7 strategies for publishing a successful small business blog

Creating a successful small business blog

I’ve featured small business blog advice on several topics over the years, such as:

Today, I want to look at your small business blog content from a more strategic point of view. When you get the bigger picture of what you want to accomplish with your blog, you’ll find that it can be liberating. It will make it easier for you to choose topics and even deal with the mechanics of writing.

1. Establish your unique voice. When a lifetime friend of yours calls, you recognize the voice right away, don’t you? For most small business blogs, you want to establish that same kind of familiarity with your readers.

When you start publishing a blog with the hopes that people will continually read it, you have to give them a reason to come back. If you set a poor tone, or are “all over the map” with your tone, it will be impossible to develop that relationship.

2. Inform and entertain. This relates to my first point. More people will love your small business blog if you entertain them while you’re providing them with valuable information. You don’t have to tap dance across their desks, but you must find interesting ways to deliver information.

One way to do this is to understand that not every post has to give readers the meaning of the universe. Lighter posts that share a valuable insight or two and deliver a smile along the way can keep your readers coming back for more.

3. Get real. Use your small business blog to make you and your business “real.” Let your readers see you sweat, laugh, succeed, and even fail. Doing this, by the way, helps achieve point number two above. Remember, the goal of this kind of content marketing is to build relationships. It’s impossible to build a relationship with someone who refuses to share personal thoughts and feelings.

4. Don’t try to sell too much. Ultimately, the purpose of your small business blog is to boost sales, but don’t look at every blog post as a sales piece. Doing that will short circuit your strategy to build relationships and establish a long-term, devoted readership.

5. Write for your audience. This is the primary rule of all writing, but with a small business blog, it gets a little more complicated because you want your audience to be the same people who are likely to do business with you.

Writing for CoSchedule, Ben Sailer offers a lot of information on how to find the target audience for your content marketing. If you haven’t explored this in depth, check out what he has to say.

6. Set goals. There are several different areas for goal setting and these should be both internal and external. Internally, you should have a goal for how frequently you commit to publishing. You should always hit that target! Externally, you will want to build your readership and perhaps track how often readers share an article you’ve written.

Measuring your small business blog against your goals can help keep you motivated and examining what works and what doesn’t. That will put you on the path of continual improvement.

7. Use visuals. I’ve been talking about the blog writing, but it’s important to understand that graphics are a critical component of successful blogs. These can be humorous if your article calls for that approach, or these can be charts and graphs, if you’re publishing a technically informative article. Never publish without at least one well-designed graphic.

I know that video and other forms of visual content are becoming increasingly important for content marketing, but I’m confident that a good small business blog will always occupy an important position in your website and small business promotion plans.