There are many many reference sources on how corporate blogs become successful. At the end of the day, companies need to realize that behind every blog is a person.
People write blogs, and people read blogs.
When a company is writing a blog, there are basic elements to consider. These stand true for a brand new blog in planning and strategy phases or an existing blog with six months under the belt.
Tips for Successful Corporate Blogging
Team and Tone. When blogging for the company, ensure the team is solid. Typically, there are three good writers to assist with the company blog and one good editor to establish tone. It becomes apparent when someone writes drastically differently than peers on the company blog. Try to ensure there’s a solid thread between each writer so tone isn’t a swinging pendulum.
Topics. Company blogging runs the risk of being inside-out only. If a goal is to build a community of those who comment and follow, then be sure topics are engaging and invite others to connect and participate. If a corporate blog posts three times weekly, make sure 1/3 of the content is about external factors shaping the industry.
Goals. Like any new program, there needs to be clearly defined goals. Without that distinct purpose and consistent reference back to the goals, a corporate blog can go astray. Do not take goal setting lightly! This exercise drives success, growth, authority, and brand positioning.
Analytics. Behind every successful blog is a person and also good tracking! Without knowledge of how many people are visiting a company blog, there is no proof it’s working. Typically, companies cannot gauge success of a blog on comments alone; people lurk and refuse to add thoughts on a corporation’s blog. This means analytics are critical and someone to interpret them even more.
Bells and Whistles. There are basic elements every blog needs regardless of whether it’s a personal or business blog. Set up a decent commenting system with Livefyre or Disqus. Use Shareaholic, the best social media sharing tool on the channels. Add a way to organize archives via categories and chronology via widgets in the sidebar. Consider Zemanta which helps put other like-topics at the blogger’s fingertips to share beneath a post. Use images owned by the company. There are so many issues now with copyrights; companies need to develop their own image library for use online everywhere.
RSS and Social Media Follows. Regardless of how small a company blog is when it starts, having an RSS feed (Feedblitz is reliable) as well as social media follow buttons are critical. Every company has a LinkedIn page and ought to have a Google+ page, too. Start there and the rest will follow.
Subscribe Button. Capturing emails is the name of the game, but what will you offer in return? If people know they’ll get some decent content either on the blog or via a newsletter or other marketing collateral, they will give up their email address. Company blogs need to have this option readily available from the start. Little bit late to the party? No worries…add it and write!
SEO Pack. Blogs need to ensure articles are depicted appropriately and headlines aren’t too long. Using SEO Pack or Yoast are simple plugins to help streamline this without too much thought.
Which basic elements does your company blog have? Please share!
About Jayme Soulati
Jayme Soulati is author of Soulati-’TUDE! which is a professional blog oriented to social media, marketing, PR, business strategy, and more. She is president of Soulati Media, Inc. and is an award-winning blogger and public relations practitioner. She is a past president of the Publicity Club of Chicago.