How can writing help your business? - Part two
Follow me now as we transition from beginner to intermediate level of how writing can help your business - more specifically writing blog articles for your business’s website.
In part 1 I introduced you to blogging for your business explaining that it builds brand awareness and adds value. I discussed the role of a copywriter and shared examples of how blog articles can help businesses in the B2B or B2C world. We touched on SEO and looked at different options for content. Missed it? Here it is.
As we progress through this article I am going to talk about:
Content creation in depth - you need to know that quality content is king
What it looks like when putting a blog article on your website - you need to know images and videos are key
SEO very briefly - you need to know that fresh, valuable and relevant content helps search engines find you
Google indexing very briefly - you need to know that search engines such as Google send their spiders to crawl your website and see what new changes have happened and give them a quality score
Let’s start with my favourite topic - content creation…
I’ve been writing for businesses for over a decade now and I still get a buzz when I get a brief for some written content, it’s a bit like when I eat a piece of Costco carrot cake - it's the best feeling (I know, that's slightly over dramatic).
Sometimes business owners come to me and say I understand the value of blogging but I’m not sure what to write about. In part 1 I gave a list of suggestions for content ideas, take a step back in time if need be and go back to part 1 to recall the suggestions.
When it comes to creating content for your blog...
You need to know about copyright and plagiarism with regards to images, videos and written content. In a nutshell, don’t copy other people’s content word for word without permission. However, you can use an intro, like a couple of sentences of someone’s content but then put a link to the source.
Here is a little recipe to success when it comes to creating content for blog articles for your business. This is my first tip...
**Have a purpose, a goal, a strategy and create a schedule.**
Please note... Give search engines what they want and they will reward you in return, they want quality, relevant and useful content. Like most things, it does take time, the rewards aren’t instant with regards to your ranking on search engines.
You need to know and I'm sure you know already, you can’t be good or be an expert at everything. When you write content for your business blog you will need to do some research and if you have employees you should sometimes ask them for input and ideas. Brainstorming is an excellent idea when it comes to certain topics and you may have a hidden blogging expert on your team!
You may know a lot of what is listed below but sometimes it's good to be reminded of the basics, I hope these tips help your productivity. I'm going to hit you with some bullet points:
Your blog article content should be valuable, insightful, helpful and educational. For example, if you were a debt counselling company you could write a blog article called, ‘Learn how to get control of your finances’. You could list the best interest rates at the moment with links to ‘Money Supermarket’. You could also explain how to deal with debt, which debt you should pay off first and so on...
Some of the articles you publish on your blog should solve a problem in some form. For example, ‘10 ways to create more storage in your home’ or ‘How to create a content strategy for your business’
Do a Google search on the topic you are writing about, what is out there already? Are there lots of articles based around your offerings? Does your business have a USP? Let’s say you make cakes for your business but you also supply floral arrangements to display on the table next to the cake for a special occasion. Your website content would explain your services with the USP but you could also create a blog article to become even more attractive to search engines. Such as, ‘5 ways to create a romantic setting for your wedding cake’ or ‘Romantic flowers - what’s new in wedding cake design?’
The blog article should contain keywords and phrases for the topic that you are talking about to help with SEO. Let's look at the cake company, for example, keywords could be: wedding cake, birthday cake, wedding cupcakes, romantic wedding cakes, wedding cake flower displays, novelty birthday cakes, birthday cakes with balloons
When writing your blog article there should be an intro, conclusion and CTA (call to action). I'm going to use the cake business again to show an example - a good intro would be, ‘In this article we are going to talk about how wedding cake designs have changed over the years….’ at the end you could conclude with ‘Finally, you can see examples of different designs in our photo gallery. We have created styles to replicate those of different periods in time.’ The CTA could be - ‘Call us today to find out about our services or to discuss a cake design’ followed by, 'Our cakes are deliciously delightful in every way.'
When you write your article, think of relevant titles to help with SEO. Use good hook lines, subheadings and break up big blocks of text. It is tempting to be creative with titles for articles but it won’t help with search engine rankings - it’s good to be different but don’t go too far away from the topic
Keep your content simple and easy to understand. Nowadays people tend to scan read, depending on the topic of course! One of my customers is an anti-ageing supplement company and their old library of articles on their blog and in their magazines had of a lot of text-heavy technical content. Most of them had more than 3000 words. Now they have realised there is no need for so much text and the article is more likely to be read if it's in an easy form
I'm going to continue with mini bullets so I don't blast you with too much information in one go, I can expand on these at a later date. And, in no particular order...
Got a topic you want to write about? Dump write on a piece of paper first
Set your tone and style of writing for your blog - technical, fun, relaxed...
Link to other articles on your blog
Create evergreen content
Recycle good content that your readers have reacted well to before
Use quotes with links to the source or a name who wrote the quote
Update stats in articles if need be
Use analytics to see what content is popular and keep doing it
Ask people what they want to read about on your blog
Incorporate special offers or competitions in some articles
Create 'latest news, latest trends, hot topic' type articles
List sources of your information for credibility
Incorporate images and videos
Try to get backlinks to your articles
Check your grammar and get someone to proofread your articles if need be
Don't waste time on things that aren't successful
Ask for feedback
Spy on your competitors, what are they writing about?
That's just the beginning, there's so much more I could add but I will cap it there.
You need to know about Grammarly. It's an awesome tool to help you with your grammar, I use it all the time. As a blogger, you don't need to be a technical writer or have a degree in English literature and to be perfectly honest you shouldn't beat yourself up if you make spelling errors. You see them in newspapers, magazines, books, online etc...
Swiftly moving on to the topic of putting blog articles on your blog.
All of the above is a lot to take in, so I’m going to keep the rest of the article brief.
In part 1 we touched on putting a blog article on your website and the fact that your web developer or copywriter can do it for you or you can do it yourself. I also mentioned that if you used your web developer there may be a delay in it being put on so keep that in mind.
Due to WordPress being one of the most common platforms for Web development I will stick with that template. I also use Wix.com which is very straight forward too.
This isn't a 'how to' tutorial, I'm just giving you a glimpse into what is involved.
When you go into the blog section of the WordPress platform you should click on 'Add new'. You will see many features on the blog platform and you should familiarize yourself with them. Take a look at YouTube videos for explanations, guidelines and tips.
You can see below that you simply add the title of the article, input the content into the text box and do any modifications. Save as draft as you go along and preview before you publish.
You can see below that there is the option to select a featured image for the article. Make sure the image you use is named to help with SEO. If it's a picture of a pair of shoes, name the image something like, 'Gucci shoes' or 'red shoes', whatever is appropriate. The same applies if you add 'media' like a video, for example 'Erol's showreel'.
It is also important to edit the snippet section in the blog platform, this is what will show in search engines results, see below:
When you have finished creating the blog article and put the blog post live don't forget to check it again and click on all the links to check that they work.
Now we are going to tiptoe across the topic of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and also look at it in more detail at a later date. Put simply, search engine optimization is the process of making your website more appealing to search engines to increase traffic to your website.
And finally, I want to introduce you to something important, 'Google Indexing' just in case you haven't heard of it.
Google files all web pages that it finds online in an index. That index holds a description of the content on the web/blog page and the location (URL). When Google indexes your website or blogs it reads it and files it, it's as simple as that. That process is also referred to as ‘crawling’ and Google calls their crawlers Google bots. Google bots are constantly on the go a bit like me after three large slices of Costco carrot cake and getting a sugar rush.
I hope you found this article useful, do come back and join me for part 3 where I will be talking about blogging and social media, vlogging, analytics and more.
Do you need a copywriter? Contact me today on 07800887857 or email email@example.com for a quote.