Pick any random small business and you’ll see them doing some egregious but avoidable small business blogging mistakes. Most business owners look for guidance but several marketers and agencies either don’t even do the basics or try to implement “way too much”.
Entrepreneurs won’t get anywhere blogging is overdone, when your content strategy is half-baked, or do nothing at all.
When it comes to small business blogging, it’s critical to draw a balance. I’ve been working to help implement blogging strategy (and sustainable content marketing strategies for businesses) for several years now (counting to more than a decade now).
Here are some of the most common blogging mistakes I see several small businesses do all the time.
Creating Perfect Blog Posts [ Focusing way too much on grammar?]
I keep repeating myself (bear with me), but tell me this: when you talk to your friends, do you keep checking yourself for grammar? When you think in your head, do you keep thinking about commas, periods, active voice, and passive voice?
Why do you strive to create that elusive and “perfect” blog posts focusing so much on grammar? Who told you that you’d need to use big words or clever writing?
Several studies prove that the average reading level of the typical web user is around 7th-grade. Anything more than that, you severely cripple content consumption.
If it weren’t for the habit, you could produce and publish blog posts faster. You could have a publishing velocity that works for your business, delivers great SEO results, and helps you stay on track of your digital marketing plan.
The content writers you hire and the teams working to help digital marketing work for your business would have more room to think creatively and work on a content production schedule that works for your business.
You ain’t writing a novel. It’s not a scientific journal that you are writing. You aren’t aiming for the Pulitzer.
Kick the perfection habit. It’s slowing you down to the point of no return.
The super-long blog posts [ Why? Says Who?]
You could have your blog posts rank even if you publish blog posts that just around 550 to 750 words. So, why do you always need to aim for 1500-word blog posts? Or worse, why do you spend time (and resources) creating 2000-word posts or even gigantic 5000 to 7000-word blog posts?
Just because a Brian Dean and Neil Patel do so, it doesn’t mean that every small business should follow suit.
There’s only one rule for the “length” of the blog post: just do justice to the content you promised (and no, it doesn’t have to be perfect — see above).
Tie-in Blogging With Lead Generation (Where are the results, honey?)
Blogging — and all of the time, resources, and efforts over years — is worth nothing if you don’t have a way to tie-in your small business blogging efforts with lead generation.
Blogging = Content = traffic (from search, social media) = Lead generation = sales = revenue = profits
That’s it. That’s business.
No one is going to buy from you just because you rank on the top of SERP, they read your blog post, or maybe you got their attention and they keep coming back to read (or consume) some more.
It’s worth noting again: your customers won’t buy from you just because you publish blog posts. They buy when they are ready to do so. Your job is to nurture this relationship until they buy (and that’s why there’s a thing called a Pipeline).
For this reason alone, there’s lead generation and the reason why it’s crucial. You should have pop-ups on your website, and you ought to have sales funnels working 24×7. Not doing this is one of the most unforgivable small business blogging mistakes, ever.
Not using Landing Pages & Sales Funnels
Following through with lead generation, the question still remains: How do you generate leads for your business? Pop-ups are one way. Landing pages are another.
Depending on your business, you’ll sometimes need a lot more than a simple set of landing pages: you’ll need sales funnels.
Either way, not using landing pages is a huge mistake. Even marketers and agencies still don’t use landing pages for their clients.
So, you’ll be forgiven if you didn’t embrace the power of landing pages yet.
Learn to use landing pages to help get more leads, strive for better conversion rates, and bring in the results your business deserves.
Use any of the following tools:
I don’t care what you use. Landing pages, however, are a must.
Not using calls-to-action within blog posts
Closely related to lead generation (above), every single blog post you publish must have calls to action within your blog posts (at least showing twice inside a blog post).
If you don’t use any of the lead generation tools or software, at least have a paragraph and a link showing up.
You need to nudge, prompt, remind, and push your visitors to sign up for something (like appropriate lead magnets).
Why don’t you do this more often? Why don’t you have calls to action within your blog posts?
Optional: Additionally, you can have pop-ups (such as exit intent pop-ups), welcome mats, banners on your blog sidebar, and elsewhere on the site.
Not following up with email marketing
After your visitors sign up as leads (above), the real relationship begins. Think of this as the official first date.
Starting with a sequence of automated email marketing campaigns, you’ll now have to nurture the relationship.
Send out exclusive content for your email subscribers, write to your subscribers like you’d write to your friends, strive to provide more value to your subscribers, and more.
Do that and then see the money come right in. Relationships sell, nothing else.
Starting with email marketing — just taking action — however does a lot for your bottomline.
Blogs as base, Social Media as extension
Not many businesses use social media the way they should. For most businesses, building social proof, gaining traction on social media, and most things that come with using social media the smart way are just out of the question.
Why? That’s because small businesses show up on social media “sometimes”, “rarely”, “on and off”, and maybe “never”.
If and when they do, they flood social feeds with desperate pleas to “buy”.
There’s “social” in “social media”. You won’t sell a peanut by getting desperate on social (trying to push and push). In fact, it’s one of the most common small business blogging mistakes you can make.
Your business blog is the base. Social media is an extension of your content marketing base. So, this is what you should do:
- Distribute the content you create on your blog on social media (on repeat, forever). Use a free social media scheduling tool like SEMRush to help.
- As you distribute your own content, share other content (related to your business) on social media as well. When you do, tag these sources. Mention others with their social handles.
- Genuinely help out others, share your ideas, provide some inspiration, and answer some questions.
- Build one-to-one relationships on social media. It’s crowded there and this is one opportunity to stand out.
- Aim to be “personable”, even as a brand. Don’t sound over-the-top, condescending, or like you don’t care. If you are in business, you better care (I could start a competing business in less than a day. So can everyone else).
On top of that, social media is also about trying to build real relationships with others (sometimes, at scale).
Social media gets you traffic. It helps build traction on digital media. Your brand has the opportunity to connect with millions.
These are the basics. These are also some of the most common small business blogging mistakes businesses make — again and again. Which of these small business blogging mistakes are you guilty of?
Stop it. Now.