No marketing strategy is complete without the one element that accelerates viewer traffic and creates a competitive edge: the blog. Those who forgo this invaluable lead-generation tool are missing a golden opportunity for higher conversions and greater ROI. And the key word: visibility. What better way to communicate vision and streamline brand identity than with a blog?
Of course successful blogging requires more than spitting out 500 words every couple of weeks; it’s a full-time job unto itself. The perfect blog is an ideal, one whose requirements shift with trends and demographics. That said, here’s a list of seven strategies that can help you build the perfect blog for your business right now.
1. Blog for the right audience
Know your audience. For instance, The Old School Game Vault, a business that sells both retro and current video games (which is part of a larger, $200-million-a-year industry), has a blog that includes game reviews. This is the sort of content your blog should contain: posts relevant to your target audience.
2. Set clear objectives
Always set clear blogging objectives that define your business and what it wants to accomplish. This prevents you veering off topic and cluttering blog posts with unnecessary content. And above all else set realistic goals. Also, determine future content strategies by looking at past metrics that indicate success, like social media shares and comments.
3. Develop a content strategy
A viable content strategy handles the entire lifecycle of the material, from creation to maintenance to removal. Know what your blog reader wants, and don’t be afraid to expand.
For example, CreditRepair.com, one of the premier credit repair informational sites online, has used their blog to highlight some credit repair issues their predominantly millennial audience is interested in today, such as poverty level and geo-location’s effect on national credit scores.
Another prime example of content strategy is the golf tournament organizing blog found on BestOutings.com. Their blog is dedicated to providing useful information to its readers who are planning their next charity golf outing. From useful tips to tournament organizing software, this blog has everything.
4. Follow a blogging schedule (but don’t be afraid to improvise)
Consistency is paramount here. Blogging once every week or two is akin to not blogging at all. It’s simple math: the more you post, the more successful your blog will be. Blogging at least once a day is ideal. And if you have a great idea for a post, put it up immediately. Don’t delay because of the schedule. Attend to all the queries and comments, too.
5. Have a content promotion strategy
Your content should have quotes, snippets for sharing on social networks and links to authoritative sources, as this kind of modern optimization reels in lots of traffic. Definitely don’t overlook one of the three pillars of modern marketing: social media. There’s no overstating how a successful hashtag campaign can help a business or company reach stratospheric heights.
6. Your blog needs personality
On top of being honest and informative, your blog should be personality driven. Readers like putting a face to the enterprise. Even top brass are getting in on the act, as CEOs are having success writing for their corporate blogs.
7. Have action-driven content
A successful blog is not esoteric ramblings on the nature of life—it’s a focused message delivered to a target audience. Make sure every blog post has an actionable point, and make sure that point is in the headline. Establish it in the opening paragraph and support it in the body text. Clear, concise and cogent always wins the day.
These are sound blogging principals any business should take to heart. Applied correctly they are a springboard for greater visibility and higher conversions. Ignore them, and you do so at your peril.
This post originally appeared on Forbes