So you have a blog on your website but you're not quite sure what to write in it or how to use it. This post should answer those questions and have you on your way to creating solid content that converts to paying customers.
Content marketing is more than just a buzzword. When done right, it can convert prospects to customers for years to come. Although content marketing has a high ROI it takes some time to build up.
People don't want color, they want MEAT! So give it to them. Don't try to fluff up your page with BS. This isn't a college essay with a word count you have to meet. Stick to what you brought them there for and that's it.
Start with a plan. Your posts should support your mission to convert lookers into buyers. They can be ongoing education for your existing customers to keep them loyal to your business and buy from you again. You should have a segment of your market in mind when writing a post. Know and keep track of what your goal is for each post. Because that is the only way you can measure (using goals in analytics) your success.
Blog posts are your take on a situation and demonstrate your expertise. It could be a question a customer asks. It could be an example in the news that relates to your industry. Whatever your topic is, it's not as important as your unique view and approach is.
Use tightly focused paragraphs that have a single thought. Make sure those paragraphs don't run on too long. Three to four sentences is good and doesn't look like a “wall of words” that scares off readers.
There are two types of readers, those who read every line and those who skim and read what they find important. The more you cater to both, the faster your audience grows.
Using headings ensures more people get the points you're trying to make. The readers get reassurance from the heading that the paragraph will be worth reading. The skimmers use it to quickly get to the point.
You will likely have existing content that helps add to the point you're making. You don't need to rehash the same content to convey the point it makes. Link back to it. It helps for people who want to know more.
Images are powerful. They can stir emotions and convey what the post is about at a glance. That helps get interested people attracted to your post and reading it. The source I use for images is here.
The ideal image for a post is something that is not just related to the post, but helps describe it visually. After all when you post to social media, the image is the first thing that gets attention and builds interest. If you “bait and switch” people with click bait images that have nothing to do with your post, it won’t be long before people just stop clicking. You don’t want to become known as the blogger who cries wolf!
You'll also need to edit the image. Even images that are great as they are shouldn't be used as is. They need to be reduced to a reasonable size to allow the page to load quickly. Here's a post on creating images for posts.
If you want to get your prospects to act (buy, call, sign up, click, etc.) you need to give them a clear Call To Action (CTA). Where does this post fit in with your business? Even though it may just be purely educational, this post can be used to lead the reader directly onto a path of becoming a customer. The subject relates best to a segment of your products/services and should point to the customer path for that segment.
The goal of educational marketing is not to write a bunch of stuff or give away all your knowledge. The goal is to build Know Like and Trust (KL&T). It's not just for fresh prospects either.
Yes content marketing allows you to stay fresh in the prospects' minds until they're ready to buy. It's just a matter of hitting the right person, with the right message, at the right time. Content also helps cement in your customers' minds why they bought from you and should continue to do so.
Now that you have a complete post, you need traffic to get it read. Getting traffic is what social media is for. Copy the link to your post and post it to the social media sites you use.
However, social media is not your only source for traffic. Your existing customers (you do collect contact information including emails right?) and other email subscribers should receive a message from you directing them to your new post.
A post can be far more than just something written on your website. When used properly, it's a powerfully leveraged part of your marketing machine.