When determining how to connect with an audience in the modern world, it's difficult to beat the versatility and efficiency of blogging. The importance of having a blog is undeniable ... it can be used for marketing, business development, informational/educational reasons, and more. Business blogging is an excellent way to showcase your company in a more laid-back light, which is exactly what today's audiences are looking for.
The benefits of business blogging become clear soon after you start posting great content. Consider the following:
Search engine optimization (SEO) is very important. Getting your site to show up at the top of a Google search can make all the difference in the world in terms of bringing more people to your website. A larger audience often means more clients and customers.
If there's one thing about business blogging that truly makes a difference, it's that it can dramatically improve SEO with the right campaign. It's as easy as creating great content and posting it at the right time. This brings more people to your blog, and when you're consistent with when and how you post, it doesn't take long for people to start noticing your progress. Improved SEO is an easily-noticeable benefit of regular blogging.
For new businesses, building a web presence can be a struggle. Often, it can cost thousands of dollars to build a well-designed website, not to mention the associated costs of hosting and other fees. Creating a low-cost web presence is essential for those who don't have deep pockets to spend on high-end design, and there are plenty of ways to do it.
Blogging is an excellent vehicle for building a web presence, and the fact that it costs far less than the alternatives makes it very enticing for start-ups and other small businesses. Business blogging software lets you approach a vast audience without having to spend an arm and a leg ... and it's as easy as coming up with great content and posting it to the web. Once ideas start flowing, the rest writes itself.
Bringing in new business is something that everyone in the professional sphere tries to do on a regular basis, and it's a challenging process when the right approach is not embraced. Some believe that a "salesy" approach will be effective in getting the job done, but more often than not, this does nothing but alienate potential clients and customers. It's essential to adapt with the times, and those who don't take care to meet the needs of the modern consumer will not get very far.
Today, everyone is searching the web for great content and using the Internet to consume information. If you can provide content that will draw people to your blog and also help them in the long-run, you'll already be one step ahead of the game. This is a big part of content marketing.
Most CEOs and managers know that employee engagement makes a huge difference when it comes to productivity and efficiency. Finding ways to improve employee engagement, however, isn't always as easy as most people would like.
It's important to focus on the benefits of business blogging when it comes to marketing and customer retention. What often goes overlooked, however, is how much of a positive impact it can have on employee engagement within your organization. When employees are tasked with writing blog posts, they can't help but remain as focused as possible throughout the process. Task an employee with writing a few blog posts per week, and you'll no doubt see an increase in engagement.
It's easy to view blogging as a way to provide the public with information and opinionated viewpoints ... in this way, business blogging is much like the media. Most people start a blog because they have something to say, and no matter what the results, that initial urge to provide beneficial content to the public remains. One thing that blogs can be used for is the development of new ideas and solutions.
A company's ideas and solutions are extremely important, as they can lead to the creation of new products and services. Creating ideas and solutions is best done in conjunction with your audience, and this is what many business owners don't take into consideration. When you post thought-provoking content, your audience will no doubt respond with comments, which can serve to create a new discussion entirely.
Building a brand is a long-term goal for many businesses, and it can take time to know your organization has its very own voice and image. Brand identity is the kind of thing that is best established through the web, especially for companies looking to appeal to a wide-reaching audience. It should stand to reason, then, that business blogging is one of the most efficient tools for establishing brand identity.
Establishing brand identity through blogging is something that happens organically as you build your collection of posts. Many people find that the more consistently they blog, the faster their business begins to take shape. In a world where competition runs rampant, the importance of creating a strong brand identity is something that should never be overlooked.
If there's one thing that gets in the way of businesses achieving their goals, it's choosing business blogging software that is sufficient for their needs. There are many platforms to choose from, and many happen to lack the features that modern businesses need to reach audiences and get their point across. As a result, it's essential to find a platform that will serve you and your business well, and social intranet software is typically the best option you'll find.
Social intranet software, like Communifire, allows even those with limited tech knowledge to communicate their message through blogs and wiki posts ... pulling together every necessary feature they may need to write posts quickly and efficiently. Understanding how these features can take your business blogging to the next level is crucial, and it's not difficult to put into perspective.
The following are the 7 most essential features that every great business blogging platform should include, all of which are present in Communifire.
Keeping up with the posts being made to your blog is essential. This is especially true for companies that manage many blogs and upload hundreds of posts per month ... as wading through this massive amount of content can become exhausting over time. A great intranet blogging platform needs a feature that allows you to view the most recent posts ... as this is one of the only ways to ensure that you're not posting duplicate content to your blog.
When you blog with Communifire, you always know what's going on and when it's happening. This is due to the software's penchant for showing the most recently made posts as soon as you log into the blogging space. Information such as the date and time the post is made, who it is made by, and who might be listed as a contributor can all be seen, taking all guesswork out of the situation. The result is a highly manageable blog that is more efficient than any other platform on the market.
It would be great if everyone in your business knew how to write HTML code, but chances are they don't. HTML can be extremely useful when properly written, but tasking those unfamiliar with coding to handle HTML is never a good idea. It's essential, then, that your business blogging platform have an editing system that is easily approachable for laymen ... and there's no better option than a WYSIWYG editor.
Communifire's intranet blogging platform is centered around a WYSIWYG editor that allows you to add images and videos, format text, and more without the need to know HTML. Creating, tagging and publishing posts is so easy that anyone should be able to do it without issue. In this regard, a training session is always a good idea once you've decided to implement intranet blogging software.
When your staff is regularly posting content to your blog, the ability for both users and admins to manage posts becomes extremely important. After all, there's nothing worse than letting content enter your blog that might misrepresent your organization, especially if it is heavily-read. A business blogging platform without a robust admin and user management system should be avoided.
Managing blog posts is a breeze with Communifire, and both users and admins have their own unique sets of permissions. Users can change blog names, categories, and other aspects of a post when given the proper permissions, while intranet administrators always maintain authority over what occurs within the social community. Multiple levels of control mean that everyone has exactly the features they need to get the most out of the platform — managing blogs has never been so easy.
If you truly want to get the most out of writing blog posts, you need a platform that includes a commenting system. Comments can make or break a blog, and the best posts elicit comments from readers, which can often be the beginning of an entirely new conversation. New ideas and solutions can result, and everyone involved ends up benefitting.
When you create blog posts in Communifire, readers can easily comment, "like" or "dislike" (optionally), and even rate content, which makes the experience far more interactive. Communifire's intranet blogging software opens up a discussion that can last far longer than the initial "buzz period" of the post, and the more your audiences takes advantage of the commenting system, the more good the post will do for your business. The commenting system in Communifire also includes a "captcha" feature that ensures spam and other unwanted comments are kept off of your blog, allowing you to keep both your business and your audience secure from any potential threats.
As with anything else, your business blog is only going to be as effective as how many people end up reading it. Sharing and distributing blog posts can be a time-consuming, exhausting experience when you don't have the right tools ... and many of today's platforms (even those which are popular) don't include features that make sharing posts easier. Business blogging shouldn't be difficult, but platforms that don't allow for easy sharing make things more challenging than they have to be.
Communifire allows you to share and distribute your blog posts both internally and externally. This ensures that your audience of potential clients and customers is clued-into what's going on ... as well as your staff. Sharing is as easy as clicking a button, and there's no need to juggle links and send out emails just to get eyes on your blog posts.
You need to track the performance of your blog to get a sense of what it's doing for your business. Performance means many different things, including how your blog posts are translating to your audience, which topics are most popular, and which types of posts don't do your business any favors. Once you analyze the performance of your blog over a set period of time, understanding how you can benefit from business blogging instead of lagging behind becomes much clearer.
Not all business blogging software allows you to keep track of who is reading your posts, but Communifire ensures you always have a strong idea of how your blog is performing. Tracking the number of people who view your blog is easy, allowing you to know what should be done (if anything) to push your company's blogging strategy in a forward direction.
No matter how proficient you and your staff are with using today's software, it's important to know that you have good customer service on your side when you need it. The right customer service can make all the difference in the world, and you need to know that you're able to access it on a dime. The days in which waiting on hold for hours at a time to speak to a human don't jive with the modern approach to business and productivity.
Central to Communifire is the notion that there's nothing more important than providing the best customer service possible. Getting answers is as simple as asking questions via the software itself, which means you don't need to multitask and log into a specific portal for customer service. Best of all, Communifire's documentation is readily available at all times, which means those who need to troubleshoot during a busy project at late hours have will always have in front of them the information they need.
Finding business blogging software that combines all the necessary features for success can be a trying experience, especially if you go into the process without knowing what to look for. With Communifire's intranet business blogging platform, any and all issues associated with poorly-designed blogging platforms disappear entirely, leaving you and your staff feeling on top of your game.
Tim is president and co-founder of Axero Solutions, a leading intranet software vendor. He's also a bestselling author of Who the Hell Wants to Work for You? Mastering Employee Engagement. Tim’s been featured in Fortune, Forbes, TIME, Inc Magazine, Entrepreneur, CNBC, Today, and other leading publications.
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