By now, just about every small business owner has been told about the benefits of blogging. You probably already know that consistently blogging can grow your online presence, bring you more website traffic and help build trust with potential new customers. And while that all sounds great, the truth is unlocking all these great benefits takes a lot of time, effort, and know-how.
It will be up to you to put in the time and effort to make your blog viable. Where we can help out is with some of the know-how. Below, we’ve included a list of five small business marketing tips that will make your blog posts and your business more attractive to prospective customers.
Tip #1- Create Enticing Headlines
Unfortunately, if the titles of your blog posts are too boring or too confusing, whatever you write inside the blog post will become pretty much meaningless. You can’t win over new customers with your content, if they don’t actually click to see it. So before hitting the publish button on any new post, you need to make sure you have a headline that will actually get clicks.
Coming up with a quality headline can be a challenging task, but a good place to start is by clearly stating what the post is about. Make sure your headline reflects the content that is waiting for the reader inside. If you make a promise in your title, and don’t deliver on it, you’ll quickly frustrate your new leads and lose their trust.
You’ll also want to add certain buzz-generating words to your headlines to help create excitement for your blog posts. On marketing expert Neil Patel’s list of “trigger words” are free, new, proven, easy, secret, more, never, imagine and instant. Adding just one “trigger word” to your headline really can make a world of difference. For example, “Three Proven Ways To Keep Your Lawn Green This Summer” sounds a lot more click-worthy than “Three Ways To Keep Your Lawn Green This Summer”.
If you’re really struggling to come up with a good title for your blog post, consider the main question your post is answering, and use that as your headline. An example of this would be “Why Isn’t The AC In My Car Working?”.
Tip #2: Focus On Things Your Customers Want To Know
This next piece of advice may sound extremely obvious, but it’s something that a lot of bloggers seems to forget. When coming up with new ideas, remember that your company’s blog posts aren’t for you, they’re for your customers. While it’s nice when you get the chance to write about stuff that interests you, the main goal of your blog posts should be to provide new prospects with content they’ll want to read.
Often your customers will be your best source for new blog post ideas. If your business is getting the same questions over and over again from customers, consider answering that question in blog post form. Chances are the people visiting your website will have a similar question in mind when learning about your business. For example, if customers always ask an HVAC business for AC unit recommendations, they could create a blog post entitled, “The Five Best AC Units On The Market Today”.
Of course few things will spark more interest from your customers than writing about problems they may be currently facing. Doing so gives you a chance to explain to customers how their problems can be solved, and the impact a professional team like yours can make. Don’t worry about giving away free advice in your blog post. If the advice you give you proves to be valuable, readers will almost always contact your business for further help.
Tip #3: Address Relevant News Stories
There’s no escaping the news these days, and when a newsworthy event impacts your field of work, blogging about it can be extremely valuable. Addressing things that are happening in the real world can make your company’s blog writing feel more relevant to readers, and allow you to share important messages with prospective customers with the support of real life examples and information. Incorporating the news into your blogging efforts has been particularly important for companies during the COVID-19 pandemic, as the coronavirus has impacted just about everything businesses do.
When addressing the news in your blog posts, you’ll want to do more than just pass along information. That alone doesn’t really provide the reader with any value, as they can get that information from other sources. Your job will be to take a news story and explain how it affects your industry, and more importantly, your customers’ lives. For example, a cleaning service may want to write about the challenges reopening businesses face in creating a safe working environment for their employees, and how they could benefit from professional cleaning assistance during the pandemic.
If you are going to discuss important news topics in your blog, doing so with a high level of accuracy is a must. Passing along inaccurate or misguided information is not only irresponsible, but will result in potential customers feeling like they can’t trust you. Take the time to do proper research and always share your sources of information. Oh and make sure any news that you do share is coming from a trustworthy source.
Tip #4: Create Lists
People love seeing things in list form, and lists certainly can make blog posts a lot easier to digest and follow. Don’t believe us? Well if you’ve made it this far in our listicle blog post, you’ve kind of already proved our point. When you share a list on your blog, you immediately get people’s minds engaged. Readers will start to speculate on what will be on your list, and what would be on their list if they made one, even before starting your post.
Here are a few good examples of lists you can create:
- The Five Best Dog Grooming Brushes Available On Amazon
- Five Signs You Need Your Boiler Replaced
- Five Things To Look For When Buying A Used Car
- Five Mistakes People Make When Buying Their First Home
- Five Reasons You Shouldn’t Put Off Teeth Cleaning Appointments
In these posts, you can find creative ways to tie in your business. In the example of “Five Best Dog Grooming Brushes”, you can end your post by saying, “while brushing your pet’s fur at home throughout the year is important, you’ll still want to bring them in semi-annually for professional grooming treatment”. You can also add bonus tips in the middle of the list, such as “remember to have your boiler serviced every 12 months by a professional heating service in order to ensure it stays running efficiently and safely”.
Tip #5: Feature Real Customers Stories
While giving your customers lots of information is certainly valuable, it will only go so far in getting them to trust you. At some point during the process of researching your company online, prospects will seek further opinions from their peers. These peers are otherwise known as your former and current customers.
One of the best things you can do on your blog to let new prospects know that your business can be trusted, is share customer success stories. By letting your former customers do the talking for your company, you’re not just telling new leads you can solve their problems, but actually showing them that your team is capable of helping people in their position. It’s also a great way to give people an inside look at your process, and makes reaching out to your business seem a bit less daunting.
Putting a customer success story is a pretty easy process. Just set up a call with a former customer with whom you’ve had a positive experience, and ask them about their journey with your business. Ask them questions on every part of the process, from why they initially reached out to you, to the end results your team was able to provide for them. To take things to another level, interview your former customer over Zoom, and record it. You can then include that video in your blog post to make it even more engaging.