Having a blog for your business is a must in the 21st century.
It’s not just something pretty for people to look at. So much business is content-driven anymore that not being able to produce something for the public to latch onto is a huge mistake. You wind up missing out on leads, which are potential clients, and hits to your website. All of this represents possible interaction with your brand that could be making you money.
We all like to make money.
What’s a blog?
A blog is a form of web content that’s written in a conversational tone and meant to educate or inform. It’s kind of like keeping an online diary, except you’re not usually writing your deepest secrets (and it’s harder to doodle on). Most businesses use their blogs to share their expertise on whatever they do. Some use them to share news about the business, talk about specials and sales, or even share new products and reviews. There are blogs for everything, no matter how niche they might be.
They’re a great way to prove that you know what you’re talking about without having to rehearse an elevator pitch.
What will a blog do for my business?
Over 27 million pieces of content are shared per year: videos, images, articles, you name it. Blog posts are content. A business that has a blog gets 88% more leads than a business that doesn’t — leads mean sales, clients, information that results in clients. That’s what brings in money.
Websites that are regularly updated have a higher chance of showing up on a Google search when someone’s looking for something specific, such as “your town” “business type”. A website with a regularly-updated blog — at least once per week — shows up more often than a site that is completely lacking, or doesn’t post very much. Other things that improve your site’s ranking on Google include proper use of keywords and content that is actually valuable. You don’t want to be putting out a website that’s just a list of phone numbers with no context, or is otherwise outdated and badly-written.
Yes, Google pays attention to these things.
A business blog also allows you to showcase what you do. From sharing your latest projects to answering questions about your business, you’re provided with the tools to really help people get to know how you can help them solve a problem. That’s why you’re in business, right? To solve problems? With a blog you can do that in a way that people can keep up with and keep coming back to.
You know what else a blog lets you do? It lets you gather contact information from potential clients and figure out who’s interested in what you do, so you can reach out to them and offer to help. You can’t really do that with a phonebook anymore — people tend to frown on random phonecalls. But with a simple form from MailChimp, for example, you can be prepared to build up your list of contacts for future use. More on that in another post. 😉
How do I set up a blog?
It depends. The easiest way is to follow Gina Horkey’s advice and set one up with WordPress. Most website hosts make it fairly painless to add to your site — though I can always do it for you.
Once set up, WordPress has a wide variety of plug-ins and themes to help make running your blog a breeze. It’s easy to add pages, posts, menus, and more. There are plug-ins for every functionality you’d want on your blog. There’s a reason I’ve been using WordPress since 2008, after all — and its ease of use is but one part of the whole puzzle.
It’s incredibly flexible.
Okay, I’m done singing the praises of WordPress. Moving on!
If your business doesn’t have a blog then you’re missing out on opportunities to get your brand out there and working for you. Not tech savvy? Don’t know what to do or how to do it, or even just intimidated by the whole process? I can help you. I promise you that having a blog for your business will help, not hurt … as long as you follow some simple rules that I’ll be going over next week.