One of the biggest mistakes that business bloggers make is using their blog as a sales advertisement. Some companies resort to updating their blog only when they have a promotions running, such as end-of-season sales or BOGO deals. While customers appreciate a heads up in terms of a sale, your blog isn’t the best place to announce sales and promos.

The truth is that customers aren’t reading your blog to find out about your newest discount item. Customers are looking for answers, guidance, and informational material that can help them make buying decisions.

And, as a business owner, you should primarily be using blog posts to build relationships and credibility. By publishing posts that say nothing but “buy me,” you’re doing yourself more harm than good in terms of conversions.

But how can a business owner expect to move customers toward a purchase, if 1,000-word sales-pitch posts don’t work?

These are few of the most popular approaches you can use to boost conversions with your company blog.

The Educational Post

Educational blog posts are among the most popular methods of boosting conversions. These blog posts describe the purpose of your product, but the overall goal is to thoroughly educate the customer instead of attempting to pitch a sale.

This type of blog post works because they’re not pushy by nature. If done properly, an educational blog post can help influence a customer to buy your product or service due to its features and benefits. In other words, you’ll describe your product, its benefits, and include more in-depth information than a traditional “sales” post.

Educational blog posts don’t just skim the surface of your product or services. You’ll want to include expert information that customers won’t find from a basic product description. As you offer value through education, your customer will learn to trust you and remember your brand when they’re ready to buy.

The Storytelling Post

Customers are more prone to buy from brands when they can establish an emotional connection. The storytelling post is the perfect way to connect to your customers, and it’s generally much more effective than a generic sales pitch.

As you craft your storytelling post, you’ll want to be sure that the topic remains relevant to your customer. The reality is that customers are mostly interested in themselves and what they can gain from your product or services.

However, this is your chance to be creative and really differentiate yourself from your competitor. Your story doesn’t need to be complicated, either. Consider the experience that you want your customer to have with your brand, and think about the core message that you’re trying to deliver to customers.

You can see an example of quick storytelling on the Busy Blogs Plus About Us page.

The Interactive Post

Let’s face it—most customers love interactive elements in your blog. This can include slideshows, videos, and infographics. The content will need to remain relevant to your post, but these elements really help draw customers into your blog. It also helps customers engage with your brand beyond just using text.

Words are powerful, but interactive features will give customers a new experience. A lot of interactive content can be embedded directly into your blog post, such as Slideshare presentations. You can even use embedded slideshows to capture leads directly through the presentation. This allows for an added layer of entertainment for your customer, and a fresh way to capture data for the business owner.

Just be sure that the copy of your interactive content is strong and compelling. You’ll want your interactive content to offer value, just like any other blog post that you’d publish on your website.

The How-to Post

How-to posts can be extremely effective in terms of conversions. Most customers love simple, step-by-step directions of how they can accomplish a goal. However, often times the customer does not have the time, desire, or dedication required to complete specific tasks—even if you are extremely thorough and informative in your post.

If your customer reads your how-to post and decides there’s too much involvement, the chances are good that he or she will hire you to do the job for them.

The beauty of the how-to post is that you can gain customers from it by simply trying to be helpful, which is the polar opposite of a sales post.

The “Show Me” Post

Seeing is believing with some customers, and providing before and after photos of your projects can help generate leads. This is especially the case if you’re in an industry where before and after photos are relevant—think hair salons, home improvement, cosmetics, and interior design.

You can use photos to help demonstrate your expertise, but always remember to add written content along with the photos. This is your chance to describe the process between the before and the after, how long the project took you to complete, and what you’d do differently (if anything).

7 Key Points to Remember When Writing a Non-Salesy Blog Post (to Sell Services)

Although there are different variations of non-salesy blog posts, there are underlying

1.Keep the tone personal and light. Write to your blog readers in a conversational tone and let your thoughts and words flow naturally. The more natural that you sound on your blog post, the less it sounds like one big sales pitch.

2. Don’t keep the focus on you. What matters the most to your customers is how your product or service can make their lives better. Highlight the benefits of your services, and even give real-life examples of why your product is the best match for their needs.

3. Strive to be as helpful and informative as possible. You pretty much can’t fail at any blog post when you are genuinely trying to educate your readers, as long as your information is accurate. And let’s be honest, a helpful blog post is 1,000 times less annoying to read than a sales letter.

4. As you craft your blog post, always keep your ideal customer in mind. There are different phases of the buying cycle, and you should aim to address each phase the best that you can. When you don’t know your target audience, it makes lead generation through blogging much more difficult.

5. Ask your readers questions throughout your blog post. It makes them feel as if you’re making an attempt to engage in conversation, rather than simply trying to get a few bucks out of them.

6. Pay attention to presentation. The look, feel, and flow of your blog can influence customers more than you realize. Blog posts that are presented as one giant block of text won’t inspire your customers to do much of anything, other than leave your website.

7. Don’t overdo it on the call-to-action. It ruins the entire tone if you push your services too hard in the blog post, even if you are trying to actually be helpful. You don’t have to mention that you offer ABC service or sell XYZ product—chances are, your customer is already aware. If they are interested in buying from you, they’ll be happy to get in touch.

Conclusion: Your Blog is Not a Billboard

As tempting as it may be to plaster your advertisements and promos all over your blog, refrain from doing so. Keep your tone natural and your intentions genuine while blogging for business, and sales will surely follow.