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How a Blog Helps You Engage Customers & Reach New Ones

Simon Solis-Cohen
May 28, 2020   |   Simon Solis-Cohen Recommended for:   Marketing, Ecommerce
How To Start A Blog How To Start A Blog

Reach more customers through your blog + a checklist to get started

It's easy for blogging to get pushed to the bottom of your to-do list, but it deserves a place in your marketing workflow — right now in particular. A blog can not only help you connect with existing customers, it can help you reach new ones looking for wineries like yours.

Blogging was one of the first digital communication mediums and is essentially a short story or article published on your website. Wineries use blogs to provide customers with vineyard and harvest news, release announcements, and valuable insights into their brand. Blogs are especially useful to wineries as realistically many of your customers live far away and cannot visit your tasting room frequently, or may only do so on a limited basis during Covid-19. This is an ideal way to connect with them.

Publishing content on your blog often costs nothing. In fact, your WineDirect Content Editor includes a blogging platform to guide you through the process. There you’ll also find the WineDirect team’s advice on developing a blog plan that works for your winery and appeals directly to your customers.

Here’s our take on why your blog deserves attention now:

Find New Customers Looking For Wineries Like Yours

Right now people are typing into internet search bars, waiting for results to connect them to the things they want and need. According to the numbers, a whole lot of these people are looking for wine to purchase online and have shipped to their homes. According to data from Nielsen earlier this month, online alcohol sales were up 243 percent!

Draw customers to your winery’s ecommerce page and get a piece of this action. You probably inform your mailing list and social media followers of news and offers, but there are many more potential customers out there. To catch these buyers, you need to grab their attention while they are searching, which means the internet needs to know that your winery is a potential answer to their thirsty hunt for more wine.

Improve Your SEO With Little Effort

Let’s pretend that a person types “two-day wine shipping” into the search bar. If you’ve recently published a blog post that tells your audience that they can get “two-day wine shipping” somewhere in the context, your post may rise to the top of the heap and appear on the person’s screen.

Learn how to identify keywords in Part 1 of WineDirect’s SEO for Beginners guide.

If that messaging only went out to your mailing list, the internet doesn’t know about it and potential new customers don’t know about it either. These are the basics behind search engine optimization (SEO). It’s like tossing your hat in the ring to let all comers know you are game. In the case of online marketing with skilled SEO, you toss the words they are searching for onto the internet, which lets users know you have wine to sell. Check out WineDirect’s helpful SEO resource center to get started—it’s packed with great information.

Get 5 easy elements you can optimize today in Part 2 of WineDirect’s SEO for Beginners guide.

How You Can Stay Disciplined

When you publish content, you increase your winery’s presence on the internet. For this reason, be consistent. One post about two-day shipping isn’t a long term solution. Instead make a yearly or quarterly plan to blog about the topics people will search for.

WineDirect advises clients to post no less than once per month, and we tend to agree. Once or twice a week is ideal, but this task also needs to fit into your schedule, or it becomes a chore. Lackluster effort will shine through to your readers, and that does nothing for your brand.

Be Sure to Identify Your Voice

Be honest, accurate and engaging in your posts, but it can be ok to let a typo or two slip by, or to write as you speak if that is your brand voice. Don’t stress about your skill here, this isn’t English class! You and everyone else on your staff are good at what they do, and blogging should be seen as a transfer of information, not a test of your writing ability.

If you are a luxury brand and don’t have the proper writing skills on staff for a more polished brand voice, it may make sense to outsource the job.

If you (or your team) simply do not have the time or desire to take this on, consider hiring a writer that can help. We can make a connection if you don't have someone in mind, just reach out to the team at Highway 29 Creative.

How To Use Existing Content for Your Blog

Remember when wineries used to send printed newsletters with wine club shipments? This was blogging in early form, but without the power of digital omnipresence. When you publish or republish written content online, you bring your story to more people.

The same thing goes for virtual tastings or seminars on social media, which are excellent for engagement, but they also miss out on the currency of SEO. Create a blog post about the event (embed the video after the show, if possible) and help more people find these conversations and educational opportunities when they search online.

How to To Kick Off A Blog

  • Make a list of keywords you want customers to know about your winery and offerings. Always include “buy wine online” or a similar call to action.
  • Consult with your team and determine what topics to cover throughout the quarter or year. Make a calendar to see where you need to fill in the blanks.
  • Decide who will write each post (could be different members of the team, depending on expertise) and distribute calendar reminders.

Quick Hints:

  • Make a plan to share blog content, or snippets of blog content on social media.
  • A word count between 500-800 words often works. But that’s just a guideline.
  • Always link to your online store, this call to action turns the story into a sales tool.
  • Reminder to publish at least 1x per month: websites that are updated more often rank higher in search results.
  • Don't just post long form prose, use lists / bitesize paragraphs / section headers to break up content.

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