Thought of the day: “All of us need to understand the importance of branding. We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called YOU.”
Now that 2015 is officially here, it’s always interesting to look back on what’s changed in recent years. While just about everything you can think of online has evolved in at least some way over the last five years, blogging stands out as a medium that has really gone through a renaissance.
If you stop and look back to just a few years ago, you’ll likely remember that mainstream business acceptance of blogging was still quite low. But as more businesses started to see real results from their investments in blogging, it became clear that this form of content had progressed far beyond online journals for individuals.
Fast forward to the present, and blogging has become a standard method of online publishing for a significant percentage of businesses. While it’s great that more businesses have seen how they can benefit from consistently delivering great content to their target audiences, the huge increase in content has created some new challenges.
Businesses Have to Step Up Their Blogging Game
It wasn’t that long ago when simply keeping a blog active was enough to give a business a significant competitive advantage in regards to both search engine rankings and successfully executing a social media strategy. But now that so many businesses have embraced blogging as a channel for increasing search engine traffic and making the most of social media marketing, competition levels have greatly risen.
As a result of this increase in competition, not only are businesses investing in things like social media training, but they’re also looking for ways to optimize their blogging efforts. One area that has received a lot of focus is content length. As a result of different case studies and theories about Google’s updates, many businesses feel that they need to produce content that hits a certain word count goal. Whether it’s 500 words or 1,200 words, businesses often get tunnel vision in regards to what really determines the quality of a blog post.
Focus on Value Instead of Length
While word count goals can serve as a guide for people just getting into the swing of writing for online audiences, this metric isn’t really the one that blogging efforts should be optimized around. The reason that obsessing over word count isn’t really all that productive is different topics deserve and require varying amounts of detail.
Since there is definitely value in trying to optimize business blogging efforts, a better approach is to focus on finding ways to identify exactly what an audience wants to read. And then whenever a post is published on one of those topics, its goal should be to provide as much value about that topic as possible. This approach ensures that regardless of how long or short a post ends up being, readers will feel that the post really delivered on its title. This positive feeling will lead to a greater number of people wanting to spend more time on a company’s site, which in turn will increase new online leads or customers.
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