How to Create and Manage a Successful Business Blog

The online presence of your business only starts with a website, it doesn’t end there. Even a perfectly optimized website that showcases your company’s products or services becomes stale after some time, if you don’t add anything new to it. New products, yes, but how often do you launch new products? A blog is the solution for this – and for some other important issues.

Benefits of blogging for businesses, besides constant fresh content, include SEO benefits (more content means more long-tail traffic – and that traffic is highly targeted, if you do it the right way), becoming an authority in your industry, and adding a voice to your brand. However, it’s easy to mess it up: people usually think that blogging is like having an online diary, so it’s important to think about some basic rules to it.

Define your audience
The first thing you should do is to figure out who your audience is and what you want to accomplish with your blog. Are you writing for your customers (old or new), or for the other people in your industry? If it’s for the customers, what problems do they have – and how do they google to find the solution, what words are they using? That way you will know what to write about and what tone to use when you’re addressing them.

Be a human, not a sales person
The purpose of writing a business blog is to connect with your clients or business partners in a more personal way and not to sell – you have other pages on your website for that. It’s ok to announce a big discount or to post other important information, but don’t turn your blog into an advertisement. Provide useful information to your visitors, share tips and tricks, answer their questions. Keep your posts efficient – don’t blog just for the sake of blogging.

Host the blog on your own domain
From an SEO perspective, having a blog on your own domain rather than on an external site (Blogger, will be beneficial to the rest of your website – the traffic and inbound links will “spread” from your blog, and the entire website will have much more authority in the eyes of search engines. Also, keeping your blog and the rest of your website together will look more professional from a brand point of view.

Listen to your readers and be mindful of them
Encourage questions and feedbacks, engage with your audience. Ask people what they want to read about, and write about it. Invite your readers to share their opinions in the comments, even if their point of view differs from yours. Always acknowledge what they have to say, and be careful not to let the joke go too far. Also, leave your political and religious views at home – they don’t belong to a business blog, and they can upset your potential customers no matter what side you take.

Blog frequently
Come up with a posting schedule to keep you focused. A blog that isn’t updated regularly looks unprofessional – and sends out bad signals to the search engines. If you don’t know what to write about, start a blog series where you’ll break one general subject into smaller pieces, or make “Friday’s Tip” kind of series.

Make your posts a pleasant read
Use formatting – sub headers and bullet points – to make your posts easier to read, and always double check and proofread what you wrote. It’s easy to make spelling and grammar mistakes when you write, and they give a poor impression of your website and your business in general.

Be patient and don’t give up  
A successful business blog can’t be built in one month, so just stick to it, even if you don’t have any regular readers yet. Over time, your blog will find its way to the right audience. Think of it as a marathon where steady and consistent wins the race.

Write your first post
Now you’re ready – give it a try!

Jeff Gross is an internet marketing expert. Through his company, Jeff successfully leverages social media marketing, SEO, and website development to boost local businesses like across the web.

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