The secret to content marketing is not about hunting down your ideal client. It’s about getting them to find you. Standing out and being recognised in your community as THE expert in your field is an essential ingredient in a competitive market. And by starting a blog you will be in the select 1% club.
You see, according to the Huffington Post, only 1% of internet users actively create new content, while the other 99% view it. Blogging separates you from the 99%. And, since each blog is a page on your website, it provides more opportunities for your business to be found online and viewed by potential customers - giving you the edge on your competitors.
When combined with social marketing and automated emails, blogging attracts the right traffic to your website, which results in a higher rate of leads and paying customers.
So how do you go about writing a blog?
Tip #1: Discover what drives your customers
Work out what causes your prospects to take action. How? Talk to your current clients and/or ideal customer in person or over the phone to find out their wants, needs and fears in relation to your product or service. Ask current clients how they found your business and what words they used in the internet search.
When you have pinpointed their emotional motivators, create a list of blog topics. Then you will be able to address their objections and fears and explain how your product or service will benefit them.
Tip #2: Analyse your competitors
Check out your competitors’ websites. See if they are writing blogs. If so, look at the content. Are they on topic? Would their blogs resonate with your customers? Do any of their themes give you ideas for a blog? If you can improve on these topics or address them better, add them to your list.
Tip #3: Write like you talk
Communicate with your audience as individuals by writing in a conversational, friendly and upbeat manner. When you use common, everyday language you words will sound more natural and authentic to your audience, rather than sounding like a text book. It also makes your blog easier to read. And unless you are talking to experts in your field, avoid using technical terms and jargon.
Tip #4: Use short sentences
Keep in mind that reading from a screen is harder than reading from a book, so break large bodies of copy into bite-sized, digestible pieces. Use short sentences and start a new sentence for each new idea. Limit each paragraph to around three sentences. And use meaningful subheadings and images to help break up content and make your blog easier to scan and read.
Tip #5: Educate and build trust
Blogs should be relevant, educational and engaging. They are not a direct sales tool. The goal of a blog is to pique your ideal client’s interest. Educate them. And build trust. Communicate how you understand their unique world and real-life concerns.
Tip #6: How to tell prospects you can solve their problem when they don’t know they’ve gone one
Many of your ideal customers may not even realise they have a problem, let alone want a solution. If so, ask a set of questions to get them thinking, or humanise your blog with storytelling. Weave a real life story from a case study into your blog to show people you understand their circumstances and how you can solve their problem.
Tip #7: Find suitable SEO keywords
Before you start writing, you need to decide on what SEO (search engine optimised) keywords you’ll use. Why? SEO helps search engines like Google find your content. Use online tools such as Google Adwords to help you find suitable and sought-after SEO keyword phrases. Alternatively, type your topic into Google using a using a few different phrases and see what results it spits out. Then remember to use your keyword phrase in the heading, one subheading, content, alt tags and meta descriptions (the content that appears on search engine results pages, or SERPs).
Tip #8: Practise, practise, practise
Your copy should flow easily and sound natural and authentic. If people have to pause to work out your meaning because of the way you’ve phrased your information, they’ll leave your site and look at a competitor’s. You also need to weave into your content your SEO keyword phrase (see tip #7) so it doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb. The solution is to practice writing. Get in the habit of writing something every day until you feel you can write like you speak. Alternatively, get someone who is practiced at writing blogs to do it for you.
Tip #9: The big picture
Attracting organic traffic to your website and generating blog momentum takes time and commitment. Blogging is not a quick fix. It is a big picture approach that can continue to generate leads for your business in the future when combined with social media marketing. So the sooner you start, the sooner prospects will be knocking on your virtual door.
Don’t have the time to put this process into action? Haven’t got the inspiration to engage your audience? Then let me help.
My name is Diane Godley. I am a seasoned communications professional with a strong track record in generating easy-to-read content in both print and digital media.
I am a consummate storyteller. I craft content that educates, informs and entertains. I write blogs that discuss new ideas, introduce readers to new innovations, and keep them abreast with current industry news.
If you are feeling overwhelmed and daunted about writing a blog, then contact me.
Here to help.
Diane Godley | The Content Scribe
Copywriter | blogger | website writer