Unbelievably, most SMEs make the same mistake with their business blog.
They don’t mean to of course, but they do, so I am here to tell you how you can get around it and make sure you don’t fall into the same trap.
They start off really well
When we start our businesses we all have good intentions.
We set up the website and work with a designer to make sure it looks great
We provide loads of copy and make sure we know how to handle the posting method
And then we write a few blogs and put them on our site and then one of two things happen
We get dispirited
We check out our analytics (because we’ve installed Google analytics console) and it’s disappointing.
Google has spotted us and gone ‘meh’
We don’t rank highly and our website isn’t driving traffic so we decide to put our effort into something else that might do better.
We get busy
Which is great right?
Our business takes off and the orders are flying in
Suddenly the blog doesn’t seem so important and anyway business is great so we don’t need to drive traffic.
So we stop blogging.
Both completely understandable
And both mind-numbingly dumb. (people just don’t speak like that to potential customers do they? Maybe they should)
I can talk like this because I’ve done exactly the same thing with my business in the past (not this one obvs because this one is epic.)
I did this with my consultancy business Isango8. You can check out my desultory effort here http://www.isango8.co.uk
I started out with good intentions, got bored, got busy and stopped blogging.
Before long the only people visiting my site were girls from Russia who really wanted to be my friend and guys from Nigeria who had just been left elevntybillion dollars by their uncle – if only they could get it out of the country…
Blogs only work if they are active
Google knows full well what people do – because we all do the same things so it penalises sites that aren’t active.
What search engines want is to serve up useful, relevant and up to date information, not something you wrote late one night in 2016 in a fit of guilt.
The trick is to post little and often
If you do loads all at once then you get pretty bored with the process pretty quickly and it becomes this thing that you have to do rather than something you want to do.
Write about things that have happened, the latest industry news, something your business has done or even opinion pieces if you really must.
They don’t have to be hugely long, after all, no one wants to read war and peace but they should be relevant and to the point.
What will happen if I do this Stu?
OK so if I had my salesman’s hat on (did I tell you I write blogs for small businesses?) then I’d tell you that all of a sudden you’d get loads of sales from it.
But you won’t.
What will happen, especially if you promote it properly is that you’ll get a bunch of hits on the first day, then it will start to tail off and you’ll probably only get one hit per day per blog.
Google will still be saying ‘meh’ and you won’t be making any sales.
But you carry on doing one, maybe two pieces a week.
After ten weeks you have perhaps 15 blog posts on your site.
Each one of them is only getting one hit a day.
But that adds up to 15 hits per day
And now Google is saying ‘Hmmmm’.
You’re still not at the top of the rankings but you’re moving.
This is the point that most businesses give up
So you carry on.
In another couple of months you are getting 30 hits a day from your old content and if you are lucky one strikes a real chord and it drags in 10 people per day.
Then something unexpected happens.
You’re at a networking event and someone says ‘I saw that post you put up about how to fix a leaky tap and it worked….could you come round and quote on a new boiler?’.
You write more posts and suddenly Google thinks – ‘this guy knows about leaky taps’
And more people speak to you at networking events and people fill in your contact form.
More useful is the thing you don’t see.
When you speak to people about doing work who you don’t know, they go on your site afterwards to check you out and guess what?
They find someone who clearly knows what they are talking about because they have a business blog full of useful information about plumbing or landscape gardening or wedding cakes or accountancy.
So you get the sale but you never really know why.
Stu, get real I just haven’t got the time to write a business blog for my company and anyway what’s this long-tail keyword thing?
Aha! what a great point!
Get someone to do it for you.
Me preferably, but if not then find someone who can commit to producing one business blog a week for the next 12 weeks say.
Make sure they know about ‘on-page SEO’ and all that stuff, and then forget about it.
At the end of the time take another look at your site.
It won’t be ranking like BBC.co.uk but it will be better and more important than all that ranking nonsense when a potential customer visits it will be looking more professional and you will look like you know what you are doing.
Even if you don’t
Which you do.
So here’s the ad
I do copywriting for small businesses.
I write blogs, articles, eBooks and all sorts of stuff.
I even know about long-tail keywords
You can get me to write the odd blog or we can set up a standing arrangement where I’ll do the keyword research for you, write the blogs and even post them directly to your site for you.
All you have to do is pay my very reasonable bill.
Seriously, you know you have to do it so why not give me a call and get the problem off your desk?
Oh and if you are wondering whether blog posts actually get read – well you’re here aren’t you?
If you want more advice on content marketing for your Small Business then check out some of my other posts here