4 Basic Ingredients to Feed Your Company’s Blog

Blogs are powerful tools to for generating business. However, they do little good without regular, useful content.

Many businesses struggle with this. They have grand intentions, but are stuck on what to write.

If this sounds like you, I’ve offered up four basic types of blog content that you should be writing to help you get your juices flowing:

How-To Articles

What do you do when you are looking for answers for something?

You Google it.

Now, wouldn’t it be great if your blog turned up articles with the exact answers to the questions people are asking?

That’s possible when you write how-to articles focused on helping your target audience solve their problems.

This approach helps you showcase your expertise and gives people the ability to get a taste of what it would be like to work with you. It also positions you as a trusted resource, which helps open the door for someone to buy.

Tools & Resources

Offering up lists of tools, apps or resources that make life better or easier is a simple way to help your readers.

For instance, if you’re a financial planner, you can recommend your favorite software for managing your finances. Realtors can profile the best home search apps on the market. Trainers or nutritionists can offer up the best tools for tracking your workouts and meals.

Get the idea?

If it helps, here’s an example of one I wrote that offers tools I use to curate content to share online.

Case Studies & Customer Stories

Success stories from clients and customers are a great way to demonstrate your capabilities. And, because you’re featuring this information from the customer’s point of view, it removes the stigma of overt selling.

For example, Clio, an online legal practice management software, does a nice job of this with their regular “#GoneClio” series. In these blog posts, they conduct a Q&A with their customers, asking questions about their legal practice, why those chose Clio, what they like about it and how they use technology in their legal practice.

Essentially, this series answers all of the questions a potential buyer would have when trying to decide on a software solution. It’s a brilliant way to sell your business without being overtly promotional.

Promotional Posts

Because you’re blogging for business, it’s important to promote your product or services through your blog.

However, let me be clear, I’m not advocating for overt sales messages. Instead, I recommend you write a how-to post where your product or service is the answer.

For instance, the folks at Copyblogger are the masters of this. They take the time to understand the reader’s problem, tell you how to fix it and then artfully offer up their solution as the answer. Here’s a great example.

It’s important to remember to use these posts sparingly. If all you’re doing is selling, people will tune out in a hurry.

This list just scratches the surface – what kinds blog posts would you add to the list? Which content type works best for you?

This post originally appeared as guest article for the Nashville Business Journal.

Image credit: Jonathon Colman

About Laura Click

Laura Click is founder and CEO of Blue Kite Marketing, a Nashville-based integrated marketing firm. In addition to being the lead blogger on the Blue Kite blog, Laura is a proud Mizzou alum, avid runner and dog lover. You can connect with Laura on Twitter at @lauraclick, on LinkedIn or Google Plus.

  • ShakirahDawud

    When you mentioned GoneClio, I thought of another great way to feed a blog: series/theme posts! I have a few that I return to off and on. They can be on topics that highlight a specialty or expertise of a business, and therefore don’t take much prep time.

    • http://flybluekite.com Laura Click

      YES! Themes are a great way to have regular content and make it easy for businesses to no have to think so hard about what to come up with. I do that with my round up posts. Or, you can do it by topic as you mentioned. Great addition!

  • http://twitter.com/Soulati Jayme Soulati

    Is that pepperoni?

    • http://flybluekite.com Laura Click

      Why yes it is! I figured if I was going to talk about ingredients, I might as well pick a picture with good ones! :)

  • http://dannybrown.me/ Danny Brown

    What I like about Copyblogger is their adherence to quality. Both Brian and Sonia themselves proof and edit, and that comes across in the quality of posts there. Something any media creation / curation service could do to emulate.

    Cheers!

    • http://flybluekite.com Laura Click

      Totally agree! Brian and Sonia are a class act – there’s a reason Copyblogger is considered one of the best blogs in the world!

  • http://bestoked.blogspot.com Luke Stokes

    Great post, Laura! I love how you’ve made this topic so simple and given some great examples to drive it home. Thank you!

    • http://flybluekite.com Laura Click

      So glad you liked it, Luke! I’ll just try not to think about the fact that you’re reading and commenting surrounded by monkeys and beaches! ;)

      • http://bestoked.blogspot.com Luke Stokes

        :) Now that we’re here, I’m realizing it’s not so crazy after all. I’m already thinking about where else we might be able to go. With Skype/Google+ Hangouts and the like, you can serve your customers with excellence from anywhere. That may seem insane, but give it some time. I think you guys will have plenty of adventures of your own, now that you run your own show.

        • http://flybluekite.com Laura Click

          Ain’t technology, grand?! :) It’s really amazing what’s possible. I’m so excited for you!

          My work is definitely not location dependent, so I could take off like you and work from the jungle. The problem is that Garth’s work is not. Until they find a way to do virtual “lawyering”, we probably can’t work out of the country – or even the state. Though, I do agree that we’ll have many more adventures since we both run our own shows!