Your blog is a powerful marketing tool in its own right. But it's a long-term marketing tool, more of a process than a tactic. Eventually, a blog can be your greatest marketing asset, generating new leads every day on its own – but it takes a little marketing of its own in the beginning.
Let It Be Known
The greatest benefit of a business blog is that it creates customer trust and loyalty – but people have to read it for that to happen.
If you already have a customer email list, send out an announcement that you're now blogging! Highlight the benefits of reading your blog, the types of advice and tips they'll find in it. The same goes for your homepage, your Twitter feed, your Facebook page, and your print and in-store advertising.
Tell everyone who will listen about your blog, and your subscription numbers will rise. They might be small at first, and they might rise slowly, but if you consistently post valuable, engaging information, you'll have a large, loyal following.
Joining the Blogosphere
If you want to blog successfully, you have to read successful blogs. Read, comment, get involved in the ongoing conversation happening in "the blogosphere." Look for popular blogs in your industry or related fields and start following their posts. Check out the reader comments and see what people respond to most.
By actively engaging with other bloggers, you'll get some great post ideas, and you'll see what makes a blog effective and engaging. You'll learn to appreciate blogging's power to enable interactions between a business and its customers. Best of all, you'll probably get to know some pretty great people.
Guest blogging is a powerful way to boost your subscription rates. This includes being a guest blogger and inviting a guest blogger. Many bloggers are happy to trade blog posts, increasing each others reader base significantly. Popular bloggers got that way because they understand the power of building relationships. Reach out to other bloggers, particularly the influential ones, to quickly boost your base.
Make It Easy to Subscribe
No matter how much you market your blog, if people can't easily subscribe to it then they won't. It's as simple as that. You must make it easy for people to subscribe to your blog via the most popular feed readers (RSS or Atom) and through email.
Make your subscription links prominent in your blog design and triple check to make sure they're set up properly and that they work! Your subscription links should appear on every page of your blog and even in the footer of each blog post.
Make It Easy to Share
Generating new leads is one of the main benefits of blogging. Make it easy for, and encourage, your readers to share and save posts they like. Not only will your readership rise, your search engine rankings will rise and your income.
Next up, you'll work on setting some goals for your business blog.