"Promoting the Blog with Search Engine Optimization and Marketing"! Piedmont Bloggers July Meetup July 12, 2011 Bill Slawski SEO by the Sea
Before you know what to write about, you need to know: Why you’re writing Who you’re writing to what your competition is saying What makes you different
Identify Your Objectives• Bring locals to your shop or office• Attract customers from outside your local area• Interact with potential clients• Increase sales or leads for services you offer• Help your audience understand what you do• Keep your customers informed about what your business is up to• Build a brand – a mindset people enter when they think about your business• Build links to your site
How can you educate, engage, and entertain your customers? Answer frequently asked questionsWrite about things that are interesting to your customers, or the people whom you want as customersMake them want to continue the conversation Avoid the hard sell!!!
Learn About Your Competitors• Who else blogs about something similar? Subscribe to their RSS or bookmark them• Explore who else offers what you do online and off and study them• Look for industry groups, trade journals, online industry directories and forums, user groups, consumer review sites, or industry educational sources that can be used to build a better understanding of competitors and customers• Where can you turn to when you want to keep track of news and information within your specific industry or market?
Define Your Unique Selling Proposition• What makes you different from those offering similar goods or services?• What would your say or offer to potential customers that would persuade them to want to do business with you?• What do you offer to get people to become repeat visitors?• What do you have on your site for people who have already purchased your products, or used your services?• What is it about what you offer to have other people recommend your site to friends, family, or business associates?
What to Blog About• Be smart, interesting, entertaining, informative, funny, irrelevant, expertise filled.• Give your blog a personality• Make sure the design matches the personality• Write about things that may help fulfill your business objectives and that your customers will look for, in words that they will use to search for what you offer.
If you sell real estate…• Help people learn about the communities they might be considering moving into.• Audience of younger couples with children: show and tell them (photos, videos, text) about local schools, and events and attractions that may interest parents.• DC Commuters: road conditions, public transportation, shortcuts, etc.• All audiences - local social events, recreation facilities, museums, attractions, and local history.
If you run a lumberyard/hardware store…• At least 2 different audiences – contractors and people interested in home DIY projects.• Tips & blueprints for building birdhouses and gazebos and sheds• Zoning laws and architectural review boards info• Difference between architectural styles• Why certain woods tend to be used for certain projects, and more about those woods.
If you’re a travel agent…• You could write about travel, what to pack, what to expect at the airport, etc.• Instead, create interest and excitement• For example, blog about maps, about the London Underground, the route of the Tour de France, a concert tour route for the band Wilco through the deep south, a street level map of Mardi Gras attractions in New Orleans.
If you run a bakery…• Bring the smells and tastes of the kitchen to your audience• Let us know that it’s the start of the peach season, and that you have some fresh peach pies just cooling off.• Show pictures of some local peach orchards, and a little history of the peach industry in the area.• Educate, entertain, and make your audience’s stomachs growl.
Once you know who, what, where, why, and how you’re going to write…• Brainstorm a list of possible topics, which you can continuously update.• Use keyword suggestion tools to help come up with language to use in your posts• Build Relationships: Other bloggers, commenters, customers…