If you’re a brand and you don’t have a blog, quite frankly you are missing out. You’re missing out on engaging with your existing customers, with educating new ones and with boosting your presence on Google. How do your customers know what you’re all about if you don’t have a blog?
You don’t have to be a master wordsmith to publish a weekly blog post; you just need to share interesting content that will capture people’s interest. A blog is a space on your website to forge your brand identity and get your customers interested in what you are all about. It can even be mainly visual, if that works best for your brand.
Blogging isn’t an instant win as a marketing method.
Writing a blog post won’t always convert into sales and even when it does it can take some time. So why bother?
Through a brand blog, you can convince your customers (and Google) that you are an expert in your field. If you’re an interiors brand, talk about the latest interiors trends and share guides on how to choose the perfect colour paint. Beauty brands can post tutorials and product reviews. Fashion websites are spoilt for choice with sharing the latest catwalk trends and how-to-wear guides. Flaunt your knowledge and people will come to respect you as a leader in your industry.
You can also inspire your customers – whether that is to buy one of your products or simply to think about something differently. One thing that you should remember is that your blog posts don’t have to convert sales. You can add links back to certain products if it flows within the posts, but think about your blog more as educating and inspiring your customers, rather than selling directly. Once they trust your opinion and feel inspired by your posts, they are likely to organically shop on your website.
Blogging is also great for improving the SEO of your overall website.
Research the key terms that are relevant to your brand and work them into your blog posts, utilising image alt and heading tags. It’s important to not appear as if you’re blogging for the sole purpose of appealing to Google, but it’s easy to plan your content around key words that you are trying to boost. If you’re a furniture brand trying to push velvet sofas, you could organise a series of blog posts such as ‘Why we love velvet sofas’ or ‘How to care for your velvet sofa’.
Leading on from this, it’s important to build up content around key search terms that people may type into Google that are related to your products. If you sell hats, you could write a post about caring for your trilby or how to choose the right hat for you – your post will then appear in searches for these queries, leading the right kind of customers to your brand via your blog page.
You can create a similar effect through Pinterest, which is really a visual search engine rather than a social network. Pin high quality portrait images from each blog post, preferably with an infographic that contains the title of your post, ensuring that you have enabled rich pins. People will then click on the pins and be directed through to your blog post, and subsequently onto your website.
Your brand identity also gets a push from regular blogging. An ‘About Us’ page can briefly inform a potential customer what you are all about, but they will get a more rounded view of your overall ethos by quickly scanning over your blog. Yes, this can also be created through Instagram, but your blog is a place where you are in control of your own content and can write more lengthy posts or share photographs that may not fit in with your overall grid.
Blogs also assure your customers that you are invested in your business.
You are spending time and energy in creating regular content for them to read, and that makes them think that you care about their needs. Research into which categories of posts are the most popular and plan similar ideas into your content calendar, listening to what your audience wants.
Ideally, you will blog once a week, but if you’re struggling to find the time, aim for at least twice a month. Consistency matters and people will keep coming back to a blog that they know is regularly updated. You should also be pushing your blog posts out on your social channels, letting your existing customers know that there is new content to read and providing interesting content that could spark conversations on Facebook or Twitter.
What are your waiting for?
Words by Emma Lavelle.
Whalar produced image by @kerryvillers.