Thinking of writing a blog for your business? Read on for advice on how best to do this and why it could be a smart move for finding new customers.
In the past, paid advertising was the backbone of marketing communications.
Whether you used print, radio, TV, flyers, sandwich boards, or any other information-delivery mechanism, the whole push — and push describes it perfectly — was to elbow your way in front of prospective customers with messages that aimed to grab their awareness, gain their interest, and stimulate their desire to buy whatever you were advertising.
However, advertising is an expensive way to find and attract new customers, especially for new and small businesses.
In recent years there’s been a shift away from push marketing to pull or ‘inbound marketing’ that draws new and potential customers into two-way conversations by providing them with useful information (or ‘content’) that is directly relevant to their needs and can help them understand why you have the answer.
One of the easiest ways to develop content is to start and commit to a blog that becomes the hub of your product or service with blog posts that can be shared through multiple channels including email, RSS feeds, newsletters and social media tools like Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
Regularly updated, relevant and useful blog content will give your website SEO a boost and also provide you with things for you and others to share on social media and email campaigns.
Since late 2012, this Sage One blog has been a great way for us to attract new and existing customers to our site, providing them with latest news and updates about our service and tips and advice on starting and running their own business.
But how could you start using blogs to raise awareness of yourself, your product or service?
Jim Connolly (jimsmarketingblog.com) said:
“My top tip for business bloggers is to embrace your uniqueness. The vast majority of business blogs in any niche are very similar. They say the same kind of things and follow the same generic rules. So, they fail to stand out, struggle to attract readers and generally achieve very little.”
“Successful business blogs are different. They’re written by informed people, with the courage to say what they think. They provide useful information, which readers value and connect with. his is of enormous commercial value. In short: The average blog makes a noise. The best blogs make a difference.”
Matthew Woodward (www.matthewwoodward.co.uk) added:
“Social media and specifically Twitter is essentially a realtime database of people telling you what they want. If you use something like HootSuite you can monitor searches in realtime and engage people in the moment.”
“For example I listen for the term ‘start a blog’ and when I see someone mention that I engage them in conversation/offer tips. After a few Tweets back and forth I link them to a relevant tutorial on my site earning me a new subscriber and affiliate commission.
You can apply the same methodology across nearly every niche you can think of – you would be surprised how many people Tweet about embarrassing problems that you might just have the cure for.”
And in our exclusive interview with him for this blog last year, marketing guru and bestselling author Seth Godin (sethgodin.typepad.com), said:
“I think ‘inbound marketing’ is a smart way to describe the current truth, which is that it’s just too expensive to reach out to people who don’t want to hear from you. So inbound pushes the organisation to be the sort of organisation that is wanted.” (Read the full interview here).
Are you blogging for business?
Have you started blogging for business? Do you find it easy or hard and do you have any tips of your own to share? If so, please post them in the Comments box below with a description and link back to your blog.