by Allison Rice
A blog can be a valuable marketing tool for your business, but only if potential customers read it. Even more importantly, you want to give them a reason to come back to it. There are a few key methods you can use to provoke interest in your company blog.
- Catch peoples’ eye by making the blog visible.
- Maintain their attention by making it relevant and engaging.
- Make sure to update with sufficient frequency so that they don’t lose interest.
- Finally, make it easy for them to find out when you post new content by offering email subscriptions.
1. Make Your Blog Visible
The first thing you want to do is to get potential readers’ attention. When people visit your website, they won’t necessarily take the time to look through every tab in a menu or click every link, especially if they are not in a prime location on the page.
Make sure to highlight that you have a blog on the main page of your website in a spot that readers are unlikely to miss. For example, you can include a box with the title and first few sentences of the current post, along with a link to “continue reading.” At the very least, ensure that readers understand what kind of information and articles they can find in the blog.
2. Keep Readers’ Attention
Once readers click on a link taking them to your blog, you want to make sure to hold on to their attention! The key to that is targeting content to the type of audience you are looking for. With blogs, it is crucial to be up-to-date and to talk about the hottest issues in your field. If you are a social media entrepreneur and concerns about privacy are in the news, that’s what you want to be talking about. If outsourcing among tech companies is a hot topic, be part of that conversation.
You also want to engage readers by interacting with them in the comments to show that you are care about their responses to your posts. Be polite but interested – ask questions and seek clarification about commentators’ position or praise them for bringing different aspects of the issue to your attention. Showing that you want to know more about what they think will make them want to come back and continue to connect with you. A blog is a good way to create a community that shares a common interest. In this case, that can really benefit your business.
3. Update Regularly
The key to updating your blog is consistency and making sure that updates are just frequent enough to hold onto readers’ interest. You want them to know roughly when to expect a new post, but not to overwhelm them.
4. Remind Them to Read
There are a variety of email subscription widgets you can add to your blog. Once readers subscribe, they will receive an email notifying them whenever you add a new post. You want to make it as simple as possible for your readers to find out that you’ve added new content.
Making a Plan and Following It
As you are starting out, you might try to update once every few days, to give each post time to settle in and gain an audience. Once you feel that you have loyal readers and that you are getting enough interest, you can increase the frequency of your posts. It is also advisable to use an analytics program to monitor how many people are viewing and commenting on each post to gain understanding of what topics most interest your blog’s audience.
A blog is a more personal way to interact with potential customers. Once you have it set up and going, remember that you are using it to build a relationship with your readers. Take these relationships as seriously as you would any other and you should soon see the benefits, both for your business and your own intellectual satisfaction.
Allison Rice is the Marketing Director for Amsterdam Printing, a leading provider of custom promotional pens and other promotional products to grow your business and thank customers. Allison regularly contributes to the Promo & Marketing Wall blog, where she provides actionable business tips.