Whatever venture, whether online or brick & mortar, you are pursuing, an online presence is paramount to your success. The internet provides the largest forum for connecting with a wide variety of people. If you are looking for a way to show off your expertise and also make a little money while doing it, you must start a blog.
What is a Blog?
A blog is actually an online magazine or newsletter. You can publish daily (or even several times a day), weekly, or monthly. With a blog you can upload posts about anything that you want. Many people create personal blogs as a way to keep in touch with family members. Pictures, videos and other information are uploaded so your loved ones are current with what is going on with you.
We are going to discuss business blogs. Leverage your business blog to attract traffic to your website, educate customers about your products or services, and inform your customers and potential customers about you and your business. The basic elements your business blog needs:
- Interesting, informative and entertaining content
- Marketing, including social media marketing, to attract visitors
- Appropriate SEO
How to Start a Business Blog
Many ecommerce sites like Shopify provide a blog platform within the ecommerce site. Built-in blogs are a great option to get started. If you don’t have a website that offers a blog platform you will need to explore other options.
If you are new to blogging, use a free blogging platform to get your feet wet. Sites like Blogger.com, Wordpress.org, Blogspot.com and others offer free blogs to users. Depending on the site you choose, the themes and plug-ins (added features) will vary. Most will walk you through the process step by step so that you can be up and running in no time. (Need help? Contact Me)
What to Publish
Your business blog should concentrate on providing information to your customers and potential customers. If someone has reached your blog, they want to learn about your business.
Here are a few great examples:
Beauty and Cherries A great resource of information about blogging. The posts are clean and informative with little fluff.
Dinosaur Stew A web design service (whose site is gorgeous) that provides great information on their blog. Great inspiration as well as useful content.
Krista Rae Another web design service with an inspiring site and tons of information.
The BIG boys:
Container Store This blog is an outreach to potential employees and customers about their culture and social programs. This is a great example of selling your business through commitment to improving communities.
Disney Blog Yes, I know, it’s Disney. But this blog (and the associated social media) are at the top of the game in creating a community of fans. The blog is about park updates, holiday and special events, food offerings, and much more. It is equal parts informative and entertainment. A great aspirational example.
So you know you need a blog, now you have to create interesting posts. Here are some ideas to get you started:
How to use a product
Success story from a client
Tips & Best Practices
Company and Production Updates
Resources for your audience
Checklists and Planners
How to guide
FAQ about your services
Personal posts to connect with your customers
Why you chose your business
Engage with your customers
Post a survey
Reaction to industry news
Predictions for advancement in your industry
Ask a question and invite customer response
Ready to start? Don’t delay. You won’t have a successful blog until you actually start writing and publishing.
What’s next? Traffic. (No, you don’t have to go sit in traffic on the highway!) You have to generate traffic for your blog. When people are reading your blog you will be able to convert sales, sell ad space, even try affiliate marketing to earn extra income. Keep reading, the next post is about generating traffic: