You’ve probably been hearing that you should start a blog. Blogging can be a great and effective way to establish yourself and your company as an authority and an industry leader. Since 81% of internet users trust the information that they get from blogs, it can also be a great way to build trust with your customers or potential customers. Putting out useful, high quality content tends to be a great way to show up in search results. Blog content is also highly shareable on social media, which means any given post always has the chance to spread around Facebook like wildfire and be a total game-changer for your company. All of these reasons add up to make blogging a crucial part of any effective content marketing strategy.
So yes, obviously, starting a blog is a good idea. But what might not be quite so obvious is where to put those blog posts once you write them. How are people going to look at them? Where are they going to find them? Here are some suggestions as to where you should post your quality content once you’ve written it and are looking to get it out there into the world.
Your Own Website
Okay, maybe this one seems like a no-brainer, but for a lot of people, starting a blog on their own site is not a simple, intuitive, or straight-forward task. Some people start blogs instead on public platforms like Blogger or Medium. Some people even go so far as to have their own blog which runs on a totally separate site from their main website because it’s easier to set up or they don’t want to make changes to their existing site structure.
Here’s the thing, though. One of the greatest benefits to starting a blog in the first place is the SEO and search rankings boost that putting great content out can provide to your site. If you publish your blog somewhere other than your main site, you are missing out on that benefit.
Aside from SEO, the ideal scenario with your blog involves people coming to your site to read the blog content – and then sticking around to check out the rest of what your business is doing. Yes, blogs that are published to external sites can and should link back to your site and can still be very useful for driving traffic, but it places one extra step between your audience and your business, which is always something you want to avoid if possible.
It’s important to promote your blog content on your own social media channels. However, be aware that there is a right way and a wrong way. The wrong way, for instance, would be copying and pasting an entire blog post onto Facebook. Granted, some people do use Facebook for longer posts, but generally we wouldn’t recommend it. Longer posts on Facebook that are successful tend to be more opinion-heavy than what your typical blog post might be, and also tend to be something fairly rare rather than a regular occurrence. Plus, you are far more likely to simply annoy your followers than to reap any sort of benefit. This is going to be especially true if you are trying to cram blog content onto a platform where it truly doesn’t belong, like Twitter or Instagram.
What you should do, however, is post about and promote links to your blog posts’ home on your website. This might include sharing a notable picture or graphic from the blog post, a small excerpt, summary, or even just a catch headline. The idea is to pique your social media followers’ interest enough to get them to click through to your blog (and as discussed above, thus find themselves on your main website).
Your newsletter subscribers are generally going to be some of your best and most reliable audience members when it comes to people who are likely to be interested in the content that you are creating. There are a lot of ways you can take advantage of that.
What you probably don’t want to do (again, right way and wrong way here) is take your blog content, copy, and paste it into a newsletter, then blast that to your subscribers. (Catching a theme here?)
But newsletter subscribers tend to have a deeper interest in what is going on in your business. If they’ve ended up on your list by good and honest means, they’ve already made a decision to maintain a higher engagement with your company. So, a great way to reward them is with bonus or exclusive content. Perhaps you have more to say about a topic than you were willing to put in a public blog post. Or maybe there is an interesting story behind the research or writing of that post and how it came to be, which you might consider sharing with your newsletter list. Maybe there is video or audio commentary that goes along with some of your blog content. With a little creative thinking, there are lots of ways you can expand upon your regular blog posts to provide a little something more for newsletter subscribers.
Standalone Blogging Platforms
Just because your blog’s main home should be on your own website and not on an external blogging platform, doesn’t mean that these platforms don’t have their uses. Sites like Tumblr, Blogger and Medium are great places to also post your blog content, which then leads back to your site.
In addition to being free, these platforms function both as blog aggregators and social networks of their own, which can provide real added benefits. Medium sends out a daily digest to its users of articles that they might find interesting. Tumblr is highly sharing oriented and has a very dedicated core group of users. In addition to offering many sharing integrations on all of the major social networks, people tend to search these sites for new content, using them as a major engine for content discovery.
Other Online Publishers/Magazines
Lastly, in addition to your own sites and channels that you control, a great place to try and post your excellent blog content is with online publications. Sites from Forbes, to Wired to Huffington Post will frequently publish guest posts from writers and bloggers all across the web. If you can find an online publication (or section of an online publication) that is relevant to your business and the kind of content you are writing, it is worth trying to make that connection and seeing if they have any interest. Try to start out with a particularly unique, original or thought-provoking piece so as to give yourself the best chance of attracting interest. And don’t get discouraged if you get a lot of rejections at first. Most online publications get inundated with these kinds of requests, and tend to be very selective.
Need help with your content strategy or implementing a marketing plan that is right for your business? Contact us today!