A blog has become one of the most powerful yet misunderstood ways of building your business. We attempt in this blog to outline why building a blog into your marketing plan is an important strategy that will ultimately lead you to greater success.
Let’s clarify first though what a blog is?
Historically, the first ever blog to be created was Links.net, created in 1994 by Justin Hall and initially referred to as a ‘personal homepage’. This then became a ‘weblog’ in 1997, until it became a ‘blog’ in 1999. The first decade of the 21st century witnessed an explosion of bloggers alongside the evolution of blogging platform technology. By the end of 2010 there was an estimated 152 million active blogs.
Today there are more than 600 million blogs. Yes, it might be a crowded market, but as a business owner you only need to concentrate on fulfilling your own small niche. So, if you’re a Kensington Dry Cleaners, for example, you only need to concentrate on creating a blog that is going to be informative and educational to your specific audience, rather than competing with 600 million other blogs.
What is the Purpose of a Blog?
A blog sits on your website and is a way of engaging with your target market in a way that is more educational, entertaining and informal. Going back to the example of a dry cleaners – through our blog you could include informative articles about some of the more challenging aspects of removing difficult everyday stains from certain items of clothing or giving ideas about what they can do to better look after more delicate items.
A cleverly written blog can be both easy and interesting to read, but also contains good search engine optimization with specific keywords which are commonly used search terms for your business. This can help you website as a whole to rank better in internet search engines so that your business features further up the list when someone is searching for London based dry cleaners (or whatever business you are in!)
Consistency is King
The mistake people often make is to not post blogs often enough, or regularly enough. This is perfectly understandable for many small businesses. Possibly you are not wordsmith – the thought of writing 600 to 1000 words every week fills you with dread. In addition, you have a business to run. A blog is probably not high on your list of priorities when your main focus is to be giving a good service to your current customer base.
These days those there are some excellent low cost resources for small businesses who need a helping hand. For example, freelance websites such as Fiverr advertise freelance writers from all over the world who can create relevant, SEO rich copy on your behalf at incredibly reasonable rates.
Learn to See Blog Opportunities Everywhere
At the moment you’re probably wondering where on earth you’re going to get ideas for blogs. Don’t despair, it’s just a mindset thing. You can soon learn to spot blogging opportunities everywhere, and relate them back to your business. Whether it’s a positive testimonial from a client, a major global event that has an impact on your business, a new product or innovation, a topical issue that can be related back, or even something more personal, maybe something you’re doing for a charity – there are no rules or regulations about what you can write. The most important thing is that it is your platform to share positive aspects about your business – and you have complete control over the contents.