Considering adding a blog to your website? Don’t really know what it involves? We’ve put together a complete guide to answer all your pressing questions about B2B blogging.
Why should I have a blog?
This is perhaps the most important initial question. Why should you even bother with a B2B blog?
There are many benefits to having a blog on your websites. These include an increase in:
- Traffic flow
- Social shares
In fact, if done correctly, content marketing can generate an increase of 67% in leads.
How do I start a B2B blog?
When you’re first starting out with a blog, there are a few easy steps to follow:
1. Know your audience
Before you even start to write content, the first thing you have to establish is why your audience is. Who are you going to be writing your content for?
To get the answer to this, you’ll need to use your Google Analytics data. This will tell you demographic information such as your audience’s gender, age, and interests. This gives you more insight into who you’re writing for and what they would like to be reading about.
Once you know who you’re writing for, the next step is to start generating content ideas. This is perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of B2B blogging. After all, you want to think of something that is interesting, relevant to your industry and something that hasn’t been written one thousand times before.
Fortunately, there are many tools you can use to help generate blog ideas. Tools include:
These tools will allow you to get an idea of what people are interested in reading, as well as what has already been written on the topic.
It’s a good idea to dedicate a specific allocated time towards idea generation. Create a bank of content ideas, so when you sit down to write your next B2B blog, you don’t have to spend half your time just thinking of the idea.
3. Create a schedule
Blogging takes time. Unfortunately, a lot of business workers are often time poor. As a result, blogging often becomes a low priority. If you’re going to have a serious B2B blogging strategy, it’s important to dedicate some time out of your schedule to writing, editing and uploading the content.
It’s important to not over-commit yourself when creating a schedule. It might sound ideal to have new content being produced on a daily basis. However, if you don’t have the resources available then it’s not a practical commitment. Look at how much time you and your team can dedicate to blogging and decide from there how frequently you are going to publish blog posts. It doesn’t matter what the schedule is – it could be daily, weekly, fortnightly. It is just important to maintain that schedule. Once you build up a following, your readers will come to expect content on a consistent basis.
Hubspot undertook a study and found that companies that publish 16+ blog posts per month received 3.5 times more traffic than those who published posts 0-4 times per month. In fact, Hubspot even found there was a positive correlation between more posts and more traffic for B2B companies. Those who blogged 11 or more times per month in the B2B industry has almost 3 times more traffic than those who blogged 0-1 times per month. The amount of traffic you aim to achieve is also an important factor to consider when creating a schedule for your blog.
4. Time to write
Once you know who you’re writing for and how frequently you’re aiming to write, it’s time to start! When you’re writing your content, keep in mind:
- Content length: how long are all your posts going to be? Long form content is increasingly becoming more popular and will make it easier to get your blog piece ranking on search engines.
- Structure: no one wants to read a wall of text. Consider breaking up your text with subheadings, numbered lists or bullet lists and images. This will help with readability and make more people want to read the piece.
- Your message: what are you actually trying to say? Make sure you know what you’re saying, and stick to your argument. Make sure your piece is something the reader is going to find useful and interesting.
- Self-promotion: isn’t the whole point of blogging to get more people to your website? You don’t want your content to be a sales pitch for your company – people just don’t want to read it. Instead, focus on writing content that people can learn from and will want to share.
- SEO: don’t forget about SEO when publishing your blog posts. All of your blogs should be appropriately optimised. This includes using the correct keywords, headings, and optimising URLs, meta descriptions and alt tags.
- Call to action: consider ending your blog post with a call to action. Do you want people to leave a comment? Share your piece on social media? Read other blog posts? Leaving a direct call-to-action helps motivate readers to take that next step.
If you’re needing inspiration, why not check out those within your industry who already have B2B blogs? You can see what they’re doing, what they could do differently and how you can use that within your own strategy.
Once your piece has been published, you need to focus on promotion. After all, there is no point in writing blog posts if no one is going to read it.
The most obvious platform for promotion is social media. However, things can look dire for businesses trying to promote their work on social media. In recent years there has been a strong decline in organic reach on Facebook. This means fewer of your followers are going to see your blog post you’ve shared on your business’ page. Instead, you may need to consider looking at Facebook Ads. This is a cost-effective way to ensure your content gets the reach and engagement it deserves.
To encourage readers to share your blog, consider inserting social shares buttons on your website. This means people won’t have to manually copy your URL to their social network and will be more likely to share your post. Consider placing buttons at the top or bottom of your blog post, or even running horizontally down the side of your piece. The more social shares you get, the more traffic will be driven to your website, the more your search engine result ranking will increase.
Now you know the B2B blogging process, it’s time to start running a blog on your own website!
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