7 Things To Know About Blogging To Promote Your Business
Whether you’re a B2B, B2C, Fortune 500, or mom-and-pop, you know that 21st-century marketing involves more than a handshake and a business card. Chances are you’re juggling product and website development, industry expertise, tech savvy, social media, and blogging to promote your business.
And I would guess it all gets a bit overwhelming.
So let’s put our blinders on and focus on one of your highest ROI marketing tools: blogging.
There are differences between blogging as a hobby and blogging to promote your business. Probably the biggest difference lies in the requirement — or at least the self-discipline — to consistently publish.
When you’re blogging as a hobby, you’re indulging a creative outlet. In many ways, this format is akin to the origin of blogging, which was more about journaling with an audience.
The nice thing about this hobby approach is that you can write what you want, when you want. SEO and publishing calendars be damned!
You can also take advantage of a generous list of free and self-hosted blogging sites that make creative blogging easy.
Blogging for business purposes, however, comes with a honey-do list that can make the effort seem like a 180 from the free-spirited blogging. Structure vs. free-flow, schedule vs. whenever, purpose vs. whatever-strikes-your-fancy.
But fear not. Think of blogging as just one more component of your commitment to the amazing, world-changing brain-child that is your product or service.
Not sure how or why blogging will grow your business? Here are just a few of the benefits of business blogging:
- Generates leads from organic traffic
- Builds trust with your customers
- Builds brand reputation
- Keeps your business active on the web
To get you started, here are 7 things to know about blogging to promote your business:
Purpose is essential.
This may sound self-evident; and yet, many a blog has fizzled for lack of purpose.
Are you trying to teach something? Build your email list? Generate conversation with feedback and the sharing of ideas? Direct new traffic to your website? Sell a product or a service?
Having a firm grasp of your purpose, along with knowing your target audience, will dictate your content.
Your target audience dictates your content.
Knowing your purpose may be essential, but it’s of little use if you don’t know your audience.
Let’s say you sell a technical device designed to make technology less intimidating for senior citizens. You will obviously want to deliver “technical” content in a user-friendly, non-intimidating, bare-bones way.
Your visual, video and ancillary content will need to cater to this niche population, not to millennials who were born via WiFi.
Knowing your target audience will also help you decide where and how to share your blog and other content.
Is this audience better suited for emails, social media, or both? Is this a short-on-time, click-and-buy audience, or an older audience that loves conversation and building relationships?
In the same way that an athlete or sports team practices with its next opponent in mind, knowing your audience is key to successful blogging.
Quality content is imperative.
Hobby blogging is pretty forgiving because there’s really nothing to forgive. Unless you’re trying to monetize your blog, you set your own rules.
But, when blogging to promote your business, one of the biggest “rules” is that quality matters.
Remember that you’re directed by your purpose — educating, building authority in your industry, selling your product, etc.
And that authority thing is extremely important, as you have global competition vying for the same audience. You want your reader to bookmark your post because it’s so informative and well-written.
And you want Google to notice that you’re writing relevant, high-quality, sought-out content…and rank you accordingly.
Substance matters. Style matters. And — sorry not sorry — grammar and spelling matter.
You may have the makings of a blogging Pulitzer. But if a reader comes to your page and sees a wall of endless text, your bestseller might get passed over.
(Yes, we humans can be pretty superficial, even when it comes to inanimate stuff.)
Choosing a good hosting site and premium theme will help you create a visually inviting and well-organized blog.
Window shopping, after all, is about getting new customers in the door.
You don’t have to do it all alone.
One of the best advantages of blogging to promote your business is that you can get a huge return on your investment.
If you’re writing quality content on a regular, consistent basis, you can develop promotional relationships with other bloggers. You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours. You link to my blog, I’ll link to yours. You give me a bump on social media, I’ll do the same for you.
Blogging becomes a forum for sharing information for the benefit of your audience. And sometimes that means bringing in guest bloggers, influencers, and thought leaders.
Share the spotlight. There’s enough to go around when you’re producing good work for the right reasons.
One blog, many forms.
Blogging takes a lot of time and discipline. And, let’s face it, you’re not likely to feel like sitting down to pump out 1,800 words every time you have a blog scheduled.
That’s why mixing up your format can give you both a writing reprieve and a creative outlet.
Perhaps you want to make your regular weekend-preview blog a Friday Funday by posting a video blog. And once a month you do an interview with a leading expert or influencer in your niche.
You can also host another blogger for one post. Or simply update an old blog that received a big response.
Mix it up, add visuals and moving parts, and give your audience something to look forward to.
Conversion is a process built on relationship.
Your end goal may be a spike in your bank account. But the process of getting there involves a lot more than a hard sell or buy-buy-buy mentality.
There’s too much competition in a fast-paced format to indulge the notion that you own your niche market. Consumers want to be informed, and they want to trust the entities with which they do business.
Think about how much more has to go into building trust with someone you never meet in person. And approach your blogging from that perspective.
The conversion to revenue will come when you have embraced the role of blogging as a means of answering your audience’s questions.
The axiom is true: People buy from those they know, like, and trust.
Blogging is one of the best ways to promote your business and build solid, sustainable relationships with your customers. And it’s worth the investment of time to do it well.
Click here for more proven and powerful must-know tips about writing blogs for business.