If you’re a business operating online, it won’t have escaped your attention that a single word is often used in relation to online marketing. This word is ‘Content.’For general purposes, ‘content’ is a somewhat ambiguous term that can be applied to varying forms of media. From infographics to photography and blog posts, interesting content in your market is now a surefire indicator to search engines that you’re a valuable resource.So you’re a retailer/business that knows its market and you have the ability to write or publish some good, interesting content. But where do you turn? The best way to syndicate content.yourself is to build a corporate blog. Simple enough to set-up, a blog usually sits in a subdomain of your site and helps build authority by offering guides, inside information and other great knowledge to your audience.If you don’t have a blog or you’re not updating your ancient set-up and publishing regular content, you’re missing out on potentially huge link-building, authority-gaining exercises. Below are some of my top tips when creating a company blog.
1. Use a proven self-hosted platform. WordPress is the most common blogging platform, seen throughout the web and used by both tiny and enormous companies alike. WordPress offers both a.com and.org subdomain, but the one you’re after is.org. Here, you can download the software and then install it to your domain. (It takes very little to do this but if you’re truly technically incompetent, you can find freelancers who’ll do this for very little.) Self-hosting your own blog means you get all the ‘link-juice’ if you’re linked to or shared. It also gives you control over your platform and allows you to choose a custom theme and decide on every aspect of your blog.2. Purchase a premium theme or hire a coder to make a great looking blog. The unfortunate truth is that people will ignore great written content if your blog looks awful. If you heeded tip number 1 you’ll have a self-hosted WordPress installation, so you can purchase a ‘premium theme.’ This is a theme that changes the entire look of your blog and is fully customisable. The helpful thing about a premium theme is that you can generally ask a question directly to the theme author, making it easy to resolve bugs or issues and to get it looking exactly the way you want it to.3. Write interesting content. As a company, you should have valuable insights to share with whoever reads your blog. Whether it be news, guides, information or inside knowledge, you need to be sharing it on your blog. Top 5/10 lists are always well received. Keep things short and try not to always sell. A blog article should entertain and/or inform before it should sell.I’m currently working on a company blog for a small retailer. In its initial stages I have been guilty of a few flat posts to strengthen and ‘fill’ the blog, such as product news etc. However, I’ve also written some interesting articles and handy information guides that have done well on social media and sharing sites.4. Fact-check, spell check and source images correctly. In an age of copyright law and copy and paste, you need to be sure you credit images used and make sure you have permission to use them. Sites like Flickr’s creative commons and wikimedia are great for free imagery as long as you link and give credit. Otherwise you need to turn to Shutterstock and other paid image banks. Any copy you write should be fact and spell-checked to make sure you’re not getting anything wrong.
5. Share your articles with your connected universe. This one is vital. In the infancy of your blog, you’ll struggle to gain readers. Make sure after you post an article you’re sharing it to get maximum attention. The goal is to produce content everyone wants to read/share. However, the internet is fickle and you can’t always achieve that. Instead, make sure you do as much as you can. Share every article across your social media channels, submit them to sites like Reddit, Digg, StumbleUpon etc. Share, share, share.I hope you enjoyed these tips. A company blog should have a purpose. It shouldn’t be an empty shell to try and adapt to content marketing. Instead, it should inform, entertain and educate and paint an inside picture of your business.