To blog or not to blog … that is the question. I have discovered many business owners scratching their heads, pondering if a blog is good for business.
Many schools of thought exist on the subject. Some believe:
- Only the 20-something crowd blogs and that blogging has no place in a business setting
- Blogging is like collecting stamps, a passing hobby that people with a lot of extra time on their hands find intriguing
- If you’re not blogging, you’re not serious about your business
- I see a blank page before me and run the other way
No matter what you think about blogging, many businesses are finding that it’s actually upping their exposure within their target market and getting their business noticed.
Here’s what I know about blogs and how they can reshape your business.
Blogging is the new WOM (Word of Mouth) Situation #1: Client A is looking to promote his business. He has a limited advertising budget, but wants to make a splash and provide information to his client base and potential clients. His goal? When they need his product, his business is top of mind.
Since Client A sells financial services, and many people are currently skeptical of this industry, a blog is the perfect avenue for Client A to take. By helping loyal clients and future prospects understand the current economic situation in addition to offering them step-by-step strategies to ease their situation, Client A has instantly become a resource readers can turn to when they need financial advice. Through his blog, Client A has proven himself in front of potential leads, and they haven’t even had to pay for his advice. What’s more? Now that he has established a following by blogging for over 5 months,with nothing more than time invested, many of his readers are telling their friends to check out Client A’s blog. In fact, many of them have in turn become clients themselves.
Excuse me but why so many excuses? Situation #2 I have heard it a million times:
- “I hate to write.”
- “Are you kidding? I don’t have time to write.”
- “Oh come on, you know this is just a fad.”
Here’s what I know about Client B’s experience. She launches a new product and while most of the people in her area know about her product, the business professionals across the nation don’t. She has a website that explains her product in depth, but many people still don’t understand the benefits the product offers their business. So why not try a blog?
As you have already read her objections above, she isn’t an easy sell on the blog front. I can bring in the stats. I will show her examples. I even encourage her try blogging out on a subject she finds interesting and not tied to her business. She still remains skeptical.
This is where I sit down with many of my clients just like her to pinpoint what items keeps them from blogging. Bottom line, most hate to write and often tell me there’s nothing worse than looking at a blank page, knowing that some of your marketing dollars are sitting there and time is wasting away when they feel they have nothing to say. I understand, time is money.
So this is where we devise a plan. Each week she and I can sit down for 30 minutes while she walks me through how the product impacts her client base that week. I personally write the blog from a marketing perspective (I do this for many of my clients) and at the end of the blog, always place her contact info at the bottom of the post so potential clients can call her with questions and she can do what she does best, sell her product. Now, she has a blog people can frequently consult and I have a relationship with a client that provides both of us with a new way of thinking about targeting new customers.
Bottom line blogs are a way for businesses to provide expertise, support and educational value to their customer’s experience. A business blog allows business owners a way to constantly update their client base with new findings, new product arrivals or even offer advice on why your product might be better than your competition, this is the route you should take. You can build a website, and I highly recommend that in conjunction with a blog, however a blog is a place where you can easily update and maintain a running dialog with your customers. What’s more, you can gather your customer’s comments and easily determine where your business is doing well and where you might need to opt for some improvements.
A blog is a place where you can create a voice for your company and command a presence online.
For more information about how blogging can boost your business contact me and I can share more concrete information with you that is tailored to your business’ specific needs.