13 Business Blogging No-No’s
Nowadays blogs are everywhere and are on just about every topic imaginable. As of 2011, tumblr and WordPress housed some 110 million blogs worldwide. So, with this plethora of opinions, facts and anecdotes, what can one do to boost their own content’s visibility and blog activity? What things can you avoid doing in order to strengthen your content? Here are a few business blogging no-no’s that’ll help you shine.
[Wanna learn how to create engaging content? Attend our free Webinar August 7th]
- Not Integrating Your Blog With Your Website – By failing to do this you are losing out on valuable SEO opportunities. If your blog acts as a subdomain or an extension of your corporate website, you’ll get more indexed pages on google. There’s also something to be said about the centralization and branding of having your blog apart of your corporate website. People don’t have to go to two different sites entirely and you won’t be stuck with the work of running separate SEO campaigns for each domain.
- Tooting Your Own Horn – Yes, if you’re a business, it can be hard not to indulge in free advertising about yourself if given the chance. And while posting from time-to-time about product-related news is acceptable, you don’t want to become too product-centric in your posts. If you do this, people will tend to think that you are disingenuous and only have pleasant things to say about yourself. Try to create content surrounding current events relevant to your industry or audience. Be unbiased. In social media transparency and honesty are key.
- Publishing Infrequently or Inconsistently – The more you blog, the more traction you get and the more likely you are to generate a lead. Pretty simple.
- Publishing Stuff about the Latest Perfumes…When You’re in Software Development – First let’s be clear – on your personal blogs you’re pretty much free to post whatever you’d like. That said, if you’re a software developer and perfumes are your hobby, then post away! However, if your software development business is posting content on perfumes on its blog, that can lead to a few issues. If you are publishing off-topic content, it can hurt your chances of developing a substantive community or a community at all! People like guarantees and are usually satisfied if the topics are related to what should have enticed them to your blog in the first place – your business.
- The Monotony of Content – Someone once said that variety was the spice of life. Clearly they were a blogger. As mentioned before, it’s important to stay on topic with yours posts, but that doesn’t mean that every article has to be on the same subject. If you’re in enterprise services, try to branch out from ERP subjects, but explore the latest innovations in CRM, social selling, and even social media! Also try adding different images, infographics and feature guest bloggers from time to time if possible.
- Writing, but not Enticing – It’s great to write content, however, how will people find it if you do not engage them? Unless you’re Oprah Winfrey or Justin Bieber, people generally aren’t going out of their way to find an article that’s nestled in the deep dark crevices of Google space. Lucky for you there’s several ways to get people’s attention and keep them engaged:
- Share your posts via various social networking platforms
- Use the appropriate keywords and tags to grab people’s attentions
- Keep blog comments section open
- Regularly monitor and reply to comments
- Do not moderate comments
- Ask questions in your blog. (Makes for a great call-to-action)
7. Failing to Optimize for Search – The number of terms that a website can rank for is directly related to the size of the site. Having a blog (an integrated one that is) can significantly improve your odds particularly if you’re posting frequently enough. Blogging is an essential practice for traffic building. To better optimize your blogs, you should remember to use the right keywords, keeping in mind that the most important places for keywords are within the body of the URL and article title. Using the appropriate keywords and phrases in the best way (i.e. using “how to use a blog” vs. “blogging”) can help improve your search rank.
[Going to Sage Summit? Visit our booth for some hands on blogging and social media material]
8. Forgetting to Have Good Blog Structure and Design – Not only should your blog website look nice aesthetically, every article should be laid out in a fashion that promotes engagement. For starters, the blog homepage should clearly link back to your corporate site and vice-versa. It would also be a good idea for each blog article to have a clear call-to-action (CTA) along with a visible subscription CTA. Lastly, it wouldn’t hurt to have noticeable social sharing options as this would allow for easy promotion of your content for readers.
9. Rushing Through Blog Titles – Blog titles are important – more important than many of us realize. It’s not exactly the same as turning in the midterm paper that the instructor had to read no matter how lame the title was; when it comes to your blog, this is the first thing people will see and in most cases, the first and only thing that will be shared using social tools. To this end, it is important to have titles that are concise, not vague, and have the right keywords. When someone looks at your blog title, they need to have a pretty clear idea of what the article is about. Actionable keywords are great attention-getters as well. “How-tos” and “Top Tens” are attention gold.
10. Burning Out From the Pressure of Original Content – Contrary to popular belief, all blog posts don’t have to be original, nor do they only have to come from one source. Many blogs participate in “content curation” which is basically the selection and aggregation of content from different sources on a specific topic. Many readers benefit from this as it saves them the time of searching for the content themselves. It can also be useful to tap into your own network and search for guest bloggers, including contributions from your employees.
11. Not Preparing for Lead Generation – If there are few (or maybe even zero) calls-to-action (CTAs) on your blog, it can severely limit its potential to convert visitors into leads and customers for your business. Test the placement success of your CTAs! You may discover that placing links to your webinars have a higher click-rate when placed at the top of each blog post.
12. Failing to Use Social Media – As mentioned before, it’s a great, if not necessary idea to share your blog posts across your social networks. If the right twitter hashtags are used and if the blog is set up correctly, you have the potential to reach thousands if not millions of people. Sure, success will not happen overnight, but the more you begin to share your content, the more people will begin to notice you and in turn share your posts. With social media you have the potential to establish a presence and can do so by doing likes like sharing to LinkedIn groups, on your Facebook page or other networks based on your interests. For tips with optimizing social media for your business, check out our free summer webinar series
13. Not Paying Attention To Your Blog Analytics – In business, everything needs to be measured. Your blog analytics are what tell you what posts are successful, who clicks on them, and what times you get the most views among many other things. Basically, your analytics are what you need to see in order to gauge your blog’s performance. It’s pretty difficult to improve without them.
[Hubspot has some pretty neat blog analytics software. Try a free demo.]
Remember – don’t give up if you do not immediately see the results you want. With blog posting, it will take some time to get into the groove of things and to fully understand what works best for your business. You CAN do it and you will!