6 Big mistakes you need to be aware of
You have a business website all ready to go, and you’ve been thinking of adding a blog. You’ve heard that business blogging is a great way to connect with your customers, bring traffic to your site, and promote your business to new prospects so you’re giving this some serious consideration.
All you need to do is write posts, then publicize them on a regular basis. These days, most website designs can accommodate your blog page, or you can use a blog platform to make it incredibly easy. But before you get started, here are 8 common business blogging mistakes that you need to avoid.
#1. Your design or layout sucks
No matter how valuable the information is that you’re offering, if your site looks unprofessional or confusing, nobody will read it. This is also the case if it clashes with your target market. For example, you've got a blog on money management that's all fun and drama. Those colours. Do they say "we're serious about helping you manage your money?" – Be aware of possible design fail!
Look at other websites and blogs in your niche to get ideas. Look at the colours and design features that they use. Use the type of design that your readers will expect to see.
#2. Making your blog the “Main thing”
Your business blog should accompany your website. It shouldn't be the centerpiece. Always keep in mind the purpose of the blog – to draw traffic and to show your expertise in your niche. Don't get carried away and turn your entire site into a blog.
#3. Straying from the point
Lots of business blogs fail because they forget what they're there for and stray into irrelevant topics. Stay focused on your goal and your readers. Make sure that the voice and message are consistent and that everything you write is valuable to your specific customers.
#4. Neglecting your blog
Your blog is an important part of customer relationship management. Don't start it up and then abandon your readers. Make sure that you're committed to updating it and keeping it going for the long-term.
#5. Making it all about Me, Me, Me
While you want to keep your blog relevant to your business, you don't want it to be all about you. Put yourself in your readers' shoes. Would you want to read a blog that's nothing but self-promotion? Your readers come to you for relevant information, tips, advice, news about your industry, and maybe even a little entertainment. Don't make it all about YOU.
#6. Not telling Everybody
When you run a business blog, you need to promote it. You must use every channel available to tell people about what they'll find there. This means optimizing it for search engines, announcing new posts on social media sites, connecting with other bloggers, and telling offline customers to check it out.
Here's two bonus mistakes
BONUS #1. Leaving your readers stranded
At the end of each blog post should be a clear call to action. Tell them what they need to do with the information you've given them. You could outline specific action steps that will help them, ask them to sign up for your newsletter, or urge them to contact your business about their challenges. The call to action could even be as simple as asking them to share the post. The last thing you should do is to leave them stranded.
BONUS #2. Ignoring comments
A blog isn't just a static website. It's a dialogue between you and your customers. Comments make it interactive. When your customers leave a comment, you should be there to reply. This shows the human side of your business. It brands you as a friendly expert and builds trust.
Now you've got your business blog going, don’t hesitate to outsource the writing if you don't have enough time or energy to do it yourself. Find a ghostwriter you can trust, either locally or online and give them topics to write about. Make sure you pay attention to their work so that it keeps a consistent tone. Don’t wait until you get busy or burned out before you make some decisions about your blog, it helps to hire someone else with fresh ideas.
You don’t have to make these everyday business blogging mistakes. When you keep your business vision in mind, and plan how your blog fits into that picture you’ll have all you need to make this important piece into something valuable to your visitors.