People and companies that start blogs often do so for different reasons ranging from promoting products to opening up channels of communication with customers.
Answering the question of “How you start a blog?” must go beyond the mechanical process of signing up at a service like WordPress, Blogger.com or Typepad.com. While each of these services provides step by step instructions, they don’t have any way of providing a blueprint for success in each specific situation.
The answer that will result in a return on your effort involves becoming familiar with blogging as a communication form and making a plan. Before making substantial efforts towards starting a company blog, it’s important to be familiar with blogs in your category as a reader. By consuming content in the form you’ll be publishing, you’ll have a greater appreciation for finding the right tone of voice, posting frequency, topics and guidelines for interaction through commenting on and off site.
Creating a plan or strategy for a blog starts with identifying objectives. What do you hope to achieve? Next is an understanding of the audience you hope to reach. What unmet needs to they have that you can satisfy through blogging? A content plan that outlines how you will reach business objectives by meeting your target audience needs is followed by putting proper measurement tools in place.
To start a blog, start by asking:
• What are the business objectives a blog can help achieve? (ie improved customer service, thought leadership, web site traffic, awareness, media coverage, leads?)
• What will I write about on my blog? What will your editorial calendar be?
• How often should you post content and who within the organization can you enlist to help?
• What success metrics can be put in place that will best motivate others in the organization to read, promote and participate in the blog?
Sketch out 20 or 30 topics you plan to write about that address the needs of your target audience. Then, establish a link between these concepts and your overall business objectives. To start and manage a successful blog requires thinking like a publisher. That means planning editorial resources, technical, creative, marketing and analytics.
Spending time up front planning a blog will help ensure it becomes a productive communications channel for your business.
TopRank has been blogging as a business for over 5 years and has helped many, many companies enter the blogging world and reach specific business goals ranging from improved industry awareness and customer communications to increased search engine rankings and online sales. If you’re interested in entering the blogging world, check out our blog, Online Marketing Blog and inquire online or give us a call at 1-877-872-6628.
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