Blogging will help you attract visitors to your site which you can then convert into leads and customers by implementing an effective inbound methodology. Inbound marketing is all about the right content in the right context based on the buyer's journey. That being said, I would say go for the blogging when your business is set up completely and is ready to offer services to customers.
When it comes to blogging and especially for a consumer-focused startup then you need to take care a lot of factors to get the right results. Like we at Agicent, write blog posts on mobile application development and marketing for our customers who majorly belong to the startup community.
First, we get into their shoes and figure out the problems they are facing in their buyer's journey and then write quality articles to help them out. We also follow an in-house SEO strategy which helps us to attract more visitors to our site.
Do some keyword research before writing about a topic. Pick up keywords with high search volumes and low SEO difficulty. Also, focus on long tail keywords as they are easier to rank. Once done, optimize your article around those keywords and also include the phrases that your customers might use while querying the problem to Google.
I will suggest, do the on-page SEO in the right manner and then share it socially as much as you can. It will help you get the initial ranking boost and if your article lands on 2nd or 3rd page within a day, then start building quality links for it to improve its ranking.
Lastly, follow a blogging schedule i.e. post your blogs consistently like once or twice a week or even daily (that's totally up to you).
Before you actually start your blog, determine what stories you want to share. Ask yourself and/or your co-founders these questions:
Additionally, make sure that your content is well-written in terms of readability and grammar. Failing in these areas will take away from the credibility of your blog.
It's a war of attrition. Blogs are great because they can demonstrate thought-leadership, they can serve as jump-points for other interesting content, they can show your alignment with your customer base, and give that sense of "these guys/girls know what they are talking about".
It will start out with minimal hits, and a lot of frustration, but it will build, especially if you run social campaigns and encourage sharing.
When is the right time ? Right away. There is nothing worse than visiting a blog that has 1 or 2 posts on it, and nothing else. Build a library, you can promote it on an ongoing basis, and the numbers will grow steadily.
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