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Blogging for SEO – Six Steps to Better Blogging

7 April, 2012

i love blogging

Most companies nowadays have already taken on board the fact that blogging is the new Public Relations.  It’s a great way of communicating with customers and clients, either current or potential.  What’s more, blogging and social media platforms can be a really cost-effective way of doing PR.  Blogging is a brilliant way of promoting key messages, letting customers know about new products or services and disseminating information about your organization and what you have to offer.

However, many corporate blogs end up being boring and don’t attract the amount of traffic that would make them an effective method of communication.

Furthermore, many blogs can be quite difficult to locate on the web – something that can easily be fixed with SEO (Search Engine Optimization).   I’m going to take a look here at some of the things that can be done to make a blog easier to find and more accessible to the target audience.

SEO seems to be one of the magic formulae on the internet and many people think that it’s a complicated process that they will find difficult to learn.  Basically, SEO is just a matter of finding and using the right keywords or keyphrases that will allow your blog to feature high in the search engines rankings.

Step One

, then, is to make sure that you’re using the correct keywords/keyphrases and there are a few tricks that you can use to suss out exactly which words and phrases your target audience will be using when they search for information online.  This means doing some sort of keyword research.  Before you start thinking “Help – I’m not tech savvy enough to do this”, let me tell you that help is at hand.  There are plenty of keyword research tools and software available nowadays that will practically do the job for you.  It’s worth having a look around at what’s available so that you can find something that suits you and the way you work.  Some of the most popular are:

Magnifying glass keyword research

Step Two

is to devise an effective content plan for your blog.  Starting off is relatively easy when blogging, but keeping it going is another matter altogether.  You’ll need to decide how often you plan to post to your blog and try to stick to that.  Adding regular content to your blog is a sure fire way of building an audience – and this audience will expect to see new content every time they visit your blog, if there’s nothing new, then there’s no need for them to visit.  The first few times you probably won’t have any problem coming up with ideas for blog posts.  However, once you’ve been at it for a while, you may find that it becomes harder to think of content to write that is both interesting and relevant.  One method of dealing with this is to allow your readers to post comments on your blog posts – you may be surprised at what they have to say and you will probably end up using some of the comments as a starting point for new blog posts.

Step Three

is make sure that you’re using the keywords in the right places.  This means that you’ll need to include the keywords/keyprhases in the title of the post (where they matter the most).  Coming up with a good title, or “headline” for the post is vital – it needs to make the viewer want to read the whole post.  This is where you can really let rip with your creativity – make jokes, use irony or puns and metaphors.  Above all, ensure that the title is focussed on the prospective reader and make it easy to understand.  Try not to include the keywords too many times in the main text – once in the first paragraph and once in the last paragraph is ideal.  If you need to mention the keyword more than this, you’ll need to come up with other ways of saying what you want.

Step Four

is to use descriptive references rather than pronouns.  This will make your blog much easier to find by search engines.  Pronouns, both objective and personal, may make for great copy, but they won’t do much to raise your blog post’s position in the search engine rankings.

Step Five

is to use links that contain your keywords/keyphrases.  This means including anchor text as links to older blog posts so that readers will know what they’re likely to be met with when they click on the links.

Step Six

is to try to ensure that the keywords are included in the tags that you use for the blog post and in the categories that the post is placed in.

Once you’ve taken all this on board and followed the Six Steps, you will still need to target the correct sort of audience for your blog.  The main reason for maintaining a corporate blog is to reach a wider audience – to gain a following and shout out your message to as many people as possible.  This is done by making sure that your core readership is made up of people who will share your blog posts with others; friends, family and social media network contacts.  This is what makes the world go round online.  You will find that your readership is composed of three layers:

  • Heavy Content Sharers – these people are the ones who will help you to spread the word most effectively.
  • Content Distributors – these are people who use social media platforms such as Facebook, Google+ and Twitter to post links to blog posts that they like.
  • Potential Consumers of your Content – people who may be interested in your subject/products/services and may also be receptive to your style of writing or point of view.

content distribution

Another way of expanding your audience is to visit online communities where your target audience is already active and participate in the discussions going on there.  If you can manage to make interesting comments that are relevant and insightful, then you’re sure to get noticed by others who will follow your links to your blog to find out more about you.  Make sure that you also make full use of social media platforms such as Twitter, Google+ and Facebook to provide links to your blog posts or other relevant information that you find online.

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