As any digital marketing expert will tell you, there are many benefits to having a blog. But if your manufacturing company has a blog and doesn’t maintain it, that’s even worse than not having one at all. According to a Content Marketing Institute report, 64% of B2B marketers say producing enough content is a challenge. It takes time to come up with blog post ideas and then actually write and post them. However, it doesn’t have to eat up hours of your day. Here’s a road map for how a busy person like you can make time for blogging.
- Know your audience. This is the cardinal rule of any kind of marketing, but is especially fitting for your blog. Consider what types of information they’re looking for and get blogging.
- Gather ideas. Where can you get great blog post ideas? Try some of these:
- Google Analytics: I’m no Google Analytics expert myself, but I can easily look to see which keywords are driving the most traffic to a website.
- Customer service: What questions is your customer service team being asked frequently?
- Unanswered questions: Are there holes in your website that you have yet to fill with content or you can’t figure out where to put this information?
- Expert opinions: Pick a hot topic in your industry and have leaders in your company weigh in on it.
- Employee spotlight: This might sound hokey, but people like to know who is behind the widgets, machines and materials they’re buying.
- News: If you have anything newsworthy happening at your company, don’t just add it to the news section on your website. Your blog is a great platform for this too.
- How-to: “How to” is how many long-tail search queries start. Shoot a quick video or jot down a step-by-step process for how to do something. The video doesn’t have to be the quality of a feature film, but it should clearly show what you’re trying to demonstrate.
- Competitor sites: No, I’m not telling you to steal their ideas, but seeing what topics they write about might get your creative juices flowing.
- Collateral: If you’ve got whitepapers, case studies, videos, guides, etc., you can re-purpose these and post them to your blog with a brief introductory paragraph.
- Create an editorial calendar. You’ve got so much on your plate already; creating a calendar can keep you on track. On your calendar include the date, topic and author of the blog post (if you’ll have multiple authors). Also consider how often you want to post. At a bare minimum, you should post once a week.
- Offer incentives: It can be like pulling teeth to get team members to write blog posts, but everyone loves winning stuff. Run a contest to see who can write the most blog posts in a defined period of time. Make the prize something they’ll want to win, like an extra vacation day or lunch with the CEO.
- Find time to write. For me, I know that the beginning of the month is usually less hectic for me, so this is when I write blog posts. Can’t find the time? Make time for it. Block off periods of time on your calendar so you force yourself to dedicate that time to blogging.
- Stick to your plan (most of the time). Sticking to your plan will keep you on track. Unless something incredibly urgent pops up that you must blog about, most blog posts won’t need to get bumped or removed from the calendar.
It’s inevitable that maintaining a blog will eat up some of your time, but with a well-organized plan for execution, it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming time-suck. Do you have any blogging tips that help you keep your blog lively and active?
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