So, you started a blog to boost your company’s profile and support your marketing efforts but it’s not generating any interest or leads?

Guess what – it’s probably your own fault.

Often people rush to post something without really thinking through the message they want to convey. They see it as a win if they quickly churn out a piece of content and share it on a blog or LinkedIn, or both. But if that content isn’t built on a strong strategic foundation, it could actually be detrimental to long-term marketing efforts.

If this sounds like you, don’t worry. The problem is fixable, if you follow these five simple tips to stop sabotaging yourself:

1. Understand why you’re writing. Start by setting your goals – why do you want to establish a blog and what do you want to achieve with it? If you’ve thought through your objectives, then you can adapt as needed – and measure success – as you go along.

2. Know what you want to say. What is the overarching story you want to tell? What do you want readers to understand about you, your business or your products? Write that down in the form of three or four short, clear, specific messages, backed up with examples or third-party testimonials. Then keep those messages in mind and be sure to include at least one any time you are writing an individual post. But don’t use a boilerplate message over and over; instead, aim to get the concept of your message across using different words each time.

3. Get organized. Map out an editorial calendar to guide you as you create content over the coming months. Include the topics you plan to write about, as well as the dates and the platforms you plan to post on, if you’re intending to share content beyond your own website. If you’re stumped, you can connect topics to certain times of year, such as small business week, major conferences or even holidays, to ensure you won’t run out of ideas – and content – as time goes on.

4. Put yourself in your readers’ shoes. Don’t be self-serving. Nobody wants to read about how great you are. Focus on your customers. What are their pain points and how do you help to solve those problems? What are your perspectives on issues in the industry? This isn’t the place for overt sales. It should be all about delivering value to your reader. Your B2B customers have myriad demands on their time and attention, and it’s easy for them to skip your content if it doesn’t speak to them.

5. Write well. Colourful, interesting, lively language belongs in B2B marketing. Good grammar and spelling are essential, too. Don’t try to write specifically for SEO optimization by packing in a bunch of keywords. Write something that people will actually want to read, using real language and no jargon. If you’re not a writer, hire one with experience who knows your industry and has a style you like.

Remember: writing individual blog posts without messaging or a strategy does nothing to help your marketing efforts. Instead, be organized, relevant and readable, and you will find that you end up with something worth sharing – and your customers and prospects will finally take notice.

This article was published on B2B News Network in July 2019