Have you started a business blog yet?
Or have you started, uploaded a couple of posts and then let it fade?
I mean, you have other stuff to do, right? You know, designing, coaching or whatever it is that your clients pay you to do…
I get it. Blogging takes time and it takes effort.
You have to set aside time to research, write and (for the love of the wee man don’t forget this bit), promote your blog posts.
Given the whole ‘time and effort’ objection to blogging, you might wonder why I made such a big deal of it in my previous post ‘How to market your business when you’re broke’. Sure, it’s free but is it really worth the hassle?
In a word, yes!
Now, if you’re happy to take my word for it, then you can go and get started right now.
If you still need a bit of convincing, I’ve listed below the most basic benefits you’ll get from starting your own business blog.
1. Improved SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)
Now, many copywriters are SEO experts—I am not. I’m not super- techy and they keep moving the damn goalposts on this one. Google changes its algorithms more often than I change my mind about my favourite Game of Thrones character.
One thing that remains constant though, is that search engines love fresh content.
There is absolutely no point getting yourself an all-singing, all-dancing website and then letting it stagnate.
And that’s what’ll happen if you don’t keep updating your content. All of the well cared for websites, with new and exciting content will float to the top of the search pile, leaving yours to sink lower and lower into the depths.
It’s heartbreaking. Especially if you paid a fortune setting up your site in the first place!
The easiest way to introduce fresh content to your website: a blog.
While we’re talking search engines, it’s worth knowing about long-tail keywords. This is something that probably deserves a post of its very own but I’m going to stick with just a simple explanation for now.
What are long-tail keywords and how are they going to help your business?
Let’s take my own business as an example. A relevant long-tail keyword might be ‘how to write a great landing page’. In search engine terms, this is going to have far less competition than the more generic ‘copywriter’ or ‘marketing copy’.
The more long-tail keywords your website contains, the more people will be able to find it —providing you are not jamming keywords in just for the sake of it. (Don’t do this! Google will recognise that you’re trying to cheat the system and will penalise you for it. Always remember you’re writing for people, not search engines).
Blog posts are a brilliant way of naturally incorporating long-tail keywords into your website.
3. Building relationships
Blogging is NOT about making sales. Increased sales will happen further down the line, but when you’re writing it’s worth remembering that the main purpose of your blog is to help your customers.
Before you even start blogging, it’s a good idea to spend some time putting together a strategy.
Consider who your customers are, what they want to know and how you can help them. What kind of topics could you cover that will improve their lives or their businesses?
Assuming you’re providing useful content and showing a bit of personality, your customers will come to know, like and trust you. When they get to the point that they’re ready to buy, they’re far more likely to come to you, the person they know, like and trust.
4. Establishing credibility
In a similar vein, by posting useful information about your industry you’re proving to your audience that you know your stuff.
Diplomas and qualifications are great but producing relevant content highlights that you are constantly honing your skills and keeping your knowledge fresh.
This shows your professionalism and your expertise —and instils confidence in your customers.
5. Getting to know your customers
When you’re blogging, invite your readers to comment on your posts. The conversations that can ensue here are a goldmine.
Are customers frequently asking the same questions? Great, there’s a topic for a new blog post or even a new page on your website.
Is there a recurring problem with one of your products? Great, now you know about it, you can fix it and tell everyone about the improvements you’ve made.
Maybe some of the comments are highlighting a particular problem that your clients are experiencing — here’s an opportunity for you develop or repackage one of your products or services.
6.Improve your industry knowledge
Not every blog post you write will require research. You are writing about your own industry after all. Some will though and when you’re researching these topics, I guarantee that you’ll improve your professional knowledge along the way. This will ultimately improve the service you’re offering your clients and help you grow your business.
I’ve mentioned it before but it’s worth saying again:
Promote your posts!
There is no point in writing a post that no one will ever read. As soon as you’ve hit publish, promote your post on every social media account you have, including your personal ones.
It is also worth adding any new posts to your newsletter or automatically emailing any new content to your email subscribers.
This is a great way to increase your visibility and stay at the forefront of your customer’s minds.
I’d love to know…
If you were on the fence about starting a blog, has any of the info here changed your mind one way or the other?
Have I missed anything out?
If you’ve been blogging for a while and spotted an obvious benefit that I haven’t mentioned here, let me know!
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