Are you blogging yet? If not, you’re missing out on an impactful way to round out your digital marketing strategy. Blogs are meant to deliver informative, insightful content to target audiences — and they can also be fun. The goal is to draw people to your site and get them to hang out for a bit. Eventually, your readers will come to see you as a trusted thought leader, prompting them to become loyal followers and brand champions.
That said, blogging isn’t something you start doing without a plan. If you want to boost your digital marketing efforts, it helps to design your approach. Let’s look at four blogging strategies you can use to effectively market your business.
1. Leverage Internal Links
Blogs typically contain external and internal links. The point of these links might seem crystal clear, but it isn’t always. While external links typically reference borrowed information like statistics, they might also give a nod to an expert. That individual could be a fellow content creator who’s contributing to your content. Or they could be someone you’ve interviewed to strengthen the appeal and depth of your topic.
Having some external links is a given in a well-researched post. What’s sometimes overlooked in blog writing is internal linking opportunities. Sure, you can link your site’s product pages to appropriate keywords. However, there’s a more effective internal linking strategy you can use. When you develop content pillars, your blogs become the answers to the questions people are asking about a broader topic.
Your blogs provide those answers but also link back to pillar pages containing longer-form content. The idea is to entice readers to “keep turning the page” by clicking on another portion of your site. They learn more about the subject, get a feel for your brand’s authority on the topic, and hopefully convert. Detailed and authoritative content delivered through the content pillar method also tends to attract more backlinks. Additional exposure means more leads.
2. Guest Blog for Other Sites
Out of the 600 million online blogs, there’s bound to be someone else out there in your industry with an adjacent audience. Their blog could represent an entrepreneurial venture, small business, or larger company. Regardless, it’s a chance to expand your thought leadership and audience reach. With 77% of internet users reading blogs daily, contributing content to another site can increase your visibility.
Guest blogging is something you want to put some thought behind, though. Say your goal is to establish thought leadership in the wireless technology space. Your company provides services and sells products that help subscribers access those services. Does it make sense to guest blog on a site about astrology? Probably not.
Instead, you’d want to target blogs with a similar, but still somewhat distinct, audience profile. It helps to pitch to industry peers you already have connections with. Ideally, they have a blog with a larger readership than yours or operate in a related niche with potential. Still, sometimes you have to take a leap and pitch to a blog owner you don’t know yet.
In these cases, you might have a harder sell. But if you find blogs with like-minded topics you can help flesh out, there’s no reason not to try. The opportunities with value will let you include a link to your site’s content. Once you show that your posts are engaging and well-developed, you could become a regular guest contributor. You’ll gain more moments in the spotlight so you can keep building awareness.
3. Create Content Calendars
To some, blogging may look like a journaling exercise. You write whatever comes to mind. This week, it might be how smartphone technology is incorporating AI. Next week, it might be why people are streaming their favorite shows on smaller screens, including tablets.
Approaching content creation in this way isn’t strategic. Your subjects may not match what your company is doing on a larger scale. Plus, you don’t have any inkling as to whether these topics are relevant to your audience. Will they find the content helpful and relatable to your organization’s brand?
A better method is to think through each blog post in advance. Using a content calendar allows you to plan blogs around other initiatives, such as product launches, events, and promos. Another technique is to discuss industry trends and customer concerns. Your content team should be partnering with your company’s internal subject matter experts, including customer service. There may be more than a few ideas you can glean from colleagues with client-facing roles.
4. Optimize Each Post
Boosting your blog’s (and company’s) visibility can’t be done without search engine optimization. Out of all the blogging strategies that can improve your marketing results, optimizing your content for search is at the top. Doing keyword research will point you toward topics your audience is curious about. Keyword research also shows what your competition ranks for and where you might have a chance to gain ground.
About 53% of website traffic comes from organic searches. If you’re not optimizing your blog content, your posts won’t rank. People won’t find your blog as easily, if at all. Incorporating search terms into headlines, alt text, and the actual posts can help. A competitor analysis can do the same.
Say you want to rank for a specific phrase with high-volume potential. Looking at competing blogs will give you ideas for creating something with a unique angle. You want to appeal to what your audience is searching for while providing additional value. Your posts could include first-party insights, a deeper exploration of the subject, or a fresh perspective.
Effective Blogging Strategies
Online content, including blogs, should amplify your digital marketing efforts. It’s a way to keep customers engaged and attract new audiences. Having a plan for your blog is as essential as in any other area of your business. Through the use of a savvy linking strategy, guest posts, content calendars, and keyword-optimized subjects, you can reach your digital marketing goals.