Blogging has remained an important part of most business and corporate social media platforms since the use of blogs started to gain in popularity in the early 2000s. It is hard to imagine that blogging is 20 plus years old, because the medium seems to be stronger than ever.
Part of what makes blogging work is that blogs are a part of the social media or digital marketing plan. The most read blogs have their web addresses and links included in other social media marketing such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and many others.
Another reason they have gained in popularity over the years is because of the the topics included in the posts and the writing of the blog. The topics and the writing are more informational but fun, short and to the point and make for light reading.
It may often seem like blogs are written randomly or whenever a blogger gets a chance to write about a certain topic but they are most often planned, well thought out and implemented according to a schedule usually generated by the marketing, digital marketing or public relations departments.
Below are five tips to planning your company’s blog posts to achieve the ROI (return on investment).
Put the blog posts on the media calendar
Blog posts should be treated more as editorial versus advertorial– like writing a magazine versus writing advertising copy, but the blog posts can still follow an advertising calendar. For example, if a car dealer is going to have a special deal on tires the entire month of June, there can be several blog posts put up in May with topics like what makes one tire better than another, what does it mean when a tire company says the tire will last 50,000 miles and so on. Or how about a blog post on what to do with those old tires? The posts can be scheduled before or concurrent with the tire sale.
Determine the topics weeks or months ahead of the writing
Just like planning advertising or press releases, blog topics should be determined weeks or months in advance. Doing so will give the writer or writers time to do some research on the topic and find interesting ways to present the topic in the posts.
An example would be if the blogger is scheduled to write posts for an ice cream company and one of the topics is how ice creams are made in today’s world. The blogger needs some time to research the history of ice cream to find some interesting and fun facts. The research might even lead to multiple posts about one topic.
Performing this step can also help keep marketing, public relations, social media and technology departments current with the posts schedule. It can also direct the schedule of any professional photography needed.
Determine and plan the blog post collaboratively
While bloggers may spend the time writing alone at their computer, planning the posts should include marketing and public relations people as well as topic experts. Get as much input from as many people as possible. The topic experts are the people who will provide the blogger with the best quotes and the best information to research. Marketing or advertising people in the company can provide a lot of creative ideas to make the posts pop. Getting social media managers and the technology people involved can lead to helping determine the best search engine friendly words to use.
Be flexible with the blog post schedule
Putting the posts on the media schedule is a must do to get the most out of your company’s blogging efforts. But there needs to be some flexibility in the schedule for posts about new product research, new employees, new events and other items that pop up throughout the year.
Put tracking in place to analyze what works and what doesn’t work
Monitor blog posts like you would any other social media used by the company. First, determine which blogs got some of the biggest attention and which posts just kind of laid around and went flat. Second, determine why some posts worked and others didn’t. Determine if it was the keywords, the topic, the writing style, etc. that made the posts work.
Keeping readers interested
Blogging is an effective way to address clients and potential clients. It’s also a way to show social media followers a company’s expertise and to give readers something informative, fun and interesting to read. Make no mistake, blogging is like most other types of communications tools used by a company– the posts need to be planned in advance and made relative to what is happening in a company.
Putting them on the media calendar can help achieve the needed planning and help generate the best results.