Just as many of us were brought up on the 4 Ps of traditional marketing, in Business Blogging, I believe that there are 5 Rs on which we need to focus our attention if we are going to create a successful and sustainable Business Blog.

These 5 key elements of creating a successful Business Blog are:

Simply put, we need to create and maintain a Blog which in the first instance will attract visitors and then encourage them to particpate by replying to our posts. Following on from that, we need to ensure it provides sufficient value or creates enough interest to make these visitors return and become regular readers as well as recommend our Blog to others. The 5th ‘R’ of RSS underpins all of the others.

Our goal should be to put all the necessary elements in place on our Blog to allow these 5 Rs to happen as smoothly and as automatically as possible. In doing so, we will have created a Blog which fulfils both our readers requirements and our own business needs.

Let’s look at the first of the 5 Rs, which is:

Our first challenge is to get someone to read our blog. Here, the quality of what we write in the posts will obviously be important but, before that, we have to attract the readers to our Blog so that they can find out what we are writing about and how good it is!

In many cases, the only elements that they have to make the decision on will be the name of the Blog and the title of the post. These are effectively the headlines which should capture the attention of the readers and, as any good copywriter knows, the headline is crucial in getting people to read the rest of the article. In blogs, doubly so, because these elements may be the only thing that they see when they find you in Search Engines, for example. So spend time on these first when you set up your blog and then each time that you write it.

You also need to make sure that you promote your Blog well you need to let potential readers know what you are writing about and where they can find you. In fact, you need to let them know that your blog exists at all! So use all of the tools that are at your disposal: clear links on your website, make as much use of Search Engines as you can with search engine friendly structure and posts; make sure that you submit your Blog to Blog directories, RSS directories and general online directories; get your RSS feeds found by them as well. Ping after every post ideally automatically! Promote your blog on your business cards, stationery, email signature and wherever someone comes in contact with you or your business. You want to ensure that you spread the word as widely as possible, so make the best of all the opportunities.

Search Engines are also an excellent source of new readers so give your Blog every chance to be found. While a well written, focussed Blog is excellent Search Engine material in itself, it you are able to increase its attractiveness further through additional Search Engine Optimisation, then you should do so. You need to build these elements on top of a solid base of quality content though remember who you are aiming this at.

There are some blogs which can get readership levels up very quickly by being contentious, by provoking or attacking in the posts. This is particularly effective if the target is a well known figure or idea. However, for most business blogs, we are looking to attract readers with positive ideas rather than negative ones, so this approach should only be considered in certain special circumstances.

Key elements: consistent quality content, attractive title, optimised posts, good blog promotion

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