There is a great article about digital strategy in The Globe and Mail.
The article – All that blogging, tweeting can pay off – discusses how one small business in Canada has grown by focusing on different digital areas including business blogging. It’s worth five minutes to read the entire article.
For this post I wanted to provide a little more insight into the featured company from the article: First Foundation.
The First Foundation Business Blogging Strategy
Obviously a lot goes into a blogging strategy. With First Foundation it really is an entire digital strategy that revolves around the company’s website.
If you think back to 2007-2008 the market for insurance and mortgage brokerage was really on the brink. In fact, for the last few years the market has gone flat, yet First Foundation has been able to grow by over 40% according to the article.
That’s pretty incredible and the CEO credits the company’s digital strategy, which includes a business blog.
Here are a few points on their strategy including takeaways you should be able to use in your own business blogging strategy.
The quote in the article says that there are over 700 pages of blog content that have been created. This took about four to five years to create. Looking at the First Foundation Blog it actually looks like they don’t blog all that often. There are anywhere between 2-5 or so posts per month. That’s just a basic observation and I’m sure some months vary more than others.
The point is that it takes time to create hundreds of posts and pages. What is necessary is a commitment to blogging and that requires you to blog consistently for the long-term. If you start to slip with your schedule you’re really at risk of having your blog with nothing on it for months or even years. That situation is not helping your business.
Create a blogging schedule complete with ideas. Don’t miss a day. Force yourself to create content. It won’t be perfect all the time, but if you remain committed you’ll look back in a few years and realize you have tons of content.
Create Useful Content, But Add Personality
There is a great quote from the article:
But in the past five years, Mr. McCallum and his staff have also honed their skills at blogging, tweeting and posting pithy comments about topics that range from bond yields and fixed-rate mortgages to McHappy Days at McDonald’s.
That last part is great. The company is creating all types of content that includes helpful information about bond yields all the way to personal content like McHappy Days.
Personality is such an important part of blogging. Nearly all successful blogs have a voice or personality. People connect with people so it’s important to make sure you inject some of your company voice into the blog. You don’t have to write about McHappy Days, but try to work in stories about the company so people get a chance to learn about you.
Focus on Customer Questions Instead of Keywords
Taking a quick look at the First Foundation Blog will give you an idea of what they focus on for blog topics. The focus is on issues customers have instead of popular keyword phrases. I believe this is the best long-term strategy for a business blog. There will be times when a keyword and a customer question intersect, but if you focus on the questions your target customers have you’ll be giving them targeted information they want and you’ll be hitting on a ton of great long tail keywords that bring you traffic that converts.
I love reading stories about businesses – big and small – that are succeeding with blogging. First Foundation has been able to see growth in an industry where growth has been scarce in the last five years. It’s great to see that blogging played a role in that growth.
It can work for your company too.