Tagged: small business blogging

Why Your Blog Posts Need Photos

Why Your Blog Posts Need Photos @ SarahWritesStoriesWe talked last month about how to get photos for your blog, but maybe you’re not yet convinced that’s even something you need.  So let’s back up a bit.

You know the feeling when you arrive at a web page and see a wall of text, right? Your reaction is probably the psychological equivalent of backing away slowly before turning & running, but with much less energy expenditure — you simply click away.

Three Reasons Your Blog Posts Need Photos

We live in a visual age, so including images in your blog posts is important.  Here are three reasons why.

Photos Catch Your Audience’s Attention

You can help avoid “tl;dr” syndrome by breaking up your post with an eye-catching image.  Our eyes are drawn to images, and when you’re fighting for attention on the internet (which you are), a striking image can be the difference between a click in or a click away.

Photos Give You Another SEO Tool

Another benefit of including images in your blog posts is that they give search engines another opportunity to find you — if you’re incorporating SEO.  And you can optimize your images in two easy steps:

  1. Use a meaningful file name.
  2. Include alt-text.

Photos Make Your Posts More Appealing to Share

If you’ve ever shared an article on facebook, you’ve probably noticed that you have the option to select an image from the page to appear with your link.  And thinking about your own habits on facebook, aren’t you more likely to a) actually see the link with a photo and b) click it?

Giving your readers an image to share gets your small business on Pinterest and facebook — and that sort of word of mouth is some of the best, most targeted advertising you can get — and it’s free.

Need More Proof?

The proof is in the pudding, so to speak, and MDG Advertising has done a wonderful, statistic-pudding-filled infographic.

It’s All About the Images [infographic by MDG Advertising]

Infographic by MDG Advertising

Talk about a picture being worth a thousand words, right?

Blog Writing and Pinterest-Ready Graphics at Sarah Writes Stories

If you’re ready to take your blog to the next level but need help doing so, let’s chat!  I’d love to work with you to create a blog that engages your readers and brings in the new customers you’re looking for.

How to Use Pinterest for Your Small Business

How to Use Pinterest for Your Small Business @ SarahWritesStoriesWhen you think of Pinterest, do you only imagine recipes and crafts? If so, think again!

Pinterest has become another great tool to share what your company is doing.  People use it not just for recipes and crafts, but also for tips, tricks and information to make their lives easier and better.  So if you’re writing great blog content, then there’s a good chance there are people on Pinterest who want to see it and pin it — and that means more people visiting your website.

How to Use Pinterest for Small Business

You can set up your boards just like you set up categories for your blog.  For instance, on my Sarah Writes Stories Pinterest account, I have boards for Content Writing, Organization & Productivity, Recipes for the Busy, Keeping Fit & Healthy, Social Media, Growing Your Business, Staying Motivated, Holidays, and Finances for Freelancers & Small Businesses.  As I develop more categories on my blog, I add them as boards on my Pinterest.

Once you have these categories, you can pin your own posts as well as repinning other appropriately themed pins from other Pinterest users.  Once again, social media is about (you guessed it) being social.  You should also have one board to which you pin all of your posts, in case people want to keep up with your blog that way.

Making Your Blog More Pinterest-Friendly

The best way to make your blog more friendly to Pinners is to incorporate logo-tagged images with your posts’ headlines.  Take a look at the image on this post for an example.

Whether you’re using your own photos or using stock images, it’s a good idea to tag them with your logo & website so people immediately know where the information is coming from when they see it.  The added bonus?  Pinterest-friendly graphics look sharp and professional on your website, too.

Pinterest-Ready Images at Sarah Writes Stories

If you’d like to incorporate Pinterest-ready images into your blog posts, I can help.  Whether you’re looking for a template you can update yourself or a batch of ready-to-go graphics, I’d love to work with you to create images that grab attention both on your blog and on Pinterest.

Three Ideas for Great Blog Content

So, now that you know you need a blog, you maybe wondering what the heck you need to blog about.  It’s not as hard as you might think.  There are three sure-fire ways to provide solid blog content to your current and potential customers.

3 Paths to Great Blog Content @ Sarah Writes StoriesThree Paths to Great Blog Content

All good blog posts should do at least one of these three things:

  • Inform
  • Entertain
  • Persuade

And the secret to creating a great blog post is to combine them.  Here are three topics that do just that.

Tell People How To Do Something

If you have a special skill set, use your blog to share some of that knowledge with your customers.  This not only builds credibility and positions you as an expert, but it also helps build trust with your customers.  Don’t worry about giving away trade secrets.  For instance, even though I understand what happens during an HVAC tune-up and have even written about it for clients, I’m still going to turn to the pros when I need the job done.

Tell People Why To Do Something

Along with telling people how to do something, you should also tell them why they should do something.  For instance, if you’re in the gutter-cleaning or chimney-sweeping business, tell people WHY these tasks are so important.  If you’re in the cupcake business, give people a list of occasions for which they should send cupcakes to friends, family or coworkers.  These posts are especially great for including a call to action to turn your past customers into repeat customers and your potential customers into new ones.

Tell People About Your Business

If you’ve got something special going on at your business, like a sale or promotion, a new product or service, or a special event you want people to be aware of, then blog about it!  Your blog is a great place to showcase new and time-sensitive information — and a blog post is easy to share with your other social networks, like twitter and facebook.

Make Your Blog a Priority

Remember, you don’t have to be a great writer to ensure your blog has great content.  Writing a blog takes time and effort you may want to devote to the parts of your business you’re passionate about.  Working with an experienced SEO copywriter who can take your ideas, style and voice and turn them into Great Blog Content is one of the best ways to take your business to the next level.

Blog Writing at Sarah Writes Stories

I’d love to work with you to come up with Great Blog Content that will inform, entertain and persuade past, current and potential customers.  Having worked with more than 40 clients in the past year alone, I know how to adapt to each client’s personal needs and goals.  If you’re ready to get your blog started or make your current one more effective, let’s chat about how we can work together to make that happen!