Starting and keeping up with a blog can take quite a bit of time and effort. But, there is no more powerful tool than a well thought out, well written blog. The bottom line – blogs work! Here are a few tips I offer my clients.
1. Offer valuable content.
Is a blog an e-book or is an e-book a blog? Well, actually, it’s both! Organize some of your blog posts and create a few e-books. Then give the e-books away. It is a very successful way to generate inbound marketing leads.
2. Always provide a call to action.
Ask the readers to leave a comment, offer an RSS feed, an invitation to a free webinar, downloadable information, and anything else you can think of that will engage your blog readers.
3. Provide multiple ways to connect.
Here are three ways to connect with potential readers of your blog: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.
Building a Facebook profile and connections and linking it to the blog is very important. Also use LinkedIn. As mentioned earlier, LinkedIn provides groups of people who might be interested in the content. Join those groups and post. I have two clients who blog weekly and have had terrific results. One started a few months ago and has 2,000 readers. A second has over 16,000! Every week they post their blog in the various groups they belong to on LinkedIn. I post myself – especially when I read a question about what I know – lead generation. My plan is pretty simple. I answer the question and then offer my FREE e-book: 30 Minute Lead Generator and a link to my blog!
4. Use third-party sites to drive traffic. Stumbleupon.com and other third-party websites like it help drive traffic to blogs. Log on to this site to learn more about how it works. Another blog traffic driver to consider is blogclicker.com.
5. Guest blog. Guest post.
Are there blogs that complement what you are doing? Ask them if they might consider being a guest blogger on your blog. Better yet, start with a guest post, establish a relationship with the blog owner, and then ask if you can guest blog on their blog.
6. Host your own blog.
Some of my clients start on free blog sites like Blogger and then, if successful, move off to their own site. It may cost a few bucks, but it provides design freedom, helps build your brand, and most importantly, you can optimize it to help with your website’s SEO.
7. Be personal. Add content.
It is very important to be personal. A blog is part diary, and it is always a good idea to open up a bit. My friend and client David Bloom, Director of Brand Development for Hurricane Grill and Wings (he has the 16,000 followers), does an excellent job integrating personal information with business. He’ll write about something going on in his life of interest (working for a charity, helping a family member, etc.). It’s a great way to get to know him while following his journey building the Hurricane brand. By the way, at this writing, Hurricane has more than doubled their growth since David came on board less than a year ago.
8. Tie back offers to your blog post.
Rotate offers on your blog page that tie back to the post. If you are writing about a business model, offer a white paper on financial modeling. If you are writing about food, maybe create an e-book that provides information about how your food differentiates you in the marketplace. Potential franchisees need to know that you are an expert – a leader in your category. Always keep your white papers, books, reports, and brochures full of engaging content. And one more thing – optimize it! You’ll be more relevant in the search engines. That not only helps increase your listing but will also help drive new leads!