How can you keep generating fresh ideas for blog posts? Use email to extend the reach of your blog? Build links and traffic? And most importantly, use a company blog to drive real business results?
Find the answers to these questions and others here in more of the best articles and blog posts on business blogging last year.
7 Ways to Keep Fresh Content Flowing On Your Blog by ProBlogger
Darren Rowse offers seven tips for avoiding “blogger’s block” and keeping fresh ideas and content flowing on your blog, from mind mapping and answering reader questions to taking advantage of guest post opportunities.
How to Build Your Blog Using Good Old-Fashioned E-mail by Copyblogger
Dean Rieck details several methods for utilizing email to promote your blog posts, as well as helpful techniques for encouraging email subscriptions and properly managing your blog email list.
37 Tips for Optimizing Blogs and Feeds – SES New York by Online Marketing Blog
Lee Odden interviews Michael Gray of Atlas Web Services, Sally Falkow of Expansion Plus, Michel Leconte of SEO Samba and Rebecca Lieb, VP of U.S. operations for Econsultancy, about SEO, link building and RSS tactics for business websites and blogs. Among the tips they provide: keep keywords in mind for blog posts and titles, write timely blog posts, and have your own domain.
10 ways to boost the value of your corporate blog by iMedia Connection
Chris Baggott offers tips for finding the “the successful formula for both high ROI and reader satisfaction” for corporate blogs that actually contribute to bottom line success, such as keeping search top of mind, producing an adequate volume of content, and writing with an appropriate tone (humble, humorous, honest) for a blog. Another noteworthy post from iMedia Connection is Top link-building strategies for your corporate blog, in which Justin Evans suggests tactics such as commenting on other industry blogs and linking to both your own and others’ blog posts on social bookmarking sites to build valuable links for blog SEO.
7 Tips for Making Your Blog Stand Out from the Rest by SEO Hosting
Eric Brantner presents helpful tips for making a blog unique and compelling, including building relationships with readers, promoting your blog “like crazy” through social media and guest blogging, and, my favorite: “if you aren’t first, be the best” when covering breaking-news type stories.
Why Your Blog Beats Your Website to Your Prospects by Content Marketing Today
Of course, blogs and websites serve different purposes for businesses. Website content is more static and focused on the company’s specific products and services, while blogs offer a steady stream of fresh content and thought-leadership type pieces. In this excellent post, Newt Barrett goes beyond these obvious observations, offering case studies of how business organizations have taken advantage of the unique strengths of each medium to drive business results and acquire new customers.
Content Marketing with Blogs: Fishing for Business, or Catch-and-Release? by Writing on the Web
The consistently brilliant Patsi Krakoff warns against “catch and release” blogging—attracting readers with great content, then failing to provide any call to action based on that content. To rectify this, she suggests what she terms the CODA system: Content, Outreach, Design, Action. The action isn’t always a sales pitch, but is a request to do something more than extends the relationship, such as following you on Twitter or Facebook, tweeting your blog post, subscribing, or downloading an e-book or white paper.
27 Blogging Secrets to Power Your Community by Community and Social Media
Chris Brogan shares more than two dozen tips for attracting more blog traffic, divided into three categories: Starter Moves (e.g. use an intriguing title, start with a question); Technical Stuff (e.g. clean layout, proper permalink structure); and The Bonus Round (e.g. share your posts using social media platforms, link to other blogs often).
10 ways to increase the number of blog comments by How to Make My Blog
Marko Saric offers tips for making your blog more interactive and conversational by generating more comments, such as asking questions, thanking your commenters, and commenting on other blogs.
In this guest post, Jade Craven recommends using a landing page to draw traffic to your own blog through guest posts on other blogs. She identifies three types of landing pages, outlines three steps for creating a killer landing page, and shows two ways to get attention for the page. Another noteworthy post on ProBlogger is 11 Tips for Getting Your Comments Noticed on a Popular Blog, in which Darren Rowse offers tips for getting your comments noticed and driving traffic back to your blog such as being the early bird, disagreeing with the post, asking a question, or using humor.
In this extensive post, Michael VanDeMar first explains why finding non-copyrighted images is important, then explains how to find free images through government websites or Creative Commons licenses.
Can Blogs Help Drive Purchasing Decisions? by Social Media Today
Crystal King reports that a Forrester survey from the second quarter of 2008 found that only 16% of readers of company blogs trusted them. She notes, however, that more recent research indicates that both readership of and trust in blogs is increasing. Another survey in late 2008 conducted by JupiterResearch/BuzzLogic stated that “50 percent of frequent blog readers say they have taken an action after reading a blog.” Crytal emphasizes the importance of building up trust with corporate blog readers, and concludes “Bottom line, if your company isn’t blogging, it probably needs to be.”
5 Ways Your Blog Can Make Money by Conversation Marketing
The inimitable Ian Lurie details five ways—well really four, since “steal & cheat” is, as he notes, not an advisable long-term strategy—to profit from blogging. The most promising? Using it to build your business, though as Ian notes, “It’s not easy. It takes a long time. But it works, beautifully. I have yet to see someone who writes insightful, thoughtful stuff 1-2 times a week fail at it.”
Ten Ways to Crank Out Killer Posts in Ten Minutes or Less by Remarkablogger
Michael Martine presents tactics for quickly knocking out quality blog posts, such as answering questions from readers, reporting the results of a reader poll, or writing about the coolest person you’ve met recently.