What is the goal of your business blog? If you’re a little stumped by this question outside of “gaining website traffic” then there’s a problem. See, blogs ARE great sources for generating more hits on your business site, and they’re also good for increasing visibility – a consumer searches something related to your business and boom, a blog that’s hosted on your site pops up. However, there should be two other key goals you’re keeping in mind when creating content for a business blog.
First, blogs have to add value to a consumer’s life, as well as the website they’re hosted on. Blogging solely because you want to get more site hits doesn’t actually do well for your brand because consumers can tell when a site is just trying to pull them in with click bait. They may click on your site once, but they never will again.
Second, your blog is an extension of your business and therefore your knowledge. It should be used to set yourself apart as better than the rest – a.k.a., if someone needs information on the topic your business is based on, they should want to go to you first because you’re the expert. This is called being a thought leader.
Being a thought leader is harder than it sounds. Just because you have lots of knowledge and degrees and skills doesn’t mean you’ll automatically make a great thought leadership blog. Here we’ll explore five essential blogging tips for not only crafting better blog posts, but blog posts that set you apart as the cream of the crop.
1. Don’t be too broad.
First of all, we as people have either a tendency to sell ourselves short or build ourselves up too much. You may have a lot of knowledge about a wide variety of subjects, even those that tangentially relate to your business, but that’s not how thought leadership works. Spreading yourself too thin is a bad idea – you’re looking to sell yourself as the expert on one subject.
What’s the old saying? Jack of all trades, master of none?
2. You get points for style.
Thought leadership isn’t wholly about the knowledge you possess. It’s the main part of the role of a thought leader, but you’ve got to consider another aspect – personality. Think about this – the fun chemistry teacher that taught kids how to make foam and turn fire different colors was always more popular than the teacher who specialized in never-ending lectures, even if the latter was more well-versed in the periodic table.
Thought leaders aren’t just fountains of knowledge. They’re individuals who people WANT to listen to. The more personality you inject into your blog, the better off you’ll be.
3. Point out your credentials and experience.
Here is where you need to walk a fine line. No one wants to read blog post after blog post of someone boasting about their various life accomplishments, but you also must insert experience and credibility into your posts in order to give them weight. Finding a happy medium is difficult, but doable. Without credibility, you won’t find thought leadership.
4. Publish more content (and a wider variety of it).
Quality should always win out over quantity in terms of thought leadership, so if you’re afraid of pushing yourself then pull back – don’t sacrifice hits and updating consistency for overall blog quality. Still, posting content at least once a week is crucial to establishing yourself as a thought leader.
Also consider diversifying your content. Thought leaders don’t just blog – they write, they create, they provide. E-books, emails, guides, podcasts, infographics – these are all a thought leader’s tools of the trade.
5. Always expand your horizons.
Becoming a thought leader isn’t an excuse to stop learning – in fact, it’s quite the contrary. Thought leaders are constantly learning about new information, new methods and industry best practices. One reason consumers and peers will flock to a thought leader’s blog is because they have the newest information available and are willing to share their own take on it.
Thought leaders are the founding fathers and mothers of tomorrow, which means it requires time, effort and patience in order to establish yourself among these elite few. As one final tip, never stop honing your craft. Keep researching, keep blogging and keep learning – you’ll be rewarded for it sooner than you think.
Looking for more blogging tips? Take a look at these common mistakes you could be making on your blog–and their solutions!