Blog for Business: 9 reasons why you’re missing out!

If your running a business or are an entrepreneur and are trying to understand what this whole social media thing is about, and how a blog could possibly help, here are a few reasons why it is something to consider:

  1. Positioning your business as an industry specialist
  2. Positioning your personal brand as a thought leader
  3. Build trust and credibility by hosting blog directly on your business website
  4. Allow readers (potential consumers) to associate the content/value of your blog to your business and brand
  5. Increase organic traffic through improve searchability and SEO
  6. Increase direct traffic by giving potential consumers a reason to go to your site
  7. Build inter-organizational relationships,  leveraging already established networks
  8. Use your voice, create a more intimate experience for the consumer
  9. Story telling and building event/campaign momentum

If your interested in understanding more about blogging for business, and these points resonate with your online presence goals, please keep reading!

I would also love your input and thoughts on blogging for business. Are there any other key opportunities? What is your biggest struggle as a business or entrepreneur? Have you had any positive experiences with running a blog for business?

Whether you read the whole post or stop here I would love to hear your thoughts down in the comments, I greatly appreciate your time and contribution!

Thought Leadership and Specialist Positioning

The social media space has provided an incredible opportunity for businesses to share their knowledge and expertise with their audience. One of the most effective ways to build trust and credibility with a consumer is to offer valuable content and distinguish the business as an industry specialist, or thought leader.

Creating a blog for business allows businesses to offer this valuable content to their target audience facilitated through their website. Hosting a blog directly on your business site is very important because it gives the consumer (reader) the opportunity to connect the valuable content of your blog directly with your brand image. It is also important that you give these readers opportunities to easily share and spread your content. This is where have a presence in social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn is extremely valuable.

Search Engine Optimization and Searchability

While your business blog is going to create trust and credibility for the consumers who are visiting your site through a direct channel (referral, email, social media channel, newsletter), it is also creating a great opportunity for new organic traffic. This means that consumers who don’t know of your company, but are searching for the content (terms and keywords) your publishing, they will have the opportunity to find your blog, and hence your brand. The key here is creating a comprehensive strategy that aligns your target market with the content, terms, and keywords of your blog.

One of the experts in the field of copywriting and content marketing is Leah Baade. There is a great interview facilitated by LinkBuildr’s blog where Leah discusses the value of blogging for business, SEO, and social media strategy!

I would also highly recommend checking out Leah’s blog on content marketing, social media, and SEO!

Another great place to understand more about SEO, and blogging for business is the Social Media Examiners post on the Ultimate Blogger’s Guide to Search Engine Optimization

Building Inter-Organizational Relationships

Blogging for business also creates a great opportunity for collaboration with your business blog, which is an instrumental tool in growing awareness and building relationships in your industry or field.

Again, just like any aspect of your social media or online presence strategy, you must identify your target audience/market and understand how this group perceives value.

Once you understand how you can deliver value to your audience you can begin to look for other organizations with a online presence that are discussing topics relevant to your field. Whether it is through highlighting their work and referring back to their content via links, or asking them if they would like to exchange guest posts, this is a great opportunity to develop a mutual relationship.

This does two very important things:

  1. It gives your subject matter more credibility, especially if your sources are credible and established themselves.
  2. It gives the organizations you highlight incentive to share your content with their audience.
    1. This is only true of course if the quality of your content is good and you portray any references in a positive light. This too is important as the better job you do of highlighting or referencing, the more likely the organization or person may return the favor!

Using Your Voice

A blog is a way for your consumers or audience to get to know you or your business more personally. Whether you represent yourself, or a business, finding and leveraging your unique voice is important. While the majority of a business sites content is static and relatively lifeless, the blog is a place where you can let some of your organizations personality come through, this creates a much more intimate experience with the reader. This personal experience translates into more trust and less resistance in the company. You can take this concept a step further and highlight the author with a small picture and description at the end of the post, giving the reader even more personal connection to the content, and the company!

Note: It is always important that the voice of the blog is consistent and aligns with the values and voice of the organization (this is straight forward when it is a personal brand).

Someone who does this incredibly well is Amanda Munro, who keeps a personal blog of motivation, insights, and learning. She has conducted several motivational campaigns through this blog and it is a great representation of her personal brand and what she stands for!

Campaign Building and Story Telling

Having a business blog is a great way to both generate buzz and excitement leading up to a big offline event, as well as continuing that momentum by bringing the event back online when it is over. This is a powerful strategy when executed properly.  Ajay Masala Puri is someone who specializes in this area, and I wrote about his insights on using social media to build, document, and generate momentum around a campaign or movement.

Consistency is Key

Social media and online presence is an interesting space. Organizations know they need to be there, but may not necessarily know the steps, or understand how to create a comprehensive strategy. This deters many businesses from even trying. Then there are some businesses who jump in without a strategy, and quickly realize they have no understanding of Return on Investment, or how to measure their progress…

This has left the door open for companies who are willing to  invest in developing a comprehensive social media and online presence strategy to fill this space.

It won’t happen overnight, but consistency is the key, and if you can commit to your strategy, there is huge opportunity waiting!

3 Comments

  1. The PR Life June 18, 2011 Reply

    Great post Tyrell! I don't think business owners realize how influential blogging can be on a relationship-building level. The customers/consumers/audiences have shifted their perception away from choosing the business that "has the most money" to choosing the businesses who have the best customer relations. Engaging with the audience, having information available before the customer even realizes they need it and responding authentically and quickly to any concern are now the most important factors when it comes to building that trust and credibility all business owners are striving to achieve.

  2. The PR Life June 18, 2011 Reply

    On a personal note, I feel as though I've got a lot to offer. Whether my readers are looking for social media ideas, customer engagement or ways to motivate yourself to achieve goals – I speak thoughtfully and honestly by means of my blog and have received excellent feedback. In order to sell yourself as a thought leader and expert in your field you've got to walk the walk AND talk the talk. If I was ever going to get people to believe I knew what I was talking about – I better be able to prove it. With the way social media (and blogging!) has changed the way we communicate we also must change the way we present ourselves. Speak from your heart, be honest, real and have confidence in what you have to offer and you will definitely succeed!

  3. @leahbaade July 11, 2011 Reply

    First of all, thanks for the shout out, Tyrell. I super appreciate it.

    This is a great post because so many businesses still aren't sold on the idea of blogging. It's so often just one more expense or pull on their company resources. The truth is blogging can really pay off – and not just in terms of SEO outcomes. It's exciting to work with businesses who start blogging and showing them their analytics stats. The jump in traffic can be tremendous!

    One of the most instantly rewarding aspects of blogging is having people comment on the blog. The platform opens the organization up for opportunities like never before. I've seen it in both the for-profit and not-for-profit realms. Not only is the blog an amazing way to let people know what your company is really all about, it gives them a feeling of being able to get involved first hand – even if they're just offering encouragement.

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