You may love it, you may hate it, you may look upon it as unnecessary, you may envy other peoples’, you may want to do it yourself but can’t find the time, you may have even started one and run out of steam…
What are we talking about here? Blogs and blogging, that’s what.
Wherever you stand on blogging, there is no doubt that it’s a hot topic at the moment. Although, I’m hoping it’s safe to assume that you’re at least a little bit of a blogging fan as you’re reading one right now (surprise!). Lots of people seem to be blogging. If you search the Internet you can find literally thousands of blogs out there talking about everything from babies and activity ideas to public service tendering and living a green life.
Blogging, however foreign it may seem, is not the exclusive reserve of any one sector. Anyone can blog and any business may be able to benefit from keeping up a regular blog. Here I explore just a few reasons why having a blog might help you, whatever your area of business, expertise or interest. So please, read on.
Whether as a stand alone blog, or as part of your website, a blog can add interest to your business, create new audiences and add to the value your customers and potential customers can get from you. Below are some of the top reasons why you shouldn’t miss out on the phenomenon that is blogging.
- Brand building: Everything that you say on behalf of your business, be it on your website, in your brochures or directly to your customers, forms part of the brand of your business. Your blog is no different. Write helpful, interesting blog posts and your brand could be strengthened and improved beyond recognition.
- Set yourself or your business up as an expert in your field: It’s as simple as that really. The more you blog about your business area, problems people may face and ways in which they could solve those problems, the more you set your business up as an expert in that area. Give good advice and readers of your blog are more likely to turn to your business for help when they need it.
- Stand out from the crowd: It may well be that your competitors already have blogs. So why run the risk of falling behind and being unable to offer something that they can? A blog, carefully planned and written, can help set you apart from other similar businesses in your sector.
- Increase and retain traffic for your website: In laymens’ terms, get more people to visit your website and encourage them to stay there longer. The average visitor may pop along to your site to find your contact details or to search for a particular product or piece of information resulting in a short visit. However, if you have a blog that offers up to date, helpful information, those visitors may be drawn to spend longer on your website and explore more of the site while they’re there. All this helps to cement your business or brand in their minds for future use.
- Start a discussion: Encouraging people to comment on your blog post is the perfect way to open up dialogues between you and your customers, potential customers or business partners. Communication is always good and this just adds another string to your business bow.
- Going that extra mile: The correct use of a blog, ie not just using it as a sales tool, adds a great deal of value for customers. Writing helpful, interesting blog posts filled with advice, problem solving strategies and information will increase your readers’ trust in you and your business. The most successful businesses help their customers, not just sell to them.
- Keeping you up to date: Writing a regular blog post around something that your business is involved in forces you to stay up to date with the latest happenings in your sector. Blogging is an excellent way to ensure you’re bang on the nose should customers need the latest news, safety guidelines, advice, product benefits etc. Blogging really will help you to stand out as an expert.
- Provide a human face to the business: Writing as an individual, rather than as a business as a whole, enables your readers to put a human face on your company. People do business with people, so keep it more personal than stuffy and overly professional. People like that. They just do.
- Improve your search enging rankings: Search engines, such as Google and Yahoo, love websites that are regularly updated. Blogs are the perfect way of achieving this. A blog that is updated (a new blog post posted) even just a couple of times a month, will appear higher on the search engine rankings than one that is static and unchanging. So get updating!
So there we have it. Are you convinced yet?
What’s your view on the topic of blogging? Get commenting, I’d love to know.