How to put together a company blog

October 2021
 

Starting a company blog is a great way to give your business more visibility online. Just like email and social media, a blog can become a valuable marketing channel to help you attract new customers and grow your brand.

A company blog can boost your reach, showcase your expertise and add personality to your business. However, like every form of marketing, it can take time to figure out which content and format will be the most successful.

We look at how to get started with your blog, the benefits of blogging for business and the type of content you should include.

What is a company blog?

A company blog is made up of short-form (one thousand words in length on average) articles that share news, information or insights about a business.

Like social media, your blog acts as a voice for your business, so it needs to be professional and aligned with your brand. It should also be relevant to your company, whether you’re highlighting your services and team or commenting on the wider industry.

Here are some examples of posts you’d expect to find on a company blog:

  • Coverage of new products or services (this shouldn’t be a copy of a press release – more on this later)
  • Expert commentary or insights on current trends or industry news
  • “Your questions answered” posts, featuring common customer queries
  • Stories that show off your team and company culture
  • Celebrations of milestones, like reaching 100 members of staff or 20,000 sales
  • Behind-the-scenes interviews with different members of staff

A blog can be time consuming to run, so it’s crucial that it contributes to your company’s growth. It can do this in a number of ways, from helping to convert customers into sales leads to attracting new talent to the business.

You can also find ways to fit blogging into time that’s otherwise wasted, such as during your daily commute.

The benefits of blogging for business

You’ve already got a website, social media and a paid advertising strategy. Why start a blog too?

Here are some of the benefits of blogging for business.

1. A blog helps to drive traffic to your website

Every blog post gives you another opportunity to show up on search engines. The more you can rank on search engines, the more customers you’ll reach.

It also gives you new content that can be posted on social media. If your blogs are genuinely useful, interesting or provide important insights, people are likely to share them on their own accounts. This helps you to reach a new audience who could become future customers.

2. It’s an opportunity to generate new leads

A company blog will help to drive traffic to your site. You can then convert that traffic into sales targets by using a lead magnet.

Lead magnets are content assets that people receive for exchanging their information (usually their name, job title and email address). Common assets include:

  • Ebooks

  • Guides

  • Templates

  • Discounted or free trials

By including a link to one of these assets in your blog’s call to action, you keep users on your site for longer and capture information that can be passed onto your sales team.

If you collect user information to generate leads for your business, then GDPR will likely impact your opportunity to generate leads. You need to meet certain regulations when handling personal data and ensure all of your efforts are GDPR compliant.

3. Blogging informs and educates your customers

Every business finds itself answering the same questions from customers on a daily basis. Being able to condense these questions down into a blog post makes it easier for both customers and staff to find answers.

For example, a customer might be trying to figure out if your product’s a good fit for their business. Your salesperson can provide a convincing case, but imagine you’ve got a blog post that details how your product works, the problems it solves and the impact it's had on real-life businesses – complete with testimonials.

The important thing to remember is that blogs are often the first step in a much longer process. Don’t expect to immediately convert visitors to customers with your blog. See it as a way to start engaging them with your business.

How to get started with a blog

The first step in starting a blog is to think about what you want to achieve. It’s not enough to start a company blog because you think you should. It’s essential to have goals in mind, otherwise you won’t see results.

Common goals for blogs are:

  • To reinforce your position as experts and leaders in your market
  • To showcase your culture and attract the best talent
  • To add personality to your business and build your brand identity

While it’s always a good idea to include a mix of posts (especially at the start, while you’re still finding out what readers respond best to) your goals should set the tone and provide direction for your blog overall.

Here are some other tips to give your blog the best chance of success.

Make the blog personal

Adding personal insights and experiences into your blog will help it to stand out.

If you’re posting about changes in your industry or growing trends, how is your business preparing for the changes? What trends do you expect to come next?

Provide value for readers

Don’t be tempted to create a blog that’s another place for press releases or obvious advertising. Readers know when they’re being advertised to, so avoid attempting to hard sell.

To keep people coming back, think of ways you can provide value. If your blog is about a great team-building day, why not include the list of exercises you followed? If an internal project management tool is working wonders, write a review of it.

By including helpful links and tips, you’ll position your blog as a valuable resource for others in the.

Be consistent

Try to stick to a rough schedule with your blog posts, rather than posting ad-hoc. If you have a set schedule, staff will know in advance when each post needs to go live and the marketing they’ll need to do.

Deciding how regularly to post tends to be a case of trial and error. Post too often and other work projects might suffer; posts that are too infrequent will cause any regular followers to lose interest. Generally, a post every two weeks works well.

Stay committed

The buzz around starting something new can wear off quickly, particularly when you find yourself juggling a number of different projects. But once you launch a company blog, try to stay committed to posting. Having an area of your site that’s “dead” looks unprofessional.

If you find yourself struggling to maintain your blog, make your blogs shorter. Not every post has to meet the thousand-word mark – in fact, snappier posts are usually easier for users to read. If you’re unpicking a complex topic, try breaking it up into four or five separate posts.

It can also help to share the writing duties. Unless it’s a specific part of someone’s job role, company blogs rarely survive when it’s one person’s responsibility. Rotate the blog-writing duty around teams. It can be interesting to have different voices and perspectives. Just make sure each blog post is edited and checked for tone and consistency before it goes live.

Focus on the long-term impact

So you’ve identified your goals and created a blog that’s full of insightful, relevant information for customers. And it gets – 40 reads.

We’ve all been there. It’s frustrating to not see an immediate return for your effort, but like most things in business, it takes time and testing to get it right.

Keep track of the posts that attract the most readers and continue to evolve your strategy. By investing the time into trying different topics and refining the content, your company blog can become one of your most effective marketing tools.

Getting started with a company blog

A company blog can help you drive traffic to your website, establish your expertise and reinforce your brand identity.

A blog can become a valuable marketing channel for any business. Like any other marketing activity, you need to set goals to ensure it contributes to the growth of your business.

Common goals:

  • To reinforce your position as experts and leaders in your market
  • To showcase your culture and attract the best talent
  • To add personality to your business and build your brand identity

Key points to remember:

  • Blogs are the first step in a much longer process – don’t expect to immediately convert visitors into customers
  • Your blog is another voice for your business, so make sure it aligns with your brand
  • It can take time to get it right. Be prepared to test and evolve your blog over time

Dos and don’ts for your company blog

Do make the content personal. Adding personal insights and comments into your blog will help it to stand out

Do think of ways to provide value. Think about processes, recommendations or resources you could include. By including helpful links and tips, you can position your blog as a valuable resource

Do stick to a schedule for your posts. That way, staff know when each post needs to go live and they can put time into marketing it

Do break up longer blogs into a series of different posts. Shorter posts are easier to read and you won’t end up rushing your post to meet the schedule

Do include a lead magnet in your call to action. If a reader is engaging with your content, make sure you don’t lose them. Include lead-capturing call to actions to give your sales team the chance to convert them into a customer. Remember, you need to meet certain regulations when handling personal data and ensure all of your efforts are GDPR compliant.

X Don’t try the hard sell. Using your blog as another place for press releases or blatant advertising can alienate readers

X Don’t neglect your blog. Having a dead area of the site can damage your credibility. Make sure you’re posting regular updates

Your company blog can become an effective way to reach and connect with new customers. Value this connection – it could ultimately be what sets your business apart from the competition.

 

 

This article was written and originally published by The Productivity Group (trading as Be the Business). Be the Business is an independent, not for profit organisation set up to help business owners and leaders improve the performance of their business. © Copyright 2021 The Productivity Group.  All rights reserved.

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