The Ultimate Do’s and Don’ts of Business Blogging
So you’ve thought about writing a blog, and maybe you’ve even published your first post. It’s possible that you find blogging a little confusing and you’re not quite sure where to take it, or what you should and shouldn’t say. Nowadays, people can make an entire career out of writing and sharing blogs, and it has quickly become a very saturated industry. However, blogging for business and blogging for you are two very different things.
Most people think that writing a blog means just sitting and typing, but it takes a lot more thought and planning than many people realise. Once you press publish, there’s no going back (no matter how fast you think you can edit a mistake).
Good content takes time, and it takes a mapped out strategy and thoughtful articulation in order to create resources worth sharing. Your customers are swamped by the amount of information available online, so it’s understandable that it takes businesses a lot of time and resources to create valuable content.
Although it might be tempting, you can’t just sit there and tell the world what you think about Donald Trump. Your business doesn’t care about Donald Trump, even if you do. Keep that for personal blogging. It’s easy to get caught up in what’s trending and what people are talking about online, but be careful not to take a swipe at someone or something that could harm the reputation or credibility of your brand.
That said, it is important to have character. While it’s advised that you don’t rant, rave or ramble, you need to have personality. Have a bit of fun with your blog, insert some humour or some insight here or there and remember that more than anything, people buy people.
We know that writing a blog for your business is a huge learning curve. It can be daunting, and there are so many things to remember. Here at Thomas Design, we’ve compiled some of the best advice that we think is essential for any business blog.
Tips for your blog
- Know your messages, and work on developing a voice for your blog. Blogs are usually chatty, friendly, and informal, but this doesn’t mean you can’t be professional. Business blogs are finely tuned to be both, and it takes time to craft the perfect voice.
- Most internet users are scanners, a habit built from scouring a digital landscape filled with limitless resources. Keep your paragraphs short, and avoid overcomplicating your sentences with jargon or complex syntax.
- Remember SEO – Use keywords in the title, description, and opening paragraph. Use sparingly though, as Google will pick up on keyword stuffing.
- Avoid using too many typefaces such as bold and italics. These should only ever be used for emphasis (and used sparingly, at that), and for subtitles or headings.
- Curate your visuals – don’t just throw any old picture into a blog post and expect it to fit. Make sure each image is high quality and that you have the rights to use it, even if that means taking your own photos.
- Use lists. Content websites such as Buzzfeed have tapped into user habits by producing quick and easy content that is effortless to read. Lists can be humourous, informative or entertaining, just make sure they align with your key messages.
- Don’t bash your competitors, you’ll end up dividing your audience.
- Do encourage feedback, and use a call to action.
- Do link to relevant articles and sources, as this will strengthen credibility.
- Do promote all content on social media several times a day, and use repeat promotion with varying titles and snippets.
- Do write with authority. Remember that you’re an expert and what you have to say can make a huge difference to people, whether that’s competitors or customers.
- Don’t be a know it all. There’s a fine line between authority and cockiness, so be cautious.
- Use anecdotes to make your blogs more authentic.
- Be funny, it’s always good to make someone smile.
- Always proofread. No one will take you seriously if you don’t know the difference between we’re, where and were. A fresh pair of eyes always helps with editing, so ask a co-worker to proof for you.
- Enjoy your blog. It’s so obvious when people blog for the sake of it, so have fun with it and be passionate about your content.
For more information on how to improve your business website, please contact us at Thomas Design.