Beginning A Business Blog
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Beginning A Business Blog



This presentation is for business people who would like to integrate business blogging into their marketing arsenal. BRIEFLY covering: ...

This presentation is for business people who would like to integrate business blogging into their marketing arsenal. BRIEFLY covering:
Why you should have a blog
How to come up with content
How to optimize your blog posts
How to post your blog
Best Practices



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Beginning A Business Blog Beginning A Business Blog Presentation Transcript

  • Beginner’s Guide to Business BloggingPresented byKim Beattythebuz@creativebuz.com24February2012 to
  • Introduction  This workshop is for business people who would like to integrate business blogging into their marketing arsenal. We will BRIEFLY be covering:  Why you should have a blog  How to come up with content  How to optimize your blog posts  How to post your blog  Best Practices
  • Objectives  Showyou the tools you need to get started, and how to come up with content
  • #1: Why you should have a blog foryour business  70% of Canadians say they use social media  Companies that blog have 55% more website visitors.  B2C companies that blog get 88% more leads/month than those that don’t.  B2B companies that blog get 67% more leads/month than those that don’t.  61% of businesses said they track what people are saying about their brand online. Source:, Hubspot – The State of Inbound Marketing 2011
  • One of the best ways to generate interest and market your business is by publishing a business blog.Companies that integrate blogging into their marketing arsenal generate more visitors, more inbound links and moreindexed pages on search engines than companies that don’t. Blogging does many things for you and your company:   It is a long-term marketing strategy so it helps communicate with your customers and prospects as your company lives, grows and evolves.   It helps to drive traffic to your main marketing vehicle, your website.   It introduces you as a leader in your profession and gives you another means to earn people’s trust.   It helps you stay on top of trends and innovations in your industry by forcing you to research for content   It improves your communications skills by writing in a digital medium.   It provides you with information about what people are saying about you and what they’re interests are.   It gives an opportunity to engage your audience through feedback and comments.   A blog that is well optimized and promoted and content-rich will help, over time, increase your business.
  • Now What???!!!!
  • Do you remember back in school when you had to write a essay on a topic and didn’tknow where to start? Welcome to blogging for business!First rule – breathe!Second rule – don’t panicThird rule – breathe!Luckily, starting is the hardest part and it’s best to take the time to make a plan.
  • Make a Plan
  • By planning your Blog first, you will remove most of the challenges that come with starting a business blog.Decide on:  Blog title  Blog Platform (whether it’s on a blogging platform such as Blogger, WordPress or a subdomain on your website)  Design of the blog  How often you will post  Who will be responsible for the Blog  Who will write the blog  Company policy as to content, comment moderation  What will be the content – topic suggestions, ideas, photos/graphicsCreating a roadmap will help you stay on track and less spinning your wheels.
  • # 2: How to come up with content  Ask! Your clients, suppliers, co-workers, colleagues, friends and family for suggestions, questions to answer  Keep up with trends/issues in your industry and write about them and your opinions  Let your fingers do the walking – check out blogs/articles from others in your industry or trade or speak to experts you know  Have guest bloggers  Curation or Aggregation, but don’t Hoard!
  • Do your research first! Start by answering some of your customers’ most popular questions. Whoever is your business’ primary source(s) of communication with your customers, suppliers, community – should, for a couple of days, write down every single question somebody asks them. Ultimately, this will give you a really rich list to help you generate blogging ideas.•  Review industry trends•  Compare prices of products or services in your industry•  Conduct brief interviews with experts you know•  Sometimes, you can take something that may have been published or printed, remove some proprietary information and with a bit of rewording, transform it into a great blog post. Ideally, you’re showcasing the inside of the brand and your company.•  Having other industry bloggers to write articles for you. The benefits to you is more rich content, and the benefits to them is increasing of audience beyond their normal readership and the inbound links, (links directed to their own blog) will help them rank better on the search engines. Curation or Aggregation is simply gathering pieces and archiving them on your blog. Don’t hoard, make sure the articles provide some type of value to your own readers. Ask yourself these questions:   Are you saving the reader time by putting all of these resources in one place?   Are you offering your own opinion and insight against what somebody else has said?   Most people are going to be flattered if you want to share their content. It’s also a great opportunity to build a relationship with them. The simplest guideline is to “do unto others as you would have done to yourself”. Make sure you’re following other bloggers’ content usage guidelines, and make sure you appropriately attribute whatever you post to the original author. When linking to others’ content, it’s also a good idea to create links that open in a new tab or window.
  • Now What???!!!!
  • So you have a plan, ideas for content, the next thing on the list is where to put yourblog.Besides having your blog on your own website, you should consider also posting onother sites as well such as CARAHS. Like a spider-web, the more links you have drawingto your site, the higher you go in the search rankings and the larger the audience youreach.Also, if you are not ready with your website, posting in community portals likeCARAHS will get you started in preparation for your own blog.
  • #3: Where do I put it?!
  •   There are several ways you can write your blog and lot will have to do with how your website is set up.  If you don’t have a website, you can integrate your website with your blog, in other words, build your website in the same platform as your blog.  If you have a website, you can set your blog up as a subdomain of your site, or use a blogging platform and link it to your website.  This would be a good time to consult with a web professional such as CreativeBuz, to help you find a solution that will work best for you.
  • Blogging Platforms
  • There are several blogging platforms out there. Platforms are web-based applications thatprovide you the tools to add written, video, or add photo content to your own page orwebsite and archive it on the internet, either on the platform portal or your own domain.Most are free, though some themes, plugins and widgets can be premium and fee based.Most commonly used are: Wordpress, Blogger, Tumblr. Others: Moveable Type, ExpressionEngine, Squarespace, Typepad, Posterous Spaces, Compendium Blogware, Drupal, Joomla,Weebly, Webnode, NingSome of these platforms can be self hosted (you can put them on your own webservers),while others are hosted on there servers only.Which one you choose is up to you, they all have benefits and drawbacks, but I suggest thatyou stick with the most popular as they are the most supported and highly searchable such asWordpress, Blogger, or Tumblr.
  • Wordpress   WordPress is a free, open-source blogging platform that has grown into a full-fledged content management system   It does have an upgrade option of $99/yr US
  •   Or you can host your own Wordpress site on your own web server. CARAHS and Benefits for Women are examples of Wordpress sites.
  • Blogger   Google owns Blogger and has it integrated with Google Accounts. The platform has been around a while and is still an excellent choice.
  • Tumblr   Tumblr is one of the fastest growing blogging platforms in 2011. It is an excellent choice for ecommerce.
  • Once you have set up yourblogging account, you canstart setting up yourtemplate, keeping in mindthese elements of your blog.
  • So now you have your blogplanned out, a schedule set,the platform and thecontent. Now it’s time toadd the spices to finish itoff.
  • # 3: How to optimize your blogposts  Add Social Media Sharing Buttons  A picture is worth a thousand words  Give it a Handle: Titles need to Be Clear & Direct – 12 tips on blogging Create Urgency – Get the Latest Trends Give advice - How-To’s or How Not To’s  Please Format!  Use Call to Actions  Take advantage of the real estate  Entertain  Be the Expert
  • You need to optimize your content to grab people’s attention and rank well in search engines.  Give your blog content more reach by including social media sharing buttons (e.g. “Like,” “Share on LinkedIn,” “Tweet,” etc.) on each post. This will encourage readers to share your content with their personal networks and expand your reach beyond your own connections.  Use Images - Include an image that conveys what the blog post is about. This makes your content visually appealing to readers and breaks up blocks of text content. A blog post that has some type of visual element—a photograph, a graphic, or some type of infographic—typically performs a little better than a post that’s purely text.  Eye-Catching & Optimized Titles - Headlines are the most important element of your blog posts. One of the best things you can do to capture readers’ attention and entice them to view your post is to give Your blog an awesome title.  Formatting – It’s important to break up blocks of text into chunks. Online reading is not like reading a physical book. The online reader wants to be able to immediately scroll through content and scan subheaders, bold text, and even bullet points.  Call to Action - To maximize lead generation potential, point these links to landing pages for downloadable offers such as an upcoming or archived webinar, demo requests, free trials, etc.?  In the sidebars of the homepage - In addition to the individual blog articles you publish, the homepage for your blog can help generate leads in itself. The top of your blog as well as its sidebar are both prime real estate for CTA (call to action) banners and buttons. Feel free to test and rotate different offers to make sure you’re using this space for maximum lead generation power.
  • # 4: How to post your blog Use Wordpad or Word then paste into this area. Note the tabs,Visual and HTML.Visual lets you write/see the way the post would look like; use HTML when you want to add code. Don’t forget to click the publish button when you are finished and want it to go onto the site, or “save draft” if you want to make changes first before it goes onto the site.
  • # 5: Best Practices1.  Think like a Publisher2.  Build Incoming Traffic from Non- Branded Keywords3.  Ask Your Readers What They Want4.  Connect Blog With Your Website
  • Summary  Start a Business Blog as a long-term promotional tool in your marketing arsenal.  First, take time to make a plan, a roadmap to creating your Business Blog.  Research, Learn and Ask your way to finding rich content  Decide what blog platform will work best for you and your company  Keep in mind the elements of design  Optimize your blog for great reading and to increase traffic  Write about your core competency, what you know and are good at.  Enjoy the experience and share what gives you pleasure in your field of work!  If you need help, ask a marketing professional such as myself.
  • Example of a successful Blogger
  • Ana White’s Blog stats
  • Happy Blogging!I hope you found this information sessionuseful. If you have any questions or wouldlike more help with your website orbusiness marketing, I would be happy toassist you.Thanks!Kim