How to Start a Blog for Your Food Business
As a food and beverage entrepreneur, you sometimes have to step outside your comfort zone to help take your business to the next level. In doing so, you’ve probably already taken a chance on social media and various online promotions. But another way you can attract new clients and get your name out there is by starting a blog for your business. This is the perfect opportunity to share your success stories or offer up some sage advice for those just starting out.
For first time bloggers, it might seem like an uncomfortable leap, but as you’ll soon discover, it can be a great way to step out into the online community and make a name for you and your business. To help get you on the right track, I’m here to provide you with all the blogging basics you need to get started.
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Choose a Platform That’s Easy to Use and Meets Your Needs
Before you can even begin writing your first post, it’s important to choose a platform that works best for you. There are hundreds of options out there, but some of the most common include WordPress, Blogger, Gawker, etc. Each has its pros and cons, but all are relatively easy for first-time bloggers to use. Also, check to see if your current website has the option to add a blog. I recommend keeping your blog and website together to help increase your visibility with search engines like Google.
As you’re evaluating your blog platform options, you’ll also consider how much money you’re willing to put into it. You’ll have to decide if you want to stick with free versions or pay for a self-hosted domain name that is geared toward your business. Unfortunately, most of the blog platforms I listed earlier don’t allow you to choose your own domain name, so you’d be stuck with some variation of yourblog.(platform name).com.
What’s in a domain name you might ask? Well in the case of free blogging platforms, because you’re using their web space to host your content, they own your blog. If you pay to have your own domain, you are in complete control of your blog. You make all the decisions when it comes to every design aspect. You also have more freedom to choose to use your blog for monetization purposes.
Find the Perfect Topic
Now that all the logistical stuff is out of the way, it’s time to sit down and pen the perfect post. Before you can begin to write, you should probably stop and think about what you want your blog to be used for. Are you going to detail your day-to-day experiences in the food & beverage industry, or are you going to offer insightful tips and tricks of the trade? These types of questions can help sway the content that you produce.
If you’re still having trouble determining that perfect topic, reach out to your customers and social media followers and see what they’d be most interested in reading about. Engage them through surveys or polls and find out what problems they’re having, what kind of content they’re sharing, and what topics related to your business are they most interested in.
Three Essentials For Every Blog Post
While you might have total freedom about how you design your blog and what you post, there are a few things that every blog post should include. These three essential blog components can help attract new readers and set your writing apart from the rest.
An Irresistible Headline
For most people, your blog post headline or title will be the only thing they read. The headline is the single detail that is often overlooked by writers. If potential readers find that your headline doesn't match what they are looking for, they’re never going to delve into the awesome content that you’ve written.
I recommend thinking about typical questions that your audience is looking to solve and then turning those questions into your blog post. Use the main keyword in your headline so that potential readers can know exactly what your post is about.
Another way to attract readers with your headlines is by appealing to their emotional strings. Words and phrases such as “effortless,” “painstaking,” “incredible,” and “essential” can evoke a connection with your readers that will have them wanting to keep reading.
An Attention-Grabbing Introduction
Similar to an irresistible headline is the attention-grabbing introduction. You probably learned in any English class when you write an essay, your introduction is what sets the wheels in motion and previews for the reader what’s to come. The same tactics also work for blog writing.
You’re trying to hook the reader’s attention and make them want to keep reading. This can be done in a variety of ways. Try engaging your readers and asking questions that will have them answering along in their heads as they keep reading. You can also try making those emotional connections again or use persuasive language to try and sway your readers.
Unlike your English class essays, don’t try to sound too academic. This can sometimes give off the notion that you’re a know-it-all and can deter readers from wanting to read what you have to say.
Link Out To Other Helpful Sources
Google and other search engines look favorably upon blog articles that link to other sites and have other sites linking to them. It is one indicator that your content is valuable. By linking to other sources, the same blog might be more willing to send traffic your way by linking to one of your blog posts.
You can and should also link out to your own blog posts. Say you want to reference something from a previous post you’ve made. Rather than retelling the basic gist of what was said, include a link to the article within your text so readers can look back and reflect on how these past posts apply to what you’re talking about today.
Now that you’ve got the blogging basics down pact, you’re ready to take the food and beverage world by storm by sharing your own expert industry knowledge. I can’t wait to be one of your readers!