Blog posts serve many purposes for a business or organization. They provide current and prospective clients or customers with information that can assist with their decision making. It’s an avenue to share some brand personality and showcase specific employees within the organization, allowing target audience members to feel more “connected”.
From an SEO perspective, blog posts provide an additional opportunity to target keywords, specifically long tail keyword variations that will generate traffic from the search engines. Blog posts are also an integral part of a social media campaign. Sharing blog posts in social media helps to keep the account active and stimulates social activity which is tied back into the search algorithm.
Of course all of this is great and serves the purpose of gaining the attention of both the search engines and target audience members, but ultimately what do you want a visitor to your blog (and website) to do? You want them to take some sort of action! A business website should be a lead generation tool, and every blog post that you write and publish should assist in that effort. Getting traffic to your site that reads your blog posts is beneficial, but getting a blog reader to take that additional step is really the prize that you are searching for.
One of our tips for business bloggers is to write blog posts that are purely informational, as opposed to promotional. What does that mean? Well, it means writing a post that provides target audience members with information that they are looking for or answering questions that they have without mentioning your services or products specifically. It’s an indirect way to sell yourself. You aren’t making a sales pitch directly, but by showcasing your knowledge and expertise in a specific industry you will be thought of as a trusted resource and therefore more likely to make a sale when the time is right.
So how do you write blog posts that are lead generation tools if they aren’t promoting what you sell? The key is to make the most of the web page real estate that surrounds your blog post. The first item to include is a call to action somewhere on the blog post page. It shouldn’t take away from the blog post content, but it should be there. It could be a button that says “Click here to learn more about our services” or “Call 555-4321 to speak with our sales team”.
Different websites have different site conversion goals. If you want a website visitor to download a recent whitepaper, include a call to action like “Like this blog post? Download our whitepaper to learn more”. If you have a form on your site for a visitor to contact you or to sign up for your newsletter, it should be on every page of the site including on every blog post page.
Whatever action you want someone to take when they land on your site, be sure to point it out to them! No need to by shy about it. Don’t assume that people will click around your website to figure out a way to get in touch. Have the information right there. If you have a great writing team and are actively posting and sharing content in social media, it’s likely that it’s your blog post pages that are going to be getting the most attention. Make the most of these pages by turning blog posts into lead generation tools.