- blog marketing
- increase customer base
How to Use Your Blog to Increase Your Customer Base
A 2019 study found that businesses who blog receive 55% more visitors than those that don’t. And yet many companies still aren’t blogging, or they made a few posts years ago and then abandoned it shortly thereafter. This is often because the benefits of blogging aren’t always apparent right from the start.
But the truth is, regularly posting quality content is one of the cheapest and most effective forms of online marketing. If done correctly, over time your blog can become a valuable asset and you can use utilize it to increase your customer base and grow your sales.
Target Valuable Keywords for SEO
The more content you produce on your website, the more opportunities there are to utilize SEO to increase your web traffic.
With every blog post you write, you should try to target between one and three keywords. These keywords should have three main characteristics:
- They’re relevant to the niche or industry you write about.
- They receive a good amount of monthly searches.
- They have a relatively low amount of competition.
To find these keywords, you’ll need to perform some keyword research. To do this you can use Google Keyword Planner, which is a free service, or one of the many paid options available online. Come up with a number of terms related to your industry, and use your keyword research tool to find similar terms.
Generally speaking, longer keywords (referred to as longtail keywords) are usually easier to rank for as they’re much more specific. You can also investigate certain keywords to see what websites are ranking for them. If the websites ranking for a keyword are mostly new sites, or sites with low-quality content, there’s a good chance they will be easy to overtake.
Enter website URLs into one of the many online apps to check the age of the site, and review the content to determine if the quality is lacking. In addition to helping you find keywords, many keyword research tools can also give you insights into the competition for certain keywords.
Once you have your list of keywords, start building content around those keywords. Just remember not to sacrifice the quality of your writing. Include keywords when you can and when it feels natural, but don’t overuse them. And always ensure your content provides value to your readers and isn’t just there to improve your SEO. Good writers know how to put the reader first while also sprinkling in enough keywords to still get Google’s attention.
If you continue to target the right keywords, and build quality content around those keywords, you’ll have a much better chance of ranking higher in search results and attracting new customers.
Generate More Pages for Indexing
By simply writing and posting content on a regular basis you’ll increase traffic to your website. This is because you’ll be creating more pages that can be indexed by search engines, which gives potential customers more ways to find you.
The truth is, all of your pages aren’t going to rank for your desired keywords. Even the best SEO experts can’t rank every page every time.
However, the more pages you create the better chance that some of them will eventually rank highly in search results. With enough content, you may even start ranking for keywords you didn’t intend to.
Google also looks favourably on websites that are updated regularly. While Google still values things like keywords and links, in the new age of SEO content is king. Search engines are working to identify pages that feature quality content, rather than the ones that are simply exploiting its algorithm. Pages that add quality content regularly now have a better chance of being seen as an authority by Google, which means they will be given preferential treatment in search rankings.
Finally, consistently adding new content means your website will be indexed more often. Every time a search engine visits your site your position in the search rankings will be re-assessed, giving you a better chance to climb the rankings.
In fact, companies that blog receive 434% more indexed pages.
All of this means more traffic for your website. Think of every blog post as a new doorway from which potential customers can discover your business.
Establish Yourself as an Authority
One of the most important rules of sales is that you need to be able to sell yourself. If people believe in you and trust your opinion they will be much more likely to buy from you.
In order to achieve this, you’ll need to establish yourself as an authority in your niche or industry. This means that people see you as an expert in your field and you’re someone they seek out to get the information they need.
People who are seen as authorities are able to build loyal followings of customers. These customers regularly buy their products and services, not necessarily because they believe in what they’re buying, but because they believe in who they’re buying it from.
But with so much competition online, how do you set yourself apart from everyone else and emerge as an authority? Regularly producing valuable and useful blog content is one of the best and easiest ways to do this.
Start off by asking yourself the following:
- What are the most frequently asked questions in your industry?
- What questions are customers not getting answers to?
- What questions aren’t getting answered well enough?
- What other areas of information are lacking in other blogs and resources?
Go over your competitor’s blogs, industry forums, and other areas where customers congregate to find the answers to these questions. Find out what information customers are asking for that they’re not getting. Learn what information your competitors are giving customers, and then find a way to present that information better and answer questions more thoroughly.
When you’re ready, start regularly posting quality content. The process can take time, but once people realize your blog is answering the questions others are not, they’ll start turning to you when they need information.
And those same people who come to you to answer their questions will also start coming to you when they’re ready to make a purchase.
Increase Customer Engagement
Blogging is about more than just providing customers with information. It’s about starting a conversation with them.
The comment section of a blog is often an underutilized tool by businesses. As you continually produce good content and grow your audience, customers will begin to leave comments. This could either be simple thank yous for providing valuable information, or follow-up questions to something you brought up in your post.
Quality content also promotes social sharing, which exposes you to a wider audience and starts new conversations about your brand.
Comments and social shares are an excellent opportunity to start interacting and engaging with your customers. Studies have continually proven that positive interactions with businesses lead to greater customer loyalty. It’s also been shown that a higher level of customer engagement almost always leads to higher sales.
So, how can you use your blog to increase your customer engagement?
- Write about topics you know your customers are interested in. Dive deep into your customer demographics. What are they interested in? What do they want to know? What posts have they reacted positively to in the past? Use these questions to fuel your content moving forward.
- Make engaging easy. Use a good comment system and include social sharing buttons on your blog so your customers can quickly and easily engage with your content.
- Ask for engagement: The best way to get engagement is to ask for it. Finish by asking what your readers’ thoughts are on the topic you’ve covered, or ask them if they’ve had a similar experience to the one you described.
The more positive interactions and conversations you have with your customers, the greater your blog following will become. And as your blog following grows, so will your customer base.
Produce More Social Media Content
Creating great blog posts has the added benefit of helping feed your social media channels. Once you write and post a blog article, you can use that content in a number of different ways.
The simplest way is to simply share your blog post on your various social media channels, like this:
You can build a post around the content and include a link back to your website to allow people to read the full article. If you’re publishing blogs regularly, this will ensure that you have consistent content for your social media channels.
You can also repurpose that content to be used in other mediums. You can create a video from your blog and post it on your YouTube channel. You can take a graphic you used in your blog and post on Instagram. Or you can take key excerpts from your blogs and post those on Twitter.
A good blog will fuel your social media and help supplement the content you have planned for those platforms. By always making sure you have valuable and useful content on your social media pages, you’ll further your online following and increase awareness of your brand.
Blogs aren’t necessarily a place to promote products and services. While they can be used for those purposes, they are most effective when used to share useful and valuable information with your customers.
However, that doesn’t mean blogs can’t be used to drive conversions.
We’ve already discussed how blogs can establish authority and build trust amongst your readers. The more value you provide your customers, the more interested they’ll be in the products and services you have to offer.
If a blog post starts driving a lot of traffic to your website, or goes viral, you’ll want to make sure you’re taking advantage of all the new people getting exposed to your brand.
The easiest way to take advantage of this is to provide links within your blog to other pages on your website. If you happen to mention a product, service, offer, or anything else, make sure to link to those pages in your blog.
Here’s a great example of this:
This author was actually able to fit two calls to action into the end of her blog post.
===== Here’s another example=====
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===== I dunno, felt cute, might delete later=====
You can also include links to your products and services around your post, as long as it doesn’t interfere with the content.
You’ll notice many top bloggers include some sort of call to action at the end of their blog. Most will use this space to promote their email list, free trials, or contact information. This is another way to increase conversions and capitalize on the quality content you produce.
If you ask someone to give away their email without hardly knowing anything about your business, chances are they won’t do it. However, if you prove your value by answering their questions and providing them with helpful information, they’ll be much more likely to subscribe so they can hear more from you.
For many businesses, blog posts are used as the first piece of a larger funnel that eventually leads prospects towards a sale. Customers discover the blog, find the information useful, and eventually discover products and services they want to purchase.
If your blog posts genuinely help people and catch their attention, a well-placed call to action can be the first step towards a larger sale.
As content becomes more and more important to building an online following, blogging will be critical for businesses that want to grow and expand their customer base.
Paid advertising can be an effective strategy for increasing traffic, but none of those visitors will be as engaged as those that found your blog organically. With the right content strategy, you can use your blog to build a loyal audience that trusts your opinion and regularly purchases your products and services.
If you’re still not blogging, or you’re not blogging regularly, consider implementing a content strategy that can allow you to post at least once a week. If done correctly, your blog may become the best marketing tool your business has.