7 Corporate blogging blunders to avoid

Are your business blogging efforts actually working against you? Bad strategies and poor planning means that many corporate blogs fizzle out before they sizzle. Here are the seven of the most common blogging blunders I see…

Are your business blogging efforts actually working against you?

Recently, I read Elizabeth Victor’s Biznology post outlining 10 reasons why companies should have an active business blog. Yes, blogging has some huge advantages. And yes, I believe that many companies would greatly benefit from an ongoing blogging initiative.

But that means taking the time to do it right.

Blogging requires a strong strategy, good optimization and fantastic content. Without those three elements, your blog will fizzle out before it starts to sizzle. It won’t help you boost search positions. It won’t engage your readers. And it won’t help your company make money.

That’s never good.

Want to keep your blog on the straight and narrow? Here are the seven of the most common corporate blogging blunders I see:

Stuffing the blog full of “SEO articles”

At least once a week, I receive an email asking me to create X “SEO articles” with a particular keyphrase density. Let’s get something straight: there is no such thing as an “SEO article.” Nor is there such a thing as keyphrase density.

If the only reason you’re producing blog content is for Google positions, know that you’re blogging for the wrong reasons. Yes, blogging has some great SEO benefits. But only when you create great content your readers want to read and share.

Writing a bunch of “isn’t our company great” posts

Does your blog sound like a bad date who spends the entire evening talking about himself? Don’t be that guy! It’s certainly appropriate to include some posts highlighting your company’s latest accomplishments. But if your blog is filled with press releases, case studies, and testimonials–and no other real content–your readers are going to tune out.

Instead, fill your blog with useful information that answers your readers’ questions. Your content will be much more popular (and is more likely to help with your overall positioning) if you do.

Ignoring the data

Do readers enjoy your posts? Are you sure?  Why not take the guesswork out of content creation and learn what your readers really like to read?

Open up your analytics and look for certain metrics. Which blog posts are most popular? Which blog posts pulled the most social shares? Which posts lead to a conversion? Review what’s working and use that data to create your editorial calendar. Because you do have an editorial calendar. Don’t you?

Not optimizing for SEO

I’ve read many articles that say if you “write naturally” and ignore keyphrases, top Google positions will fall into your lap. This couldn’t be further from the truth. If you want your blog posts to be found online, you have to know the keyphrases your targeting and seamlessly include them in your posts.

Is optimization not your thing? Hire someone who can help. A smart SEO copywriter can add keyphrases to your content without messing up its flow. Yes, this is an extra step, but it’s an important one. After all, why spend all your time writing a post that people won’t be able to find with Google?

Keeping an erratic publishing schedule

Do you blog whenever you “have time?” How is that going for you? The most successful (and well-trafficked) blogs publish on a strict schedule.

What that schedule reads like is completely up to you. You may prefer to publish once a week. Or, you may want to publish multiple times a day. The key is choosing a content distribution plan that you can actually stick with. Remember, it’s easier to increase your blogging frequency than to tell loyal readers that you’re slicing the number of posts you’re producing.

Tasking a non-writer to create blog posts

Blogging is hard work and it’s own specialized skill set. Writers have to know how to connect with your readers. They have to know how to write a succinct, compelling article. And they have to know some SEO to fully optimize the post.

Hiring a non-writer is setting them up for failure. Bloggers have to love writing (or at least like it a lot) to produce excellent content. If they don’t love writing, the posts will show it. Why put yourself–or the non-writer–through that?

Thin, low (or no) value content

When it comes to blogging, quality is better than quantity. If your company is paying $10/post to flood Google with new content, it’s time to take a big step back. Google rewards sites with high-quality and standout content (and the Panda update penalized sites with crappy copy.) Anything else shouldn’t be published on your blog, ever. Period.

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