Let’s talk about blogging shall we? Blogging done right is a beautiful thing and can create relationships based on knowledge and trust with your current and potential customers. Blogging done badly is downright ugly. Blogging not done at all is just sad because it is a missed opportunity to really showcase your brand.
When someone consults with me about boosting their presence on the web, if a blog is part of a viable solution, I always ask them how they feel about it. Answers will range from their grandfather who founded the business “did just fine without a blog!“, (Yes, someone actually said this) to, “what is a blog exactly?”
A Blog is a Blog is a Blog….Uhhh, No
A corporate blog is different from a personal blog. A good way to think of it is to imagine that your blog is a billboard up for people to see 24/7. Anyone that comes by. You don’t want press releases, photos of your kids or vacation, or things that don’t relate to your business. You want only the best, shiniest information out there talking about your brand, elevating and expanding your reach.
Top 3 Bad Things I’ve Seen Done on Corporate Blogs
I’ve seen a lot of strange things on blogs over the years, but there are three examples that really needed help. With their kind permission, I am sharing three cases that stand out to me from recent memory.
Case #1 – The business owner had been given some seriously bad advice and used her corporate blog to accuse her competitors of being so jealous of her success in her niche (note: she wasn’t really successful) that they were attacking her through her blog. She even made up other user names to comment on her own blog to make it look like competitors were sabotaging her business. This was an bad attempt at going viral. A quick look at her traffic showed that when she started that little drama, the true visitors she had stopped coming and traffic had fallen off. She realized her attempt to go viral, had actually damaged her brand. It was time to rebrand and start over. Her recovery involved some tips on how to be a good citizen online and letting us take over her blog.
Case #2 – The business owner started a blog and posted 5+ times a week. He was amazed at how his posts got shared, people asked questions and got answers, ultimately it worked to bring in more business. Then life kicked in, and he had less time to blog because he was handling increased business. His posting schedule fell to a couple of times a week, then once a month, and then it wasn’t happening at all. He contacted me for a consultation because he heard from people who called said, “Oh, I thought maybe you had closed your business because your blog hasn’t been updated in 3 months...” That one was an easy fix. He needed to outsource his content creation. We get together every Friday afternoon for a phone chat to plan the posts for the coming week. Sales are up and engagement is good.
Case #3 – I got contacted by someone who owned a travel agency who wanted help because his traffic had fallen off and he couldn’t for the life of him figure out why. A quick look at his website pretty much told the story. His corporate blog for his travel agency was filled with posts promoting his band. Where they were playing, photos from the shows, and lots of images of him smooching women in small clothes. I told him his blog really didn’t scream, “Let me book your next trip!” He agreed and we helped him set up a site for his band so he could separate the two businesses. Then we revamped the travel blog and came up with content plan to showcase the services of his travel agency.
9 Tips for Being the Best Darn Blogger Ever
1 – Set a schedule and stick to it. At the first sign you’re not hitting your posting goals, outsource.
2 – Fact check anything you post. If you quote something – quote your source or link to it.
3 – Use royalty-free images. There are a lot of great venues to get them. If you need help, just ask!
4- Use your blog to talk about how your products or services work.
5- Show how your products can solve problems.
6- Check for comments every day, engage people and answer them. It helps create trust.
7- Keep it positive. No matter how rude or awful someone is in a comment, take the higher road. A person unhappy with your company is an opportunity to win over a loyal customer. Do the right thing.
8-Only use tags to describe your post that actually relate to the post, not your entire site. Don’t use the same tags over and over. Each blog post is a potential landing page. Target your audience with each post you make.
9-Set up a separate section on your site for news – no one wants to read news or press releases in a blog post. Even that relative of yours that has Fox News on 24/7 isn’t interested in reading the latest news on a blog post.
Use these tips and harness the power of your corporate blog. Need some help? Contact us and we’ll be glad to help you.