Do you want to create a blog to get more engagement on your website? Maybe you already have a blog, and you’re looking for a way to get more people involved. Either way, having a blog is essential to the success of your business. Companies that blog report 55% more traffic compared to those who don’t use a blog on their website.
Today we are going to take a look at some tips you should keep in mind if you want to deliver thoughtful, relevant, and engaging content to your audience. We are going to start with one of the foundations of creating great content — understanding your target audience.
Do Extensive Customer Research
The first step you need to take when attempting to build an engaging blog is customer research. It’s nearly impossible to reach your target demographic if you’re not quite sure who is interested in your content.
There are several ways you can learn about your audience. Preferably, you’ll want to review the Google Analytics data for your website. There’s a wealth of information available across the various reports.
For example, you can look at the popularity of past blog posts to determine which topics performed well, and which ones didn’t meet expectations. Understanding why people come to your site will help you make more content that catches the attention of your audience.
You can also view your demographics from Google Analytics. Learning about the people that visit your site can help you fine-tune your brand message and voice. Consumers have expectations for brands based on numerous factors, including pain points, goals, and personality types.
The more actionable data you can pull from these reports, the more you can learn about your followers. If you don’t have a blog, you can send out feedback forms to customers through email and ask them what kind of content they would like to see on your site. Use the responses to plan for content that will generate traffic when it goes live.
Readability is the factor that determines how simple it is for a user to navigate on your blog and read your content. Aside from the words you use, format, and design both play a role in determining the readability of your content.
It’s important to note that 3.7 billion people use smartphones, which means these people have a smaller screen and less space than a desktop user. You could miss out on a massive opportunity to generate leads and sales if you don’t optimize your UX for mobile users.
You can format for mobile and desktop readability by using headings, short paragraphs, and bullet point/numbered lists.
All of these features help your content appear tidy, which makes it easier to read. Consumers are usually unwilling to engage with a website if they have a hard time understanding their blog posts. They will get a couple of sentences in, and then they will end up contributing to your bounce rate.
Don’t forget to add essential features like a search bar to your blog. If someone lands on your site, they want to find what they are looking for fast, not sift through pages of content that they are not interested in reading. This statement holds especially true for mobile users, who tend to have less patience when compared to someone leisurely using their desktop PC.
Encourage User-Generated Content
People love the chance to get interact with their favorite content creators and brands. You can encourage more engagement on your blog by asking for more user-generated content. In a nutshell, user-generated content is a guest post, interview, or commentary submitted by users on your site.
When you allow for user guest posts, you open the door for many different types of engagement. First, you’re going to see the content creator sharing their post on their social media platforms, which helps spread brand awareness.
After their friends see that they submitted a post to a popular blog and got published, they may reach out to you because they have ideas of their own or something that they think may be worth publishing on your website.
Remember to establish clear guidelines if you want to start getting users to submit content to your website. There are a ton of people who are more than willing to present their ideas — even if they are not always relevant to your niche. The guidelines help you identify users with content your target audience might enjoy, as opposed to a spam post suggestion that has nothing to do with your industry or brand.
Use a Clear Call to Action
Your call to action consists of the thing you want the user to do when they are done reading your post. Examples of calls to action include:
Signing up for a newsletter
Following on social media
Buying a product
Downloading a lead magnet (ebook, checklist, etc.)
In almost every case, your call to action will be the thing that determines what the user does after reading your blog post. By creating a clear call to action, you can improve the way consumers interact with your blog.
For instance, if you want people to download your lead magnet, you’re going to have to convince them that signing up is worth their time. At the bottom of the blog, give users a brief description of the lead magnet, and most importantly, how it will benefit their lives.
Below the text, include a CTA button that says “Download for Free Now.” Use contrasting colors for your CTA background so it will catch the eyes of readers as they are browsing your post.
You may have to split test your CTA to determine the effectiveness of this strategy. Split testing, also known as A/B testing, is when you experiment with an aspect of your marketing strategy by making one small tweak to your existing formula. In this case, you might want to change to CTA text to read, “Get My FREE Book!” On the other hand, you might want to change the color background to see if a different contrasting color gets more engagement.
Split testing is a time-consuming process. You won’t be able to start one day and have precise results the following day. Take your time and let the data come in for a few weeks or even months before you make a decision about the CTA change.
Add Personalization to Your Blog
Personalization is another vital aspect of running an engaging blog. Sometimes it’s not enough to find a relevant post in the search bar. Instead, some users prefer to see new content suggestions at their fingertips. Plenty of businesses use this tactic, including Netflix, which focuses on show recommendations, and Amazon for product suggestions.
Though products and content vary, the principle remains the same. Once a user is done interacting with your brand, you have to give them a reason to stick around. Content personalization helps show users that you understand their needs, and want to help them address their pain points and meet their goals.
Additionally, personalization marketing with content can eventually lead to personalized product suggestions. Let’s say you own an online pet store that sells supplies like food and treats. If a user comes to your blog and reads an article about cats, you can recommend more posts to them at the bottom that fall under the cat category on your blog.
Once they read several posts, you can present the user with a lead magnet where you offer them a percentage off their first purchase of cat supplies. This level of personalization will draw the attention of many of your customers and help you build more engagement side-wide.
Spend Time on Social Media
If you want people to interact with your blog, you have to spend plenty of time on social media. There are over 3 billion users worldwide across all social media platforms, and many of them are potential leads.
Actively engaging with people on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram will help you build connections with people who may eventually become a customer. You can communicate with fans by answering questions, sharing compliments from fans, or by engaging with groups centered on your industry.
You should also share your blog posts on your social media account. Surveys show that 66% of marketers consistently share their blog posts across their social media account. Not only is there a better chance that you can generate more traffic and sales using this method, but you’ll also open up a platform for users to talk about what you wrote.
Your company blog is, without a doubt, one of the best ways to grow your business. Consumers can buy products from anyone, but high-quality, engaging content is the key to keeping people coming back for more.
As your business grows, you should regularly analyze your analytics, gather customer feedback, and create new content based on what you’ve learned. You’ll notice that trends come and go, and you can begin to capitalize on the hottest topics by learning about your target audience and writing blog posts that resolve pain points, entertain, inform, and encourage engagement.