Your Blog: Useful Tool or Time Waster?

by Deidre Rienzo on March 9, 2011

Yes, content is king. But creating content for content’s sake doesn’t serve your business. So if you’ve got a security company, but you’re blogging tips on beating the recession, where’s the connection? Unless the blog supports your business, it’s wasted effort. My suggestion: revamp or recoil.

Writing to meet a content quota isn’t the point. The information needs to be relevant, engaging, and serve a purpose. Today, let’s look at ways to ensure your blog supports your business. An effective blog should:

  • Share useful information with your audience
  • Show your expertise and create trust
  • Help keep your business in prospects’ minds
  • Support your SEO efforts
  • Attract new prospects

Promote your company in an interesting way

What does your target audience want to know? In the B2B world, they care about how your offerings can make their business stronger, more profitable, safer or healthier. What can you share that will make their day-to-day efforts hassle-free, or make their employees happier? Spare them the boring details! Share relevant, useful and valuable tips. (This will create trust in your business!) Most importantly, your blog posts should always relate back to the quality and capability of your products or services.

How can you relate this concept to your company blog? Consider the following guidelines:

  1. Fill a need. What need does your blog fill? If people don’t need or want the information you’re providing, they won’t read it. Your blog needs to enhance readers’ lives in a tangible way.
  2. Be your audience. Who is your audience? What do they want to read about in relation to your business? Meet your readers’ needs—or alienate your audience.
  3. Determine a plan. What topics will your blog cover? What are your goals? How often will you post? Don’t start a blog without thinking long and hard about what, exactly, you want to accomplish.
  4. Be aware. Before you embark on a blog, recognize the time commitment; they’re always hungry for relevant, useful content. Do you have an editorial strategy? Do you have time? If you’re not sure you have what it takes, blog for a month before going live.
  5. Do it well, or not at all. Like most marketing tools, blogs require planning and thoughtful execution. If you can’t produce quality, your efforts are likely better spent elsewhere. A subpar blog won’t represent your business well.

Blogs can be an incredible marketing tool. By writing for your audience in a way that supports your business, your blog can increase engagement, interest and loyalty. But when done incorrectly, a blog simply wastes time: both yours and your readers’. Don’t spend hours on a tool that doesn’t work for you. At the same time, don’t miss the opportunity to engage your audience and give them what they need. (Of course, we can help, from strategy development and editorial planning to implementation and management.)

What are some of your favorite business blogs and why? We share a few of our favorites on our blogroll, to the left.

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