Are you ready to make blogging work for your business? If you already know the benefits associated with corporate blogging, then the next step is to put these concepts to work by creating your own corporate blog and sharing your company with the world.

Blogging Work for Your Business

1 – The first step is to find your domain name

If you already have a website for your business, then the most advantageous option may be to attach your blog in some way to your normal business site.

The next best thing would be to own the domain name that is most descriptive of your business when creating your blog. Either use your business name for your blog name, or your own name, so that you can help people link you and your blog with the company that you are intending to represent.

Some of the most well known domain name registrars are GoDaddy, MyDomain, Register, PacNames and DotCalmDomains.

2 – Figure out which blogging tool or blogging platform is going to work best for you

There are at least two different camps to consider when it comes to tools. The first is those who prefer self hosted blogs, and the second is those who prefer hosting tools.

Where do you feel most comfortable? The decision is ultimately up to you but there are pros and cons associated with both options. Some of the options available to you are easily customizable hosted options like TypePad offered by SixApart, or Movable Type which offers more control than TypePad.

If you want to host your own blog, WordPress may be more your style, as it offers a lot of customization and control and you can host it a lot more efficiently by yourself.

3 – Talk about yourself so your readers can get to know you

Most blog templates have an “About” function. Use this wisely so that you may capture the true essence of who you are and what you are hoping to accomplish with your blog.

You should aim to strike an excellent balance between human voice and “business speak” to show your readers that you mean business, but are just a passionate human being at the core.

4 – Register your blog and start spreading the word about your endeavor

Get comfortable with your blog before you start speaking out about it. Once you have some content, and perhaps even a reader or two, you can start spreading the word about your blog.

Register your blog at FeedBurner, available at http://www.feedburner.com so that you can provide RSS and e-mail feeds that people can use to gain access to your content.

5 – Create a resource section or a blog roll to show your customers what you enjoy reading, or what resources you often visit

Blog rolls are generous in two different ways, as not only do they allow people who you link to to find your blog, but they also help readers expand their knowledge by checking out the blogs that you recommend.

6 – Create outgoing links from your blog as much as you can, or as much as is feasible

If there are people in your network who are posting excellent content, talk about that content, and link to it. Book mark their posts and refer to them any time you touch on the same topic.

This is good blogging etiquette. Your blog content does not have to be completely unique, so feel free to give a nod to other bloggers online when their content is worth talking about.

7 – Make comments in other blogs and on other websites

This is not only about exposure or placing links, but it also has to do with being generous and participating within your industry.

Don’t simply leave brief comments like “Nice post.” Or “Good topic,” but rather, you should leave meaningful and useful comments that facilitate conversation in your blog and others.

8 – Give people methods to share your content with their networks

There are plenty of social plugins like Digg, Share This, StumbleUpon and Reddit that make it possible for readers who appreciate your content to share it within other circles and networks.

This is an excellent way to get some free publicity simply by writing worthwhile content.

9 – Give your readers different ways that they can engage with you

One of the most obvious ones is simply to allow for commenting. Stay on top of comment moderation and respond to the comments that you receive, facilitating conversation between you and your readers.

The more your readers are aware that you are reading and responding to their comments, the more likely they will be to keep coming back for more.

10 – Create a good, hard working search function for your blog

WordPress comes with default search widget, but if you are using another platform you can use Google Search button, and there are plenty of other search functions that can be found online and can be integrated into your blog.

The point here is obviously to allow people to search for any topic of their choosing on your blog, which is much easier than trying to find your blog topics from an outside search engine.

11 – Sign up for an RSS Aggregation Service

So that you can stay on top of blogs and online publications that you read through syndication. There are numerous RSS aggregation service out there. Just search online and used the service which is simple to use.

Are you ready to make blogging work for your business? If you already know the benefits associated with corporate blogging, then the next step is to put these concepts to work by creating your own corporate blog and sharing your company with the world.

12 – Listen to what people are saying when they talk about you

There are a wide variety of different tools that you can use in order to monitor the conversation. One of the most popular ones is to set up a Google Alert with your name, along with another for the name of your blog, and other alerts for topics that are important to you. Google will send you an e-mail any time one of your key terms is mentioned online.

13 – Find new ways to publicize your blog to your entire network

Print the URL of your blog on your business cards; include it in your e-mail signature, post it on your LinkedIn account, mention it in your Facebook account, Twitter it, and find plenty of other ways to get the word out about your blog. The more you most your blog URL on the internet, the more likely you will be to have it seen.

14 – Install Analytic Software, allowing you to track your traffic and where it is coming from

One of the most popular options is Google Analytics, which can be found at http://www.google.com/Analytics for free. Another excellent tool worth considering is Quantcast, which is especially useful when you are selling advertising on your site and want to be able to define your audience, measuring your site capabilities based on your traffic.

15 – Create content that is both useful and timely for your blog

This is well worth mentioning, because content is what fuels a blog and keeps readers coming back to it for more. You also need to consider the search engine optimization value for your blog and its content.

Your blog content should be search engine optimized in order for you to get the most out of your blog.

16 – Use audio, video, photos and other rich media to bring your blog to life

Different people respond to different types of media in different ways. Create a blog radio show, or host a show with topics relating to your industry and pepper your blog with these media pieces in addition to your normal blog topics. Podcasts are another excellent way to get the most out of your corporate blog, giving your readers other forms of media to take advantage of.

17 – Make it easy for your readers to get in contact with you

Give your readers numerous means of contacting you, including an e-mail address, a phone number, the location of your office, and anything else that will allow your readers to find you.

There are plenty of other ways to get the most out of your corporate blog, but these seventeen tips provide an excellent jumping off point to build your blog from.