Forbes lists nine reasons why you should have a blog, but they can be summed up with one overarching reason: a blog is your best marketing tool. It serves as your resume, demonstrates your marketing content and gives your consumer base a glimpse into your values and personality. However, business blogging means nothing if no one reads it. This is where search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing come into play.
There are around one hundred search engines in operation, but Google is the king of them all. Not too long ago, search results were dependent on your ability to use Boolean search parameters. The plus and minus signs, greater than and less than symbols, and the copious use of parenthesis made an Internet search look like an algebra equation.
Google changed this with the development of search algorithms. Google’s Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird algorithms transformed the way you can find a website. It is important to understand that these algorithms rank your blog and your interface with the searcher to create a match. This is why you need to use search engine optimization (SEO) and keyword strategies.
When working on your blog’s content, you have to balance laying out a well thought out marketing message and controlling the words you want search engines to recognize. Keywords are the part of your text that you have control over. For example, on March 15, 2015, the two top searches on Google were primaries and Dairy Queen free cone day. The first topic gave a list of thousands of near equally relevant results, whereas the second led you directly to the coupon for the fast food company.
As you create your blogging content, have a list of three to five keywords that are specific to your target market, and then use those words naturally a couple of times per post.
…But People Count More
SEO is the framework for a searchable blog post, but the most important part is whether or not people are reading it. And Google knows this. The algorithm understands that fresh, impactful content is king, so it looks for new content creation and the engagement it has with readers. Blog content with a lot of page views, shares and comments rank higher on the search list. Fresh content that reaches a set of loyal, regular readers are marked positive in the Hummingbird algorithm because it was created to automate the natural tendencies of humans to find what they like.
One great, insightful piece every week will draw in more readers than three poor pieces. When you place all of the SEO hype and computer mathematics to the side, the traditional rules still apply: the best way to get readers is to write something worth reading.