You know the technical stuff – proper SEO optimization, good publishing cadence, reader-friendly formatting, but what about the emotional attachment?
Your blog posts may be technically perfect, but if they aren’t relatable, you’ll have a hard time keeping people on the page. This reduces your chances of building brand loyalty because readers aren’t sticking around.
Creating content that captures the reader’s attention is a challenge for marketers across the board.
Not only do 43 percent of people admit to skimming blog posts, but producing relatable, engaging content was anticipated to be the greatest challenge for B2B and B2C marketers in 2016. Year after year, this problem tops the charts, and 2017 is no different.
Just because everyone is struggling with this, however, doesn’t mean you need to. Use the following ideas, all of which are simple to implement, to make your blog posts more relatable.
Embed Instagram Posts
Instagram is naturally a more personable platform. Many businesses use it to capture employee photos, adventures at conferences and more. If you use Instagram for these fun behind-the-scenes opportunities, embed them into your blog posts when appropriate.
If your business doesn’t use Instagram, fear not – you can still use this to make your posts more relatable. For example, when a home goods store is writing about new fall trends, they can include the Instagram post of a customer, popular blogger, industry influencer or InstaStar using their product, or simply using the same trending style.
Another fun option: Show that your employees walk the walk by embedding one of their Instagram posts, with their permission.
Make sure readers know it’s an employee’s photo to reinforce the relationship. You might say: “Check out our Chief Marketing Officer’s living room; she’s loving this fall’s maroon trend too!”
Whether the photo is yours or not, you can easily to embed it into your post, including the caption, right from the web app. Click the three dots in the bottom right corner, choose “Embed,” and paste the code given to you into the HTML of the post.
Take Your Own Photos
Nothing says boring and unrelatable like a stock photo that everyone’s seen ten times before. Start moving away from those boring imagery choices by taking your own photos. Luckily, it’s possible to capture great shots without having any photography skills, thanks to advancements in mobile phone camera technology.
For example, one reason why the new iPhone 7’s camera was a topic of discussion leading up to the release is because it allows users to take photos with depth of field. This is normally only possible with an expensive professional SLR or DSLR cameras, according to iPhone 7 Rumors Confirmed.
This feature can also be found in HTC M8 and a few other newer phone models, making it possible for you to take high-quality photos, from your business’ point of view.
To start, choose at least five blog posts on your calendar for the next month that you can make more relatable with images that you’ve taken yourself. Put these photo opportunities on your calendar or to-do list, so when the time comes to publish, you have all the assets you need.
If you have someone on staff who doubles as a photographer in your office, they can take this on as a project of their own. Slowly you’ll build a large file of assets, eliminating the need to use stock imagery in any blog post.
Work With Your Customers
Ideally, current and future customers are reading your blog posts. These are the people who see value in the topics you cover, and as such, relating to them is of utmost importance.
A fun way to make the connection between content and customer is to bring them into the production process.
This humanizes the work you’re doing and allows customers to see themselves in your blog posts. Here are a few fun ideas to try:
Ask a question on Facebook and include all the answers in a blog post.
Example: A home cleaning business might ask: “What is your favorite DIY method for getting rid of stains? Share with us in the comments and we’ll feature the best responses in an upcoming blog post!” Many other brands have done similar Facebook crowdsourcing, including Greggs and Lays.
Host a Monthly “Featured Customer”
This is a fun way to provide more social proof for your brand while making posts relatable.
Example: A kitchen retailer can do a Q&A with a customer who likes to cook. The customer can share their favorite recipes and kitchen appliances. They may even be able to share different ways they use a product of yours, giving other customers new ideas. Take this to the next level, like Patagonia did, and create an entire customer-story blog.
Making your blog posts more relatable boosts engagement with your content and your brand.
The best part: all of these ideas are relatively simple to implement, allowing you to test the waters with your customers and find just the right amount of relatability to keep them interested.
Note: The opinions expressed in this article are the views of the author, and not necessarily the views of Web Design and SEO of Carolinas, its staff, or its partners.