You’ve just launched your company’s website, and you’ve created a blog page. You’ve heard that blogging should be a part of your online marketing strategy, but you’re not quite sure how to get started or how to use your blog to your benefit.
Yes, a blog can propel your SEO efforts, but you can’t just post any content on your site and expect to see results. There needs to be a rhyme and reason, or strategy, to your posting.
1. Understand the Anatomy of a Successful Blog Post
Why is it that some blog posts get thousands of shares and likes, while others get none? Exposure certainly has something to do with it, but the content and format of the post also play roles in the popularity of a blog post.
Most successful blog posts follow a blueprint, which looks a little something like this:
- Catchy Headline
- Lead In
- Main Points
- Invitation for Feedback
- List of Related Posts, Comments and Sharing
The format is simple enough, and it’s very successful. Including an invitation for feedback (e.g. what was your experience with this topic?) encourages readers to engage and leave comments.
To get an idea of just how popular this format is, take a look at some of your favorite blogs. Go through each of the points above, and see if their posts follow this blueprint. You may be surprised to find that most (or all) do. You can use this blueprint, or template, to create successful blog posts.
2. Create Posts that Offer Value
The format of the post is important, but the content is even more important. Don’t just create content for the sake of creating content. Provide your readers with value. Create content they want to see and read.
How do you do this? Know your customer and your industry.
If you know your customers, you know their interests, their pain points, their questions, and their needs.
Let’s say that you have a law firm that specializes in mesothelioma cases. Maybe you use your blog to talk about pressing issues potential clients care about. You might write a post about the link between asbestos and lung cancer and how stage I lung cancer has a 31% 5-year survival rate, or you may write a post about promising treatments. Either of these posts will be of interest to your target audience.
Sure, you can also write posts about interesting things your business is doing and success stories, but adding posts that deliver valuable information will generate buzz and get people talking about your business.
3. Don’t Ignore SEO Basics
Successful blog posts put the user’s experience first, but they don’t ignore SEO basics.
On-page SEO takes into account the following elements:
- Use of the main keyword
- Use of related, or long-tail, keywords
- Topic/theme of the page
- User experience
- Depth and value of the content
Write for your users, but include your keywords in the post naturally. Don’t go overboard.
Along with your keywords, make sure that you link to other blog posts and pages on your website.
Your blog can propel your SEO efforts, but you need a strategy and plan in place to find success. Providing valuable content is the key most important thing.
Photos courtesy of us.fotolia.com