Creating and writing blogs for some people can seem like a chore and hard work, with difficulty to see what their point is. Yet blogs form both a central part of content marketing – which is key to SEO with google and social media, but also customer relationships.
Creating a blog means you are giving something, rather than asking for something. This can make a huge difference in people’s expectation of your business. Good blogs, and promotion of the blogs can also build up trust in your business. By showcasing your expertise and knowledge through advice and tips, then trust will be generated more easily.
Content and blogs lasts a lot longer than paid for advertising, which is only live as long as you pay. Content can be found and referred to months after it was written.
Blogs are cost-effective in regards to the fact that it just takes time. If you plan and aim for at least one blog a month, then you'll be on the right track. But for many small businesses especially, this is easier said than done as other commitments generally get in the way. So there is the potential to outsource the content writing to an expert. There will be a cost for this, but then it should be considered to be an investment for the future of your business - just make sure you utilise the content in as many ways as you can to make the most out of it!
The organic long-term value of blogs and content can be more impactful than spending hundreds on lead generation. But it is not a quick fix for leads – you will have to spend money for this.
- Get a blog or content plan in place for each month.
- Start off with one topic a month, research it, provide your opinion and make sure its gives interest, Plus make sure you proof read it – too many mistakes will put people off!
- Decide how you are going to share your blog – so via social media, or your email base for example.
- Plan to write about a range of subjects – so for example industry news that impacts your sector. Or new products you are launching and why, or advice on the benefits of a product. Think outside the box, come from different angles.
- Use a guest supplier or partner to provide blogs – so if you work with someone in your sector ask them for a blog on something they do that’s related.
- Look at leaders in your sector, what do they do? How can you create messages for your products and services that will give value to the reader?
- Be consistent – try to stick to a regular release of blogs. It shows you are keeping up to date with things.
Blogs help give insight into you and your business. If you are a small business and you are writing your blogs, then your personality will come through, from the tone of voice you are using though to the opinions and thoughts given.
Larger business can sometimes struggle with this, as the tone can be more formal, and there can be less passion about a topic. Strong brand guidelines are required in this situation.
Blogging isn’t just about reaching your customers, it’s also connecting with your peers, with industry publications and news channels and finding possible partnerships in your sector.
Be consistent so people can start to expect to see something from you.
If you give out hints and tips regularly about beauty for example, then ensure you meet expectations to keep this going. Google will also review (or crawl) your site on a regular basis, and finding new and relevant content will help you feature more prominently in rankings.
The customers view
For most topics, then looking at it from the customer’s point of view is key. What interests them, what can help them, what should they consider or understand.
You are the expert on your business with lots of knowledge for your sector, but don’t assume everyone else knows the same. They would like to learn more, hear more and be given tips that can help them in various ways. Of course, don’t speak down to people either, make sure you are being helpful and not condescending.
Customers are looking for ways in which to get the most out of your products or services, so make it easy for them, and create custom content that gives them solutions, advice and guidance.
Blogs can help you with each of the below:
- Brand awareness
- Lead generation
- Lead nurturing
- Customer retention
- Customer referrals
- Cross sell / Up sell
It’s not just about using blogs as a tool to acquire new customers. It’s about keeping them on board with you for the long-term. They help up newsletter sign-ups, so growing your prospect database for future sales opportunities. Blogs can feature in activity for all of the above, you just need to plan in where and how to communicate your blogs effectively according to where your customers are in their life-cycle with you.
Emma from Hello Marketing has 20 years experience in marketing, most of which is in Financial Services. To get in touch to find out more about her marketing services for small businesses just email email@example.com.