With so much content living on the internet, it can be easy for your blog post to get lost – particularly if it’s unoriginal, bland or lacking a basic small business marketing plan to back it up.
These 12 steps will help you tackle the marketing component of that equation to get your blog the recognition it deserves and help you grow your business.
1. Proofread, proofread, proofread!
While proofreading has little to do with marketing, it certainly helps establish an attractive brand. If you fail to proofread your posts, your typos will speak loudly to discredit any other expertise you may have.
2. Add images that will grab readers’ attention.
Hint: Avoid pictures of models dressed in business-casual wear, sitting around a conference table. Boring! Go for something a little more vibrant that matches the feel of your business.
3. Link appropriate content to internal and external web pages.
Be strategic about your in-text links. Only link to content that is particularly relevant or provides substantial value to the reader. Be sure to link to internal and external resources to establish credibility, both with readers and Google. But don’t send readers away from your blog through an external link unless it’s relevant!
4. Optimize for search engines by integrating appropriate keywords.
It’s important to be strategic with small business SEO, as you don’t want to stuff each post with irrelevant keywords. Your readers will pick up on it and be turned off. Rather, designate a keyword and use it in 1-2% of your text. For a 300-word article, that’s three to six times.
5. Shorten the post’s URL.
A shortened URL will look nicer in social media bios, and more importantly, it will allow you to track clicks to see where they originate. Popular URL shorteners include bit.ly, ow.ly, and goo.gl.
6. Add a link to your most recent blog post in your email signature and social media bios.
Your audience is undoubtedly somewhere in the social media universe. Link to your latest post in your social bios to reach current and potential followers. For example, placing the link to your blog post in your Instagram bio and referencing it in your most recent Instagram post. With tools like WiseStamp and BlogSigs, you can even set your e-signature to automatically include a link to your most recent blog post.
7. Share your post on social media. Then share it again.
Let your entire network know about the post by sharing a link on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and your other relevant social pages. It will be received best if you tailor each share to its respective platform – Add a Summary Card on Twitter or an illustrative image on Instagram. You get the idea! Also, it never hurts to enlist a content scheduling tool like Hootsuite to help you get the biggest bang for your hard work.
8. Enlist social bookmarking sites to get your content out there.
Digg, BlogLovin’, Delicious, StumbleUpon – all great places to drop your blog post. When people like your content, they’ll bookmark it and you’ll get more exposure!
9. Let your subscribers know a new post was published with an e-newsletter.
Want another way to ensure you’re reaching your whole audience with your post? A simple newsletter can work wonders!
10. Engage online with writers and readers of similar content.
This will put you in front of people interested in the content you just published. It’ll also help establish you as an expert on the topic. By engaging with like-minded people, you gain more exposure and also get to read their point of view.
11. Reach out to other bloggers and ask them to mention your post in theirs.
This is the factor every start-up CEO at every coffee shop networking meeting has proven right – Online network marketing works. It may look different sometimes, but it’s equally as important – if not more – as traditional marketing tactics! A healthy, active network will get you and your content in doors that would have otherwise been closed to you. Just be sure you’re using appropriate etiquette. No spammy forum posts or other black-hat SEO techniques.
12. Track and analyze the post’s performance.
As with any of your online content, you’ll want to track the post’s performance using an analytics tool like Google Analytics and the link shortener you used earlier. Determine what you’re doing right and what parts of your blog strategy could stand some tweaking.
We know this is a long list of digital marketing to-dos and might seem like a lot. But remember: your content is your brand. It’s worth taking the extra time to give your blog post a head start. A little work on the front end will save you a lot of head-scratching and catch-up on the back end. Happy posting!
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