Hopefully, you've been convinced by us or someone else that a blog is a pretty essential area of your company's website. If not, here's a short argument in favor of the blog: a blog will keep readers coming back to your site for new posts, it will help with the SEO for your website, it shows you know what you're talking about, posts give your customers something to share on social media, and can help build relationships. Convinced? Good.
But the hardest part of starting a company blog is figuring out what the heck you should talk about. It would seem to make sense that if you're blogging to boost your business, you should blog all about your business, right? Wrong.
A successful business blog isn't all about the business, but the people that keep it in business: the customers.
Interesting, engaging business blogs think about what kind of content in their niche their customers are interested in, and that's not always the ins and outs of their business. However, it can be:
Huge Company News
While readers won't be interested in a blog that's only about the business writing it, businesses can still post their biggest and most exciting announcements on their blogs. Social Media Examiner recommends having at least 80% of your content focused on helping your audience. Company-related posts can include special events, sales, new products or services being offered, and fun pieces that reflect company culture. But even with company news, you want to think about how the post can be focused on the customer.
What's an even better way of letting your customers know they matter than by writing blog content for them? Writing blog content about them! Every now and then, spotlight a customer or a success story. What you should include will depend on your business, but the ideas are limitless.
Featuring customers is actually a way to get away with being more product-centric than you normally could. A post about your business's favorite things about one of your products will come off as self-centered and too promotional. However, asking a customer their favorite things? Gold.
This one is especially important for business-to-business companies. But even with business-to-consumer products, your company is part of a larger community that you should acknowledge. Of course, you don't need to go promoting direct competitors, but acknowledging them, or promoting similar products and services that don't directly compete with your own, but that appeal to the same audience. You can also provide commentary on trends or popular topics of conversation in the industry.
How-To's and Tutorials
No one knows everything, but everyone knows something. Figure out what problems your customers are having related to your industry and solve them, or find out what questions they have and answer them. Nothing will help out your audience as much as these problem-solving posts.
Teach your customers how to get more out of your product or service. For example, if you sell fashion accessories, teach your readers how to put outfits together from top to bottom. If you provide a service, don't worry about teaching your customers how to do your job. A lot of the time, reading the post will make them realize they don't have the time, knowledge, etc. to do it themselves and show them that you know how to do it for them.
On those rare occasions that you do write a post about yourself, provide information that can't be told elsewhere on your website. If someone wanted a list of what a certain product can do, they would go to the product's page. Instead, provide context and provide interesting stories about your brand or a specific product or service. Why should a customer care about a certain product or service, or your business in general? As the old adage goes, 'show, don't tell.'