful checklists or tips.
- Discuss terms in your business that need explaining.
- Review new products in your industry.
- 10 tips for someone starting out in your field.
- Debunk common myths in your industry.