By Susan Linning
Even if you’re unfamiliar with the term, you’ve still likely read a blog from time to time (in fact, you’re reading one right now!). Examples of some of the most popular blogs include The Huffington Post (www.huffingtonpost.com), The Daily Beast (www.dailybeast.com) and Mashable (www.mashable.com). Chances are that you encounter these sites on a regular basis, if you spend any significant time online or on social media sites.
There are countless types of blogs. Some (like the Huffington Post) function as news outlets, informative and educational, while others are just for fun or to express an opinion.
Does your business blog? While a blog might not make sense for every small business, you’d be surprised how many companies utilize blogs to promote their services or to stay in touch with their customer base. Blogging allows you to add a personal voice to your business, and it can be a great way to interact with your customers or let your fan base know about the inner workings/goings on within your company. Writing about events or news within your specific industry can make for informative or fun posts, too.
A few good sites to check out if you’re thinking about starting a blog for your business: Tumblr (www.tumblr.com), Wordpress (www.wordpress.com) and Blogger (www.blogger.com). Spend some time navigating these sites and see which platform is the most comfortable for you. There are a variety of customization options for the look and feel of your blog -– use them! Personalizing your blog is another great way to promote your brand and increase your readership.
Many people aim to generate leads through their blogs. One of the best ways to generate leads is to use effective calls to action, or CTAs. CTAs are simple statements that encourage readers to “click here,” “follow us on Facebook,” “check out our latest promotions,” etc. Using CTAs at the top and bottom of your blog, as well as strategically throughout your posts, is one of the easiest and most effective ways to generate leads.
Another great way to generate leads, click-throughs and potential business from your blog is to incorporate text links that lead to landing pages or your business website. Not only do these links encourage reader engagement, they also help with your SEO (search engine optimization) efforts.
Hubspot has a great, in-depth article about the best ways to use CTAs in your business blog. Click here to read more.
Interested in seeing how the experts do it? Check out this link to view the 50 best corporate blogs in the world: http://www.simplyzesty.com/technology/the-50-best-corporate-blogs-you-should-be-reading/# Their take on blogging just might inspire you to build a blog for your own brand or business.
Susan Linning is president of ECHO SOCIAL MEDIA + MARKETING of Miami, which develops and executes social media and integrated marketing strategies, creating custom content and maintaining pages on social media platforms. ECHO also provides blogging and copy-writing services.