So your company has finally seen the light and stuck a toe in social media waters by launching a blog. Welcome to the party! It’s a terrific way to market what your company does well, connect with like-minded people (customers), support search engine optimization (SEO), and establish it as a subject matter expert standing head-and-shoulders above the crowd.
Many businesses new to blogging believe that creating captivating content and posting it on a content management system are the two most important steps to take.
However, there’s a third step that many neglect: How to promote your blog! The greatest blog content in the world does your business — plus all of those customers you want to attract — no good if they can’t find it.
What follows are some easy ways to promote your blog. Some are so easy, you’ll wonder why you hadn’t thought for them before. Rather than exhaust your patience with too many to-dos in one sitting, however, this serves as the first in a series of posts about how to promote a blog.
1. Have you pinged your blog lately? Sending a ping means notifying multiple search engines that the blog site you worked so hard to populate with new material has been updated. Ping-O-Matic, part of WordPress, can auto-ping the 15 most common services from Feed Burner to Google Blog Search for free in seconds.
2. Talking about WordPress, are you using the tools and plugins available for this platform to boost your blog post’s SEO? This how-to on WordPress SEO created by Yoast is always updated and is a must-read.
3. Are you sharing your blog posts on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn every day? A 2013 Stanford University study concluded social media users consistently underestimated audience size for their Facebook posts by nearly 75 percent.
4. Have you extended your company’s reach beyond that blog post by commenting on other similarly themed blogs and looking for guest-blogging opportunities? Of course, this means spending time doing research to find the leaders in your industry and connecting with them to build authority. (Don’t have time for research? More businesses across a spectrum of industries use esd & associates to help them better connect with their customers.)
5. Have you included all of the must-have social media icons — Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest — below the comment field, so that readers can respond to your message and share it with their colleagues and friends? Probably… but we’re afraid you still haven’t included an RSS feed button in an eye-grabbing spot so that people can subscribe to future blogs your new reader of choice now that Google Reader has bit the dust.
6. Did you enable the comment field below each blog post in your layout? Leaving out that all-important comment feature is like telling future customers you’re only interested in one-way communication. You’d rather sell to your customers than build relationships with them.