5 Reasons Why Blogging Is Hard For So Many Small Business Owners
If you’re a small business owner, you know there is no rest for the weary. Margins are consistently tight, and there always seems to be “one more thing” you have to do to market yourself. Like blogging. You’re just trying to get your must-have product or service sold en masse before Christmas, and now you have to become a writer, too? Suddenly you’re realizing why blogging is hard for so many small business owners.
At least you’re not alone.
By now you’re probably sick of hearing why writing blogs will grow your business. Yes, you get excited by everything that leads to ca-ching. But you’re also painfully aware that time is actually your greatest commodity.
And it seems that, at every turn, some know-it-all business wizard is telling you to add five more hours to a 24-hour day. Oh, and that will also cost you “this much,” and you will need to take a tutorial “here” and register your blog “there.”
Seriously? At some point, behind your the-customer-is-always-right, “No-what-can-I-do-for-you?” smile, you really just want to know how to get the best bang for your buck. Time-wise, money-wise, effort-wise.
Yeah, we get it. You’re an inventor, a hand-shaker, a rainmaker…not a writer who has time to scour tomes of words in search of a Pulitzer phrase.
But this is the 21st century. Mail isn’t delivered on horseback, and deals aren’t made with a fall-harvest crop exchange. Mail is delivered by invisible byte-fairies, and deals are made without ever shaking hands.
Your website is your storefront. And you have a ton of competition, which means you need to know how to increase traffic to your website.
Damn blogging. (Surely you saw it coming.)
Before we talk about why blogging is hard for so many small business owners like yourself, let’s recall why it’s so important.
Blogging connects you to your audience. It gives you the opportunity to assume the role of “expert” in your niche. It helps you get a great place in line on Google. It gets you noticed on social media. It gives you longevity online. It gives you a forum for feedback.
Blogging also generates leads…which generate customers…who generate loyalty…which generates referrals…which generate more business.
Just how much business does blogging stir up? Consider that B2B companies that blog generate 67% more leads per month than those that don’t blog. They also have 434% more indexed pages (web pages that are recognized by Google) than businesses that don’t blog.
But, as you probably know by now, blogging is more than answering the “What’s on your mind?” prompt on Facebook. And that can be enough to make a small business owner dig in her high heels in hopes of getting around it.
Just so you can find comfort in company, let’s look at 5 reasons why blogging is hard for the small business owner.
Perhaps we can even rosey up your glasses and give you a new outlook on the task.
What the hell am I supposed to write about?
Kind of tough to write when you don’t have anything to write about. And we’ve all wasted plenty of time reading waste-of-webspace articles by “authors” who think that showing up is enough to get them noticed.
Having something to write about comes, in part, from the belief that you have something to say. And that, in large part, comes from confidence in yourself and your product or service.
You know what it’s like to be with someone who knows his product inside-out – and loves it. He believes in it, and he could talk all day about why he does. You can’t even change the subject without him doing a u-turn and – to your amazement – parallel parking in his niche.
If you’ve ever had a “weird” question that doesn’t show up in neon lights on Google, you’re not alone. We all have curiosities that are often difficult to put into words. But you know how grateful you are when you find that one article that speaks directly to your query. It’s as if someone out there is reading your mind.
In other words, just when you think there is nothing for you to write about, the ideas come flooding in.
Not quite convinced? Start keeping a list of all your ideas related to your business. Think about why and how you started your business. What was the need that wasn’t already being met? Who is the customer your product or service was designed to help? How does it accomplish that?
Need some prompts? Type your product or general topic into Google and jot down the autosuggestions that pop up. They will give you an idea of what people want to know.
I don’t have time.
This is a biggie when it comes to why blogging is so hard. Not only does blogging take time, but it takes frequency and consistency. It can’t be an I-have-an-extra-hour-and-an-idea-just-popped-into-my-head sort of thing.
Once or twice weekly just to get a chance at-bat. Four or more times weekly to hit it out of the park.
The “I don’t have time” reason may not have an overnight cure for you. But developing a discipline around blogging will help.
Create a schedule instead of relying on how you feel in the moment. Start the practice of timed writings. Set a timer for 20/40/60 minutes and just write until the alarm goes off. Don’t edit or criticize while writing. Just write. Let it flow, and then go back and package it all up nicely for publication.
I’m not a good writer.
Unfortunately, not many people are. Writing, like anything else, is a combination of proclivity, natural giftedness, and practice.
But don’t let the “I sucked in English” excuse stop you from this major component of your business. First of all, you can’t type from a phone or keyboard without the grammar guardians looking out for you. Spell check, Grammarly, and pop-up prompts are always looking out for you. Your primary focus should be on creating awesome content.
And, once you trust that you have something to say, you’re halfway there. Think about how you would talk with a friend. You want clean, proofread material, but you also want relatability and connection.
If typing out your “conversation” pains you that much, broaden your expression to formats like podcasts and YouTube videos.
I don’t understand all the technical stuff.
Blogging does involve some techie housework.
If you want your website to show up in organic searches, you will need to get familiar with search engine optimization (SEO). This will involve learning how to find out what people are searching for so you can develop relevant titles and subject matter. It will also involve learning how to build your content around keywords and structural guidelines.
Finally, you will have to learn how to create URL’s and publish your blog. If you have a website, you have already done a lot of the difficult set-up work of creating a home for your blog.
I just don’t want to.
Kudos for honesty! We could write an e-book on all the reasons why blogging is hard. But sometimes it all boils down to desire.
When you find yourself dreading the blogging have-to, you have a couple choices. One, you can find or create a way to make the task enjoyable (or at least not so painful).
Tap into your own internal motivators and use them to get the job done. Make a game of it. Compete with yourself. Set up a per diem writing goal and dangle an end-of-month reward for yourself. Ask your friends or customers for topics they would like to read about and write about them. Find a way to make the task enjoyable so you will show up to it consistently.
Secondly, you can hire a ghostwriter who will write in your voice and help you with any or all aspects of the blogging process.
For all the reasons why blogging is hard for small business owners, the benefits ultimately outweigh them.
Not sure you have something to say? Look at the product or service you have wagered your livelihood on. That speaks volumes. Be its voice for your audience.