Loads of web developers, digital marketing specialists and SEO gurus are now banging on about blogging – but does it work for business? What are you really going to get out of it and will you get a return on the time you have to spend?
A Case Study
This week I’ve been helping a client with her business blog. Her business coach told her that people buy from people who are experts in their field and who are generous with their knowledge – more or less what I’d been saying about why she should start a blog!
She’s written two so far and both times we’ve seen a big spike in her web traffic on the days she’s published her articles, and she’s had three new twitter followers from her target clients. Her web stats show that 75% of her traffic is coming from Linked In and Twitter, so it shows how important this activity is.
Your blog is your online platform which you can use to demonstrate your expertise and knowledge in your field. Ok, maybe you don’t have a 1000 email subscribers yet (it’s still possible) but when someone does go to your site they will see the articles you’ve published which show that you don’t just claim to be the best at what you do, but they can see for themselves that you know what you’re talking about, and you’re willing to share it with them.
Regularly updated website content helps to boost your search engine ranking as well as allowing you to target additional long tail key phrases that are appropriate to your business. You need to make sure your site is responding to the searches that your customers are making so think about the types of information they are looking for. And remember that users like to talk to their computer in the same way they would ask their friends, so phrase your searches using everyday language and questions. Once you’ve got visitors there, you really want to focus on getting them to come back, so offer an incentive for them to join your emailing list – and use it to alert them to new content each week when you post.
You can use your blogs, and social media, to reach out to the people you’re interested in forming relationships with (otherwise known as target clients). Follow their activity and see what interests them, comment on their activity, and add useful additional content where you can. Respond when they ask questions of their audience and you will start to feature on their radar. When you put out content that is targeted to their interests they are much more likely to take notice if you already have an online relationship. And it’s much more effective than cold calling or cold emailing, which everybody hates and nearly no-one responds to.
Try a 21st century alternative to direct marketing and let your knowledge and experience speak for itself.