Just like a shop window, your company’s website is typically the simplest and most effective tool for drawing in new sales and new enquiries.
But getting your website noticed is a fine art and, once a site is up and running, it can quickly become static and uninteresting with nothing new to draw in visitors and get to the top of search results.
Sure, advertising, especially pay-per-click advertising through search engines or social media, can work wonders in bringing people in…. And securing coverage and backlinks on good third-party websites is critical to boosting search rankings, but there are other, more subtle ways of keeping your site tip top.
One of these is the humble company blog or news section.
With some regular, good quality, relevant and informative blog posts, you can help to boost your search visibility, attract your target audience and build a reader’s confidence in you and your expertise.
This may lead to them reading more about you on other pages of your site or even getting in touch to see how you can help them. You can use your posts to create social media content which will direct more people to your site, and it might gain the interest of a journalist, leading to some more great coverage.
But what should you write about?
Company news is always a great thing to share. New hires, new investments, changes in the office or new ventures are a great thing to shout about, and your company’s blog is a great place to do it.
But what about if you don’t have any news to share?
Well, before we go any further, let me stop you: Every company has news to share. It’s just that, being in the business day-to-day, you’re probably blind to it and you don’t realise that it’s interesting. I’ve been in countless conversations with business leaders during my career as a journalist and as a PR in which some great stories have emerged; most of which were things the other person never thought worth sharing.
But even if it really has been a slow few months and you are scraping the barrel, you could always comment on industry trends, reflect on past glories or give insight into the work you do.
The whole point is to show visitors that you really do know what you’re talking about with content that demonstrates your skills, showcases your brand’s voice and personality and, crucially, content that makes them more inclined to work with you.
A great place to start is the humble ‘how to’ blog which explains something you’re good at in a way that’s accessible to your target audience.
In this case, let’s say we’re a PR and digital marketing agency which is really good at writing corporate blogs and we’d like to target business owners who want to find a cost-effective way of increasing website traffic as a way to increase sales and enquiries. So our challenge is to write a great blog post which would make these people go; “Hey, these people seem good, maybe they could help me!”
You should start your blog with a nice introduction which explains in very simple terms, what your blog post is all about and what readers will get from it. This should also lead people on to reading the rest of the post.
Oh, and remember to follow this up with a big SEO-friendly subheading to break up the text. Ready?
How to write a simple blog
Leaning on the principles of content marketing; the aim of a how-to blog is to appear helpful and approachable while also demonstrating your expertise or your USP.
If your company sells a product, you might wish to tell people how to use it in a new or unusual way. If you provide a service, you can demonstrate the basic steps and principles behind those services or show them how to do something simple for themselves…. such as blog writing.
This may seem a little unsettling: After all, if you’re good at something, you shouldn’t do it for free and you don’t want to show your customers how to do everything for themselves, right?
Well, actually you should have a bit of confidence. Yes, once you’ve read this blog, you could almost certainly write some decent posts yourself, but if you want to do more than the basics or if you don’t have the time to do it yourself, you might want some professional help. And, who better to ask than yours truly?
So that’s the basic principle behind a how-to blog. Now it’s time for another sub-heading, and maybe another picture to break up the text before we move on…
The basics of corporate blogging
So far, so simple! In a few short paragraphs, you can write a perfectly readable blog that goes some way toward achieving your objectives.
But, as I explained above, readers might want more than just a basic grasp of a topic and you want to demonstrate your expertise and the full benefits of the service you offer.
One trick to doing this is to have your blog ease its way into the more complicated elements; luring in readers at the start into thinking it’s all straightforward, before you lay on extra information which – while always helpful – makes it clear that a level of expertise is required to do good job.
Having read partway through the blog, your readers might be feeling a little buoyant and perhaps a little grateful for the ideas you’ve shared so far, but then you have the opportunity to crank it up a bit by delving into the more advanced, technical, time-consuming stuff which can make a big difference.
The point of this is to underline the fact that while you could do everything yourself, you’d actually be better off getting a professional to do it for you. And… who better than the nice people who’ve already won your trust and who can be contacted at a click of the button?
The increasingly complicated process of corporate blogging
While luring people onto your website was your first objective, if you want to make your blog reach its full potential, you want to make sure it stands out on search engines and helps your business stand out too.
Regular, basic blogging can help with this because, in principle, a website that’s regularly updated, which secures a high number of visitors and where those visitors stay on the site to visit multiple pages, will gradually move up search rankings.
You can find out how strong your website is by checking the URL through a service like Moz which will show your site’s domain rating and allow you to compare your site’s performance to your competitors. Other services like AHRefs can even calculate website rankings for a variety of search terms.
One of the most useful services to help your blog writing is keyword analysis. Through services like these, you can view the relevant keywords and phrases you can target to try to capture more search traffic. By looking into these, you can plan your blog content accordingly. You can choose between targeting phrases which are more commonly searched, or the terms which will be easier for you to target , or a combination of the two.
For example, if you spot ‘how to write a company blog’ as a potential target, then you write a blog on that subject. Hey presto!
You can also view lots of information about who’s visiting your site, how they’re accessing it and what they do when visiting through Google Analytics. You can then use all of this and you can use this to guide the content you write in future.
It’s likely that you don’t have all of these tools at your disposal, and some require a subscription which might put you off. Luckily, an experienced digital PR agency should have these subscriptions set up and we can use these to help you.
Ok. That all sounded a bit complicated didn’t it. But don’t worry, this how-to guide is still going and if you read on, there might be something else that you can do yourself. Maybe it’s about to get more straightforward in the next section….
The really complicated process of corporate blogging
Oh, ok. This bit isn’t any more straightforward.
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a complicated business, but there are some simple steps to bear in mind.
Firstly, there’s the way you write and the language you use in your blog. Although you and your target audience might be quite clever, you should aim to keep your copy simple. This means using shorter, more common words instead of long ones. It also means keeping sentences and paragraphs short and also using active, rather than passive voice.
You should aim to break up text with an image or a subheading every 300 words, include internal and outbound links and be sure to mention your keyword or keyphrase in your company blog as much as possible (but not too much). You should also add alt text to all of your images – and don’t forget your metadescription, title and url which should also include your keyword.
If you’re using WordPress, you can often check your work by viewing the Yoast SEO plugin at the bottom of the edit page. You can also edit your text using programmes like hemmingwayapp.com which gives a really critical eye over your writing.
Contact us for help with corporate blogging
Phew! We’ve covered a lot of ground here, and chances are, you’ve come to the realisation that, while basic blogging is easy, there’s a lot to master.
There’s really nothing wrong with just writing a simple, straightforward blog though and I would encourage every company to write as regularly as possible. Even if it’s just once per month, you’ll be going in the right direction. But if you want to maximise the potential of your blog or news section, you now know how to do it…. or you can contact us for help.
After all, recent research suggests that 70% of consumers learn about a company through their blog rather than ads and 60% of users feel more positive about a brand after consuming content from it. (source)
Meanwhile, B2B marketers that use blogs get 67% more leads than those that don’t (source) and companies that blogged 11+ times per month have almost three times more traffic than those blogging 0-1 times per month. (source)
And finally, just as you should, I’ll wrap up this blog with a clear call to action:
If you’d like help with writing great blog content for your website, contact our team of experts who’ll be happy to help.