Start a blog. That’s the standard business advice for business owners who have a website. However many business owners don’t really understand why they should start a blog. After all, writing a blog sounds a little self-indulgent. Don’t you need to be a great writer? Who would actually read it?
Perhaps you’re not much of a writer. Maybe you don’t know how to set up a blog or perhaps you don’t know what to write about. Maybe you just think that writing a blog looks like a lot of hard work. Writing a blog does take commitment and may take a little trial and error before you work out exactly what type of blog will work for you.
However writing a blog can be a great thing for your business and there are many reasons why you should start a blog as soon as you can.
Here are my top 8 reasons why you should start a blog for your business:
To optimise your website for the search engines
You’ve gone to all the trouble to get a website. It looks great and you love it. The next step is to make sure that Google and the other search engines will be able to find it. For the search engines to find your website it will need to have words on it, the words that your potential customers are searching for. Your website will also need to be dynamic, with new content added regularly.
The easiest way to meet these requirements is to include a blog on your website. By including a blog you can add blog posts that use the keywords that your potential customers are looking for. And by committing to a regular blogging schedule, whether it’s once a week or once a month, you will ensure that new content is being added to your website on a regular basis.
If the success of your business relies on your website ranking in the search engines then the decision to start a blog is really a no-brainer.
Give your customers an opportunity to get to know, like and trust you
Let’s assume that a potential customer visits your website. Why would they then choose to buy your product or service?
They don’t know you.
They don’t know if you can really help them.
They don’t know if you really know what you’re talking about.
Until they find your blog.
After reading a few of your articles they now feel like they know you a little better. Perhaps they like what they read and feel confident that you actually know what you’re talking about.
The more your potential customers know, like and trust you the more likely it is that they will eventual buy from you and your blog can be a perfect tool to help you to achieve that goal.
Give your readers some great free advice
If you genuinely want to help your customers then your blog is a great way to do that. Not everyone will be able to afford your products or services. For some they’re just not ready to buy right now. It feels great to be able to help those people anyway and your blog is the perfect tool to do just that.
On the flip-side, If you have people regularly asking you for free advice or to ‘pick your brain’ your blog can also be a great tool for referring these people to your content. Sometimes you just know that a person has no intention of ever buying from you. So rather than wasting a huge amount of your valuable time giving these people free advice, why not refer them to your blog for all the information they need.
Keep you focused on solving your customers biggest problems
One of the toughest parts of writing a blog is to come up with new topics to write about. To think of new topics over and over again requires focus on what your customers really care about. Having this focus will not only help you to dream up new blog topics however it will also help you to serve your paying customers in your business as well.
Regular writing improves your writing skills
You might not think of yourself as much of a writer. That’s fine, you actually don’t need to be a talented writer to start a blog. Blogs come in many shapes and sizes. Some blogs consist mainly of photos, instructions or recipes. Some blog articles are as short as 300 words, some as long as 5,000.
Your blog is a great place to practice and improve your writing skills. The only way you’ll ever find your voice and your writing groove is to actually do it. Consistency is the key and consistency will pay off.
Shows your customers that you understand their problems
Your potential customers have come to you because they have a problem. They need your product or your expertise however they might be worried. What if your product or service isn’t actually what they really need?
What if purchasing your product or service is a big mistake? Through your blog you can assure these customers what you really do understand their problem and that your product or service can solve that problem for them.
Attract the kind of customers you really want to work with
There are some people who you just love to work with. People who really get what you’re all about. They love your products and services and they’re happy to tell others all about you. These are the people who are an absolute joy to work with. They are the people who connect with your personality and your style. They are people who will want to read your blog.
Write your blog for these people. Attract more of them to your business and hopefully soon you’ll be working exclusively with your ideal customers.
Learn more about your customers
One week you might write a blog article and get lots of comments and interaction. The next week you might get nothing. Don’t get disheartened, this is how you can learn about your customers.
This is how you can find out for sure whether they’re interested in a particular topic or in the new product or service you’re thinking of offering. Test your ideas. Find out what’s resonating with your readers and build your business based on what you learn.