Starting a Company Blog That Gets Leads and Sales
Starting a company blog is no small undertaking.
Here are some interesting insights from HubSpot:
In a nutshell, making your blog a long-term asset by publishing a lot of content over time makes a big difference. This is evidenced by the fact that the average company with 100 or more total blog articles is more likely to experience continued lead growth, and even more compelling — companies with over 200 blog articles generate >5X the leads than those with 10 or fewer.
Check out that entire article. It’s packed with more stats that will have you really excited about business blogging.
There are two parts mentioned in the bit above that are important for anyone thinking about starting a company blog.
First, everyone is attracted to the prospect of more leads. That’s how businesses grow. You do whatever you can to get more customers. Blogging offers a great way to do that. There is a reason tons of companies are blogging.
But the second part of the equation is the work. This is where most businesses fail to understand the level of effort it takes to maintain a business blog.
Look around some of the sites that have a blog. Often you’ll see a few posts initially followed by some sporadic posting and then nothing. It’s the same story in many different industries.
It’s all about expectations. People underestimate the work and overestimate the initial return.
Let’s review the steps you can take to start your own company blog including setting the right expectations.
Step #1 – Definitions
The first step we take with new clients at GBW is to talk about the company, the industry and the ideal customer. This helps us figure out what the blog content should likely include. We combine this knowledge with our experience in blogging formats and research to create what we feel is the best content for the company blog.
We define the goals and the ideal reader and start producing content for that person.
Another definition for a blog is the expectation of success. It can take over a year (and sometimes more) to start seeing return from a business blog.
Think about it. If you’re creating one blog a week, which is great, you’re getting 50 posts a year. Remember that the HubSpot analysis showed that it takes about 100 or even 200 posts to really see the return and lead generation.
That’s a few years, but the catch is these posts work for you forever. Once you have them you’ll see continued return.
So you have to figure out if you’re ready for that kind of ROI and lead time.
Step #2 – Research
The next step is to do some research.
We take the information from step one and start working on the first 10 blog post ideas. We look at keywords the ideal reader is searching for on search engines like Google. We look at other blogs in the industry to see what their popular posts have been. We also try to find other blogs with established audiences that are similar to the new ideal audience we’ll be targeting because we’ll try to tap into those audiences in a few different ways.
This is another part of business blogging most companies don’t consider.
Step #3 – Writing
Once we have an editorial calendar full of ideas we get to work on the writing. We login, check the post and start writing. This includes formatting and scheduling. We like to schedule posts about 5-7 days in advance. This helps make sure you’re consistent with your publishing, which is more important than frequency.
Step #4 – Promotion
This is another area of business blogging often forgotten. Check out the five keys to successfully promoting a business blog for more insight.
There are some steps for starting a company blog. If you have questions feel free to contact us or leave a comment.