Blogs: You’ve probably either read a blog, have written a few posts, don’t understand them, don’t see the value, are intrigued but don’t know where to start, or think its for the kids. But very few business owners I’ve come across understand the reasons WHY you should be blogging, and actually commit to blogging successfully. Blogging is a key for a local businesses internet marketing strategy, and here are 17 reasons why you should start today:
1 ) Search engines LOVE it – This should be enough reason to start blogging by itself. It’s proven that search engines love unique fresh content. Keep yourself getting found by the search engines by consistently creating new fresh content to index.
2 ) Be the Industry Expert – Blogging allows you to create new content on your industry. Prospects are researching products and services more and more before they buy.Â Make yourself an expert in your field by providing your prospects with articles and facts that give them a reason to buy from you instead of the competition.
3 ) Consumers want to Learn, not be Sold – Lets face it… nobody cares about your products. They want to solve a problem or fulfill a need or want. When prospects are searching online, provide them with the information that they are looking for in your industry and move them closer to the sale. This will also build trust with your company.
4 ) Keep Yourself up to Date – We are all guilty of being a little lazy sometimes, and as much as an expert you think you are in your field, there’s always more to learn. Consistently blogging will force you to keep yourself up to date with new products, technology, updates, industry news, needs of prospects etc. It will keep you learning and on your toes.
5 ) Go Viral – People love sharing new and interesting things that they find, especially in their niche. If the new article, story, list is compelling enough, people will share it with their circle. All this leads back to you and your website, and new exposure to fans and followers that might not have known you existed before.
6 ) Connect with your prospects – Relationship selling. If you are not blogging does a prospect have any reason to keep coming back for more? Create an ongoing relationship with your prospects with new and interesting content. Speak to them consistently so you are on their mind when they are ready to buy.
7 ) Make Money – There are many ways to make direct cash from your blogging efforts. One easy way is to set up an affiliate network. There are many affiliate networks like Commission Junction which are fairly easy to set up so you can link to other sites that sell complimentary products and services, and take a commission of any products that get sold through you.
8 ) Create Touch Points – Do you have a long sales cycle for your business? In many B2B situations, high value products or seasonal businesses that require many months and touch points from reps to generate a sale, blogging is one of the easiest ways to stay in front of a prospect. I’m sure they are sick of reps calling them every few weeks asking if they are ready to buy yet… Try writing content, which gives you a reason to reach out to the prospect, and offers something of value that isn’t a sales pitch.
9 ) Increase your Social Network – Many businesses utilize social networks, but fail to generate content. Grow your fans and followers by giving them value through your writing. Many businesses are ReTweeting other business articles and information their customers will find interesting… why would you want to give the credit and followers to someone else?? Write unique content and have people follow you because you are the expert. Every time I write a new blog post, I see my fans start to grow.
10 ) Create Web Traffic – All your posts that end up on social networks will link back to you. The more fans, the more retweets, the more eyeballs that see what you are writing, the more will visit your site. Prospects will be led to you through an article that they wanted information about, but end up a customer after they visit your site. In the long run, its a numbers game, so create more traffic to your site through Blogging.
11 ) Content Lives on for Years – I’m sure at some point, you have been searching online for information, and have come across an article from years ago that had exactly what you were looking for. Online information doesn’t go away, but gets indexed for years to come. Write new content and create more avenues for people to find you for years to come.
12 ) Become a Resource – I’ll say it again. Nobody cares about your products. Be the go to person when people need help for what you offer. Your business will increase when you are looked at as a resource instead of a salesperson.
13 ) Don’t be a Brochure – Static brochure-like websites went out with the millennium. They don’t give anyone a reason to come back to you for more, and don’t generate new visitors to you. Create value to a visitor, and an actual reason to come back besides just listing your hours and contact info
14 ) Create a Buzz – Do you have a new promotion? Contest? Press release? Blogging is a great way to create a buzz and conversation among your fans and followers. Open the lines of conversation between you and your prospects and let them into your world.
15 ) Your Competition Is – If you aren’t already blogging, at least one of your competitors probably is. They are now the industry expert and information resource that is staying in contact with YOUR prospects. Change this or lose business.
16 ) SEO – Links, Links and more links. Blogging is one of the best ways to create links to your site and increase your SEO. Along with this, construct your articles to use keywords that have a high search volume for your industry to keep you high on searches.
17 ) Your Content HUB – Lastly and maybe most importantly, your blog should be your content HUB. This should be the connection point to your Facebook, Twitter, YouTube channel, Foursquare etc. All content that you push out to your social networks should lead back here. This is where people learn about you, research you, keep in contact with you, and decide that they want to do business with you. Make it count and give people a reason to pick you instead of your competition.