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Business Blogging: Essential or Expendable?

A business blog should be an integral part of every business’s content marketing strategy. A good blog may seem like a lot of effort, and truth be told, it is. A ‘good’ blog requires time and dedication. Between creating quality content, building a following of readers, driving traffic, monitoring, promoting, and engaging… It can feel like a full time job. But, you could argue that running your own business also requires a lot of effort and hard work, so why do so many entrepreneurs do it? There’s a simple reason why:

The reward you get from running a small business should be equal to or greater than the effort put in. That reward can be in terms of financial benefit, the flexibility of being your own boss, or whatever it may be that you get out of being a business owner. If the reward was not greater, then there would be no point in doing it – it would be easier to go back to working for someone else.

Business Blogging: Essential or Expendable?

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Why No One Is Reading Your Blog

You started your blog, you’re faithful to your posting schedule, your copy is free of grammatical errors, your content is strong and no one is reading. Waaaaaaaaaaah. Don’t cry. Look at what you can do to ensure your blog is getting the eyeballs it deserves.

Are you promoting it effectively?

Take the time to promote your blog by sharing your posts on social media. Remember to use a powerful pull quote or a “gripping, but relevant title” to engage readers. Use sites like” BizSugar” to share your tips and tricks and see how your content fares against other writing. The important thing is to keep sharing your URL in an appropriate and resourceful way, seeking out new opportunities without fail. Read more

Taking Your Business Blog to the Next Level

Now that you’ve started your business blog, it’s time for some advanced tactics to attract more readers, beef up your content, and become known as an expert in your industry.

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Goal 1: Attract More Readers

You want your blog to ultimately drive traffic to the rest of your site so people will buy your products or services. That means you need to amp up the number of readers your blog gets so that you’ll convert a decent number of them into customers. 

One of the best places to find new blog readers is through social media. You should be sharing every post you publish through your Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google + page. Here are a few strategies to improve the clicks you get:

  • Customize your update. Simply relying on links to your posts being autopublished isn’t enough. Also craft updates that will really make people curious to click on the link to your post.
  • Schedule updates consistently. Use tools like HootSuite to schedule updates to publish for days after a new post goes live. Make each update different, and entice people in different ways.
  • Use Social Buzz Club. This social sharing community  gets people posting your content to social in exchange for you doing the same.

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It’s Time To Shift Our Thinking About Guest Blogging

In case you’re not as tapped into the SEO world as us marketing professionals, you might have missed the firestorm that Google’s head of Webspam team, Matt Cutts, started a few weeks ago. He wrote a post about Google’s stance on guest blog posts, which many misinterpreted to mean that we should all give up on writing them. Before his words get twisted yet again, let me quote him from his  post:

…if you’re using guest blogging as a way to gain links in 2014, you should probably stop. Why? Because over time it’s become a more and more spammy practice, and if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging then you’re hanging out with really bad company.

A similar outcry happened in 2012 when Cutts made a similar decree about  press releases.

It's Time To Shift Our Thinking About Guest Blogging
 

So Should We Stop Guest Blogging?

Let me interpret what I believe Cutts is trying to tell us.

There are plenty of people using content marketing tools like guest blogging, search engine marketing, and press releases in the correct way; that is: using them to build credibility and to reach a wider audience. But there are an increasing number of people who take advantage of these strategies to get their spammy links on other people’s sites, in the hopes that Google will raise their sites up search results. Read more