In today’s digital world, more and more people are discovering new products and services from online resources. We’re receiving more newsletters, watching more webinars, listening to more podcasts, and reading more articles from social media than ever before.
It’s equal parts exciting and exhausting, if I’m being honest with you.
In light of in-person events, such as conferences, being reduced or cancelled, digital mediums are becoming more normal to our everyday lives. This is why it’s increasingly important to make sure your firm has a voice in the metaphorical digital sea of content.
What if your business doesn’t have a widely read blog or a controversial partner that’s making headlines every day? How can a tax and accounting firm start to publish articles that will get in front of the people they’re intended for?
Here is where I suggest contributing to a partner’s or client’s blog – much like I am contributing to the Intuit® Tax Pro Center right now. Many of you may not know it, but I have my very own blog. Am I mad you didn’t know about it? No! Am I excited you may have just clicked through and discovered it. Yes!!
There are many reasons why your firm should incorporate guest blogging into your marketing strategy that goes beyond simply writing for the sake of writing. As part of your marketing strategy, here are three reasons your firm should consider contributing to a blog.
1. Position yourself as a thought leader in your niche. Guest blogging is a great opportunity for companies to bring in expert knowledge they might not have in-house. Just look at Shopify or MyCustomer. Both openly welcome guest blogging on their websites, and even provide detailed instructions on how to submit topics that someone else is better positioned to talk about.
Intuit has many in-house experts who write about QuickBooks® and accounting trends, but when it comes to having the experience to grow a niche small business from the ground up, the Tax Pro Center turns to business coaches like myself, who have done just that to get a unique perspective that can’t be replicated or expressed the same way.
Your firm has employees and writers who have their own unique experiences and areas of expertise they can speak to. If you have a client or partner who is looking to include a wider range of topics on their own website, being their guest author who has the credentials to write about a topic is a dream come true for any marketing team.
If you’re not sure if your clients or partners accept guest blogging, just ask them. Starting these beneficial relationships could even open the doorway to adding more expertise and perspective to your own blog down the line.
2. Secure backlinks for your website. A second reason to add guest blogging to your marketing strategy is a bit more technical. You’ve probably heard the term search engine optimization (SEO) before, but you might not be familiar with what it is or how guest blogging has anything to do with it.
SEO is a process that helps search engines, such as Google or Bing, qualify the contents of your website through a ranking system. One of the ways Google can determine if a website is producing high-quality content is through backlinks – essentially a digital citation of your website or webpage from a separate website.
Backlines are like a “vote of confidence” from another website. Like a reference on your resumé who can verify what you wrote is true, backlinks are your website’s references for Google. The more high-quality backlinks (those from popular websites) your website has, the better chance your own website has for ranking on search engines.
3. Improve visibility by using the momentum of a popular blog. What if your firm has never had a website and is just starting out? What if you haven’t been able to get in front of the right audience, at the right time, with your current content strategy? What if you just hired the next J.K. Rowling and want the world to see how amazing they are?
Contributing to a blog could be just what your team needs. Having the right opportunity to publish a great article in front of the right audience allows you to connect with the right people, at the right time. Just because your own blog isn’t getting the readership you want doesn’t mean it won’t get there. By writing for a more popular blog, you can help readers discover who you are and potentially gain some new members to your own audience.
So … to sum it up
As firm owners, you’re trying to achieve a similar goal with your marketing strategy – reach more prospects and retain the clients you have. Guest blogging is a fantastic way to showcase your areas of thought leadership that are clearly trusted by an outside source.
Although it’s hard to think about giving away a great article to another person or company’s website, and let them get all the website traffic, the benefits you’ll be receiving back make these projects well worth it. The more you backlink, the better your website rankings will be because you’ll not only get in front of a new audience to showcase your thought leadership, but also help your partners or clients by providing them with a new perspective for their own website.
As for retaining clients, you can promote your guest blog on your own website, or through your email newsletter, to highlight how other companies see you as a thought leader in your space. Show that your firm takes being an expert in your field seriously, and that others view you as an expert. What’s a better reference – saying you’re great at something, or someone vouching for you?
Take your marketing strategy to the next level by using guest blogging as a tool to grow your leads and build trust with your clients.
Editor’s note: This article was originally published on Firm of the Future.