Mix Up Your "Types" of Blog Posts to Increase Traffic
When it comes to content marketing, we tend to sound like a broken record in terms of "starting with a strategy." And we're fine with that for two main reasons:
1) It will save you time, and
2) You will see better results, faster.
So, rather than rehashing the importance of creating buyer personas and mapping your content to the buyer's journey here, I'll point you to some recent posts that cover the subject.
Once you've identified a list of blog topics that will attract and nurture your ideal customers throughout the purchase process, it's time to consider offering a variety of content in terms of format.
As we develop editorial calendars for our clients, as well as our own blog content, we consider the following "types" of posts to make sure we are creating a variety of content using different mediums for different purposes.
Here's a breakdown of the types of posts we recommend for home builders and remodelers:
Tactical posts typically take up the bulk of most blogs. Ranging in length from 500-750 words, tactical posts provide steps or insights to achieve a specific end-goal. For a home builder blog, tactical post examples might include "Steps to Finding the Right Custom Home Builder" or "How to Lower Energy Costs in Your New Home." Some tactical post examples for a remodeler blog might be "How to Estimate Your Kitchen Remodel Project" or "What Should I Ask a Potential Remodeler."
In-depth posts for a home builder or remodeler blog tend to be longer than tactical posts (750+ words) and provide visitors with an added value such as data on industry trends, new products or construction techniques, or first-hand accounts such as a detailed case study. In-depth posts do require a substantial amount of research and planning; however, in-depth posts tend to be very successful over time.
List posts are relatively self-explanatory, somewhat easy to produce, and highly shareable on social media. Rather than sticking with "Top 10" lists, try mixing it up by using an odd number to stand out. While list posts tend to drive short-term traffic, you can update and republish them on a periodic basis to churn new waters. Once you have a few list posts covering similar subjects, you can combine them to create an "Ultimate" or "Essential" list such as the "Ultimate Checklist for First-Time Home Buyers" or the "Essential List of Home Remodeling Ideas for Your Bathroom."
Infographics are tactical posts on visual steroids. Often data-driven, infographics can be used to highlight trends in the industry, how your service can add value to a home, and even your process for working with a new customer.
For the remodeler, "how to" videos are priceless. Don't be afraid to share your "secret sauce" or basic tips for installing new flooring or laying bathroom tile. Your videos are a great way to build trust with potential customers while giving them a few insights at the same time. For the home builder, videos can be used as portfolios for projects or to humanize your business with staff interviews on your history or processes.
Influencer posts are often used to highlight other voices in your industry. An efficient way to create an influencer post is to conduct an interview of an expert in your field. Influencer posts can also come in the form of a list and have the potential to become shared across many social media channels.
As an authority in your industry, you probably have options on what is happening with trends, legislature, new materials and construction techniques, and consumer demands. Don't be afraid to share your opinions in a constructive and informative manner.
Have a trade show coming up? Start writing about it. Did you hold a company outing? Write about that. Did you meet an amazing customer? Share their story. These on-the-fly posts pop up more than you think, if you keep your eyes open. Ad hoc posts are a way to target specific events and to share your company's story.
This certainly isn't an exhaustive list of potential "types" of blog posts, but it's a nice mix of formats that will keep your audience's attention and drive a mixture of short- and long-term traffic. At the same time, it will help your content team stay fresh in the process. Keep in mind that many posts will fall into multiple categories -- there are no set rules, go mix and match.
That being said, what type of post is this?