What do you mean start a blog? I asked for SEO.

By Wednesday October 13th, 2010

3 ways that setting up a corporate blog can get website traffic and increase customer engagement.

We get calls about it all the time – a potential customer asks if we can land them on the first page of Google, perhaps thinking we can control the whims of Google’s search engine with a few lines of code or an incantation over a black cauldron. Invariably, they grow confused and indignant when asked what keywords they want to show up on the first page for, resisting recommendations that include visible changes to their website. They especially aren’t interested in adding pages full of keyword heavy content to the site; who has time to write that stuff anyway? What they really want is to get more website traffic. My best advice to these proactive entrepreneurs is to start a blog. Here’s why:

1) SEO – Nothing is better for a website’s SEO than adding lots of informative content that is industry or service related. Writing a short blog entry that explains some of your business’ finer points is a great way to attract those interested in your products or services. It’s amazing how effectively an article full of blog tips can attract people who search for “how to write a blog.” Similarly, a blog or website that becomes a wealth of information on Internet marketing techniques and practices will tend to attract people searching for a marketing expert. Why swim against the current of Google’s search algorithm when you can just play to its intent of providing users exactly what they’re looking for?

2) Let’s give ‘em something to talk about – Aside from search engine traffic (and those who type the URL straight into the address bar), a site’s most important metric is referral traffic, that is, users who click a link to your site from some other location. Whether it’s from your Facebook page or a link from a partner company’s website, your best tool for drawing these inbound clicks is to have content that your target audience wants to read/watch/listen to. So, start a blog, write an entry about using organic, garden fresh ingredients in your recipes and post a link on your restaurant’s Facebook fan page. At Brolik, we nearly doubled the number of referral clicks to our website with just this technique. They weren’t bounces either, the users stayed on our site for an average of several minutes because they were actually reading the article. Write really good stuff and you’ll find that other blog websites will use or link to the content, giving you even more avenues for referral clicks. What better target audience for our web and interactive focused content than those who regularly read a well known technology blog like Mashable or Engadget?

3) Blogging for PR– A corporate blog can be the most direct, open line of communication with customers and the rest of your industry. It’s long been the territory of a PR firm to help establish corporate credibility with careful placement of press releases and articles in well known industry periodicals and resources. Now you can take control of your own destiny, forming a professional reputation for being on top of your industry with the newest ideas and tools. A lot of trust and respect comes with being the authority on topics related to your industry so make sure people feel this security with your brand. Conversely, the openness of communication that creating a blog allows can be a great way to show a little personality. Where more formal means of communication may obligate you to write with a straight face, your blog gives an opportunity to open up and live a little, forming a more human relationship with your readers.

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About the Author

Matthew is a partner and Chief Strategy Officer at Brolik. As CSO, he manages the digital marketing team, helping Brolik’s roster of clients achieve their online marketing goals. When he’s not coming up with his next big campaign idea, you might find him in the recording studio or enjoying an IPA with a funny name. Check him out on Twitter.