5 Things to Make Your Business Blog Totally Kick A**

Blog Scrabble Tiles

I discover new blogs all the time, written by smart small business owners and marketers who understand that the world is changing and that their marketing tactics need to change with it.

I also see lots of mistakes, or things left unfinished. Here are a few tips to think about as you start down the path of blogging for your small business:

1. Do you have a Contact Form integrated into your blog or company website? This is the best way to capture leads and allow people who are interested in more information about you and the products and/or services you offer to contact you. Plus, it allows you to not only build a lead database but also to track your conversions.

2. Do you feature “Connect With Us” buttons that are easy to spot? If your business has a presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or elsewhere, by allowing your blog readers and/or website visitors to easily see and click those buttons, you encourage them to be a part of the communities you are building on those social media networks. Doesn’t that just make sense?

3. Do you utilize social sharing buttons, prominently displayed on your blog? I’m a fan of having sharing buttons at the top of each blog post and also at the bottom. If you don’t make it easy for your readers to share your content, guess what – they won’t! And isn’t that the whole point of the content you are creating — the fact that you’d love for it to be shared? And by the way, I’m also a big fan of the Apture toolbar, which is located at the top of a page – check it out on this blog – their stats are amazing and their customer service out of this world.

4. Comments! Comments are one of the most important elements of a blog and I find many blogs don’t allow them. A reader who cares enough about what you’ve written to leave a comment is a reader that you WANT. Don’t leave off this important element of your blog – and don’t forget to respond to all comments that your readers leave, even if they are comments that disagree with you.

5. Do you invite your readers to subscribe to your blog by BOTH an RSS feed and by Email? Email is still the most popular platform there is, so when you assume that people will prefer an RSS feed over an email subscription, you are sometimes making a fatal error. Do you have any idea how many of your readers and potential readers have no idea what an RSS feed is? Trust me, there are many. Adding an email subscription option is critical. And, guess what, it’s MY personal preference, too!

These are just five tips – and things I see often that new small business bloggers forget and/or overlook. There are many more great ideas and tips – and if you have some, we would all love to hear them. So go ahead, leave a comment. And, while you’re at it, subscribe to this blog – you know you wanna.

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  • http://twitter.com/erinlynn76 erinlynn76

    Great tips, as usual. I don't know what RSS really is, but will ask my blog guru to integrate it even though I do not have a biz blog.
    ;-)

  • http://ernohannink.com ernohannink

    Talking about comments. I see more and more blogs using Disqus. Do you experience slower loading of your site (comment section) because of Disqus?
    Love the post, great tips.

  • Mary

    Good, concrete information; thanks for that. Not blogging yet but have a few drafts. :-)

  • http://www.AlexGPR.com AlexanderG

    I oughta blog about this.

  • mmangen

    So glad you wrote this post ~ I've had one very, very similar brewing in my head for the longest time, especially on your points about Email Subscriptions and Social Buttons. Maybe I will still write mine and link to yours…… if you don't mind, of course!

  • ShellyKramer

    The Redhead always writes about things just as I'm thinking of them, Michelle. And I figure that's my fault for not writing more! Sigh. Of course I want you writing yours … it'll probably be better and include things that I've forgotten. Go do it. Now!!!!! xo

  • ShellyKramer

    Or just blog. In general. Heh heh heh.

  • ShellyKramer

    Mary, my best advice. Quit writing drafts and just put it out there. Launch, then tweak. If you wait until it's perfect, it'll never get there. That's the advice I got from my many mentors when I was dancing around blogging and I never forget it. It was great advice – get going, woman!! And holler if you need help!

  • ShellyKramer

    Erno, I love Disqus. A friend recommended it a long time ago, for a variety of reasons, and I've used it ever since. We also use it for all the websites/blogs that we design for our clients. No slowness in loading experienced at all. Let me know if you try it. And when are you writing a guest post for me?

  • ShellyKramer

    You need to call me Erin … I'll walk you through some of this stuff :))

  • Lucy

    Thanks for the info. I bookmarked the toolbar.

  • http://www.AlexGPR.com AlexanderG

    A topic comes to mind…

  • http://www.extremecreative.com.au Adriana Web Design

    Social connections. Very important for any blog or web site

  • http://ernohannink.com ernohannink

    Love to do a guest post for your blog.

  • http://www.redheadwriting.com The Redhead

    And, I'll add: post marketing. Y'know, your tweet doesn't have to match the blog title. Get fun. Get creative. Get quirky! Make people wanna click y'know? Great post, m'dear. *love*

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  • ShellyKramer

    Very true, sweets. And you are a master at that!

  • ShellyKramer

    You're on! (sorry for delay) (am loser) Write it, dude.

  • http://ernohannink.com ernohannink

    Did you get my email with guest post?

  • Sophielhoste

    As I read through your post, I was happy to see that @MichelleMangen made sure I had all of those on my new website from day one! Thanks for the checklist Shelly!

  • Www 1988728

    You’re so right, Elaine. And the destruction this lack of ability to get it right is beyond heartbreaking. A monumental disaster, for sure.

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