Back to Basics Series – What’s a blog and are you doing it?
A blog is a series of updates or a web log, with the most recent one appearing to the top. These blogs can also be sorted into like categories, so that your readers can find more on the topics that they are interested in. .
Why is blogging important for your business?
Blogging demonstrates your knowledge and expertise and builds trust. If you understand your field of expertise, and others are seeking that knowledge, sharing it publicly via a blog, allows it to be visible, and accessible. Blogging confidently on the subjects that your clients and potential customers want to know about can put you ahead of your competition.
Not only that…
Blogging helps to build traffic to your website where you can direct it to your chosen destination.
When you blog on a topic on information that is sought after, using keywords and phrases that customers are searching for on Google, or sharing success stories, or even firsthand disasters that are compelling enough for others to share though social media such as Facebook, Twitter and Linked In and other sharing communities, you can direct this traffic to other pages on your site where a desired action can be taken. This could be a product page, a sign up page, or a sales page. Research has shown that businesses who blog more often, get more action.
But blogging isn’t just about sales.
Blogging takes marketing a step further where you can interact with your customer base personally and build a relationship with them.
Connecting with your target audience in a meaningful way, where they can involve themselves in the process, ask questions, offer feedback, and make a contribution. This may seem scary to a business at first, but when embraced, it is a powerful way to discover the questions your clients are asking, and seeking, so you can deliver more via both information and products. Blogging is a powerful part of your marketing mix in today’s socially connected business world. The sooner you begin the better.
So what can your business blog about?
As with any kind of marketing, it begins and ends with your customer. This list is not meant to overwhelm you. It’s just a way of tapping into the information you probably already have in your head and on your hard drive. You already have the content, it just needs to be shared where others can see it.
- Answering frequently asked questions.
- Respond to current news and events that may influence your customer’s perspective.
- Share research or announcements that are of value for your industry.
- Share amusing stories (good and bad) that customers can relate to.
- How to videos and demonstrations.
- Step by step photographs, and before and afters.
But remember, less selling, more sharing that has a ‘What’s in it for me’ for the customer reading your blog post, and answer their unspoken questions.
Where do I Blog? Do I need a blog and a website for my business.
Ideally they will be integrated. Your blog will be on your website. Most blogging platforms can also operate as a website, with static pages such as Home, About, Services, Contact, and can even have a shopping cart. The platform I use personally is WordPress due to it’s simplicity to use for most people, and potential for growing as your business does. You can create one for free at www.wordpress.com or www.blogger.com or let me know if you would like one that you host yourself under your own domain name using the powerful WordPress platform that makes it super easy to manage.