Blogging is such a simple yet powerful way to connect with your audience. A blog allows you to tell stories, share experiences, give information, add value and do so much more for your products and services. Today, building a strong and effective blog content strategy is one of the most critical aspects of your overall content marketing plan.
What started as an e-diary, or individuals talking about their personal opinions, ideas, and stories; has evolved into a much more focused effort by businesses and organizations to capture their audience’s attention and offer value through blogging.
At its core, blogging is a free medium to get higher search rankings and build credibility for your business. You may choose to promote your blogs via paid channels, but even without that, the right tools, strategies and content can help you grow a successful blog – it all starts with one thing; develop a content strategy for your blog.
How to create a blog strategy?
Before you can go on and develop a content strategy for your blog, think about the following questions:
- Who is my audience
- What is my audience going to get through my blog
- What value will my blog offer
- How often will I publish content on my blog
- What problem will my blog solve
Once you’ve thought these questions through, and are ready to start your blog, let’s move on and look at the steps to develop a content strategy for your blog.
7 Steps to Develop a Content Strategy for Your Blog
1. Understand Your Customers
The first and most crucial step to building a blog strategy that will get results is to understand your customers. This includes creating a customer persona, that is knowing the age group, gender, location, interests, culture, and everything else that your product/service is built for. Additionally, you need to spend some time and understand the customer lifecycle or buying journey. Typically, this includes different steps that a customer takes to ultimately buy, and repeat buy from a business. Awareness, research, selection, buying, satisfaction, retention, advocate are different steps that a customer takes throughout the buying journey.
Knowing your strong and weak points in this journey will help you know the crucial changes or additional steps you need to take to get and keep more customers. For example, if potential customers are researching but not buying your products, chances are you are not providing enough content that helps them make a buying decision. In this case, creating blogs that show how your products/services will add value to them will help them make a buying decision.
2. Keywords and Key Phrase Research
Keywords or key phrases are the words/phrases your audience is typing to find products/services you offer. For example, when I did a quick search before writing this blog, I discovered that the phrase ‘develop a content strategy for a blog’ was searched by many people, thus I picked this topic to write on. Why? Simple, when a person types this phrase this blog is likely to show up as a top result. I have used the phrase throughout the blog sparingly to rank higher for this phrase. Similarly, your industry and audience will have certain keywords and phrases that people will be typing in.
Do your research and use these well so your blog gets noticed. Also, this will help you come up with ideas for the topics you can write about. However, make sure that you don’t overdo it, or your content will appear spammy to search engines as well as your readers.
3. Build a Blog Calendar
When it comes to building a blog calendar, keep ‘Consistency’ in mind. You need to be consistent and regular and building a calendar helps you do just that. When you’re starting you could post one blog a week, say every Friday. Then as you have a clear idea as to what kind of content best works for you, you could ramp up the number of blogs you post.
Say, for example, every Friday you could continue to post a blog about keyword related topics, and every Wednesday you could share a customer story. Slowly but steadily, you can add more segments like reviews, infographics, step-by-step guides etc. and allocate specific days on the calendar for the same. This way you’ll know exactly what you need to post on a certain day, and you get enough time to build a compelling blog for that day.
4. Use Multiple Channels to Promote Your Blog
One way to get people to read your blog is through your website and hopefully, rank high on search engines. However, you could use multiple channels to promote your blog. Think about social media platforms, email marketing for your blog subscribers, groups and forums. This way you have a greater chance to get more and more readers to come to your blog, and eventually, convert them into customers. Additionally, this way you can drive more traffic to your website, thus increasing your chances to rank higher and present yourself as a credible website.
5. Use Audio-Visual Aids
A blog doesn’t only need to be words; in fact, try and supplement it with relevant images and videos wherever possible. This not only helps break the monotony for a reader but may even make it easier for them to understand your content better. Graphs, infographics, tutorial videos, and other audio-visual content add more value for a blog reader. Make sure every image or video you use is relevant to the blog and brings more value to it rather than being unnecessary and a force fit.
6. Create Error Free Content
While spelling mistakes and typos are errors, we may be focusing on, it’s also important to make sure the content is error-free. For example, if you are adding statistics or a quote by someone, double-check to make sure you’re putting the right things. Link to the source and always give credit to the source. Additionally, don’t make false claims or say things just because they sound ‘marketable’! Write facts, and link to facts wherever possible to build credibility.
7. Don’t Forget Your Brand Identity
Every brand has a unique identity, and your blog must capture the same. If you are a young brand for young readers, make sure your tone, language and voice resonate with them and your brand. If your brand identity is formal and professional – your blog must represent the same. A reader must be able to see your brand identity through every blog that you present. Before you start building your blog make sure you understand what your identity is and what’s the best way to represent that in your blogs.
Ready to develop a content strategy and let your blog do the talking?
Let’s get started! A blog allows you to do so much – showcase your brand identity, drive traffic, increase conversions, engage and communicate with your readers, share valuable information, and more! A strong content strategy for your blog will allow you to do more business while also building credibility for your business.
What are you waiting for? Let’s get to the drawing board and build out a strong, powerful and effective blog content strategy. If you are just starting your online journey, you can now build your WordPress website and easily plugin your WordPress blog. For more expert help and advice, check out the Blue Sky Service by Bluehost which helps you build, grow and maintain your website.
If you have any questions or ideas, please drop them in the comments section below. For more information on building your website, blogging, SEO and more, head to the Tutorials page.