This topic has been covered many times; however, it is beneficial to occasionally review best practices for blogging and using Twitter just to make sure you’re covering all of the bases.
Posting valuable content is one of the most important factors for social media success. In fact, Schaefer (2013) contends that “content is the currency of the social web, and sharing that content is the catalyst to new relationships and business benefits” (p. 16). He goes on to say that “blogs and Twitter fit like a hand in a glove. Twitter is like the trailer to the blog’s movie” (p. 17). Thus, tweeting about the content on your blog will drive traffic to it.
Other best practices for blogging and tweeting include choosing the right person, knowing who your audience is, creating a plan, and being responsive.
It is important to appoint someone who is passionate about spreading your message. This is particularly important when it comes to blogging. Li and Bernoff (2011) note “blogging is too personal, and requires too much effort to be crammed down anybody’s throat. The result, inevitably, will look and feel lame, and it’s worse than not having a blog at all” (p. 115).
You also need to know who your audience is and what their needs are in order to craft the right message. Listening to conversations within your industry will help you gain an understanding of what their needs are and how you can contribute. Tools like Hootsuite are excellent for monitoring multiple platforms.
Have clear objectives defined, a messaging strategy, and a content calendar in place. This will help take the guesswork out of what to write and when.
Be sure to respond promptly to comments. If people take the time to read your blog and comment, thank them and respond. Be helpful by answering questions. If you can’t answer a question, refer them to someone who can.
- Determine a promotion strategy for your blog. Consider including a link to it on your email signature, promote it through your other social media sites, and send out an email announcement both internally and externally. Include widgets on your blog for readers to easily share it.
- Craft a catchy, attention-getting headline.
- Use tags and categories so your blog is classified under the right topics. This will make it easier to find.
- Engage your readers by including a call to action. Ask a question, offer a white paper, share a link, a video, add a poll, etc.
- Use keyword-rich content (terms that your audience will likely search on). This will improve your chances of ranking higher on relevant searches.
- Posts should be kept to a minimum of 400 words and a maximum of 800 words.
- Include links, particularly when citing online material. Doing so will add dimension to your posts. Be sure to give proper credit when using others’ work.
Watch this short video by Maria Peagler of WillowRidgeMedia for additional blogging tips:
- Quality is better than quantity. Share something meaningful like an interesting article, blog post, image, web link or video.
- Be concise. You only have 140 characters to make your point.
- Tweet regularly. For beginners, Schaefer (2013) recommends tweeting “at least once a day so people know you’re active” (p. 101).
- Acknowledge people who mention you, and always thank anyone who retweets your tweet. If you’re trying to get someone to follow you, try retweeting some of their tweets.
- Hashtags are helpful to improve your tweet’s visibility on Twitter searches.
- Use a URL shortener such as Bitly.com. Doing so will help preserve characters.
Moth (2013) recognizes several B2B companies that use Twitter effectively including Hubspot, GE , and Adobe. Hubspot produces great content and is considered a resource for digital marketers. General Electric focuses on innovation and technology, responds to customers, and creates great campaigns. Adobe focuses on its own products but also succeeds in offering a broad range of content, responds to customers and answers product questions (n.p).
Anderson’s (2012) top picks for B2B blogs include Intercom which offers a good mix of product and educational content; Deloitte which offers content in a number of formats; and Gild which focuses on a problem-solution format.
Can you offer some additional tips for blogging and tweeting?
Anderson, M. (2012). 10 B2B Companies That Create Exceptional Content. Retrieved from http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/33505/10-B2B-Companies-That-Create-Exceptional-Content.aspx
Baruch, Y. (2013). Blogging Best Practices [PDF document]. Retrieved from Course Project Guidelines Web site: https://bb.snhu.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-565446-dt-content-rid-332629_1/xid-332629_1
Li, C., Bernoff, J. (2011) Talking with the Groundswell. In Groundswell. (p. 99-127). Boston, MA: Harvard Business Review Press.
Moth, D. (2013). Six Examples of B2B Companies that Shine on Twitter. Retrieved from http://econsultancy.com/us/blog/62692-six-examples-of-b2b-companies-that-shine-on-twitter
Schaefer, M. (2013). The Tao of Twitter. McGraw-Hill.