As you're rethinking your strategy for 2014, one of the things you should really consider is whether or not your tools are effective. One of the most widely used tools today is the blog, which provides advice, suggestions and reading material to help brand your company as an expert. That’s a good thing. Being labeled an expert gives you credibility in your field, and makes people want to hear what you have to say. Although this can be a tool that will help you, it can also hurt you. Readers want to be engaged and informed, and anything short of that does not add value.
There are a number of reasons why your blog may not be as effective. One thing good brands realize is that they don’t have to have their content filled with links, nor do they have to self-promote at every turn. When you have a loyal following, you’re getting the promotion without doing a thing. Here are a few other ways you can hurt your own brand:
- Self-promoting too much. When you promote your company or services all the time in every single post, it gets boring. Good companies realize that readers want value, and your content should reflect that. Giving a customer information to help them solve a problem will work more effectively than having your content filled with links. A good company knows that one link that connects them or at the most, two will suffice. Anything more, especially if it takes away from the relevancy, kills the post and the brand. For instance, a news piece may link to one article that directly relates to the story. That adds relevancy but does not take away from the content. If you have a service blog though, like self-storage, having links to climate-controlled, auto, and outdoor storage within one posting is a bit much. Design blogs will link to a photo or featured piece of a designer to get their point across, but you never want to have too many links. Spamming your own site hurts your brand more than you can ever know.
- Not responding to comments. Having a consistent rapport with your readers is important. It’s good to respond to comments, whether they are bad or good on the blog or social media. Readers respect you more and feel that you care about your brand.
- Content is too keyword driven. Although having some keywords within the content is good, there is such a thing as too much. Creating posts specifically for keywords is obvious and it gets tiring. You want to have a good mix of content that is relevant, trend driven and current to create a balance that works. Companies that place too much on keyword driven content are doomed before they get out of the gate.
- Writing is not diverse. This is important. Every post on your blog does not have to be about your company. When you show a diversity in your writing, it increases your ROI in your brand.
These are tips that can help you in 2014. Look at your strategy – is your blog worthy?