Blogtastic blogging for business!

A business blog can be a great tool for small businesses, in helping them gain new customers and keep existing ones. To be a benefit, however, a business blog must be done well.

Statement 1: Business blogs can be a great tool for getting new customers and keeping existing customers

There is plenty of evidence that shows that blogs provide benefits to business and, indeed, small business. Here are just a few of the reasons why blogs can be an important tool:

  • A business blog can be an opportunity for you to share your skills and knowledge. You may even be able to position yourself as an expert in your field.
  • A business blog provides an opportunity for you to connect with people, build relationships and gain trust.
  • Sophisticated search engines (e.g. Google) provide rankings based on a large number of factors, including link popularity and regular updating of content. If you’re writing regular business articles and they’re popular enough to have other websites linking to them, you’ll be helping your website rank well in search engines.
  • Having a business blog can help you stand out from your competitors.
  • A business blog can make your business appear more approachable, friendly and open.

Statement 2: If a blog is done well

The second statement is just as important because if your business blog sucks it won’t be beneficial to your business. It may in fact do it harm. This doesn’t mean you need to be a Pulitzer Prize winner to consider writing articles and starting a blog. But it is important to keep some valuable points in mind:

  • One of my first recommendations to those considering a business blog is don’t do it if you can’t do it regularly. While an article every day or every week isn’t a necessity, if you can only post a new blog article every 3 to 6 months you should put a blog on the back-burner or get someone to help you.
  • Engage your readers by:
    • Solving their problem
    • Keeping articles short and removing the irrelevant material
    • Having fun – blog articles don’t need to be too serious
    • Putting your personality into the articles
    • Encouraging comments and replies
    • Writing interesting headings and first paragraphs to hook people
    • Where appropriate, using bullet lists and sub-headings
  • Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion. While I wouldn’t encourage a business blog article to be highly controversial or offensive, it is a good idea to tell people what you think. Then give them the right of reply through comments.
  • Use some of your important keyword phrases in blog articles and headings for search engine optimisation.
  • Don’t try to sell in your blog articles, or at least do this irregularly.
  • Lastly, before you hit the ‘Publish’ button, check your article by proof reading and even reading it out loud. You’re not out to win an award from the style guide guild, but it’s not professional to publish articles with glaring mistakes.

Getting benefit from a business blog does take effort, however, it can pay off in the long run for many businesses. So start writing and publishing your blog today. You never know, you might have a lot of fun along the way!

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