The Internet is vital to your business.
If you don’t have a presence online, well, you’re making a huge mistake. Because it’s where the world turns it’s attention when it has problems.
Problems that you might be able to solve.
And, if they can’t find you, or your business, to solve those problems, they’re going to be spending their money with your competitors. Simple.
Even if you do have a website. Are you using it to it’s full potential?
- Engaging your customers?
- Establishing yourself as an authority?
- Building new leads on a daily basis?
- Finding sales in places you never knew existed?
But it’s not your fault. Knowing what do online is hard. It’s an ever-changing place where there are no right answers.
There is, however, one staple that has stood the test of time. It’s been here since you could first write words on the screen. And it’s not going anywhere fast. It’s also the reason you’re reading this article in the first place.
It’s a sure-fire way to put your business on the map. And you’re going to learn everything you need to know about how to do it in these next three articles.
What You’ll Learn Today…
In Part One of the ultimate guide to small business blogging, you’re going to learn:
- What all the fuss about blogging is
- Why you need one
- The five (mostly) scientific benefits of having a blog
- How to get started
- A simple goal to master your blogging in no time at all
If you’re ready, let’s get to work, shall we?
What The Heck Is A Blog?
I don’t want to teach you to suck eggs. But let’s take it back a step whilst I remind (or enlighten) you to what a blog is.
A blog, at the heart of it, is a space for you to share thoughts and information with others online. Anybody who reads it has a chance to learn from you and your insights.
Whether they’re about:
- How to brew beer
- The 7 best superheroes of the 1970’s
- Why Phil Collins shouldn’t be allowed to make music anymore
- The benefits of industrial refrigeration
- 70 hacks for a cleaner carpet
Whoever your audience are, you have a place to connect with them. The more knowledge you can impart, the more they want to read.
But where does this fit in with your business, I hear you say?
Well, in a lot of ways. Because having a blog on your website presents you with a lot of opportunities.
- Sell directly to people, without asking for their permission
- Drive lots of new people to your site with little effort
- Create lasting change in your industry
- Market yourself on more platforms
- Connect directly with new customers
- Establish yourself as a trustworthy authority
All from adding just one new page to your site. Go figure, right?
At the end of this article, you’re going to decide just how your blog will impact your business. But for now all you need to know is this:
It’s time for you to get (or use) your blog.
The 5 (Mostly) Scientific Benefits Of Business Blogging
So, you know what a blog is and that you need one for your site.
Now it’s time to look at some of the other benefits of having a blog. There are a lot. And, I mean a lot. There’s a reason content marketing has become a multi-million dollar industry.
But here’s the thing. Most articles about blogging, from experts come with a lot of speculation. Not cold hard facts. And you don’t want anything you’re going to spend your time on to be built on ‘maybes’ do you?
Instead let’s look at the cold hard facts of the benefits to blogging. The ones that have been studied and used by everyone from your local donut shop, to Fortune 500 Companies.
They also stand to put a lot more cash in your back pocket…
- You can establish yourself as an authority: If your blog answers the questions your audience has, you’ll quickly be seen as an authority in your field.That’s why you’re here on this blog right now, isn’t it?The more the reader learns, and acts on, the better your overall impact. You can’t really measure this point. But remember, it’s not who you know, it’s who you help.
- You’ll have better customer relationships: Blog’s allow transparency between you and your customers. Creating a bond you couldn’t through any other medium.Researchers discovered that by creating Relational posts on their blog (posts with a direct impact on the reader) they were able to “strike an emotional chord” and make the reader interact positively with their brand.
- You’re more likely to innovate and be creative: Having a business blog can bring together different parts of your company. Or put them under closer inspection. This brings around new thoughts and ideas.For example, this study from MIT argues that Blogging, and the community it creates, is the perfect platform for innovation within your company.
- You’ll be much more trustworthy: Conversations build trust. A blog is the perfect foundation for that.In fact, research suggests that if your business has a blog, it can be seen as more trustworthy than if it doesn’t.
- The Big One: You’ll have more traffic: Good content attracts people to your site. Whether that’s through: Social shares, Google searches or people visiting for your latest updates.Having a blog is guaranteed to drive more traffic to your site than not having one.
If these aren’t reason enough to have a blog, I don’t know what is. Starting a blog is low risk, for a potentially high reward. What have you got to lose?
If you’ve seen the light, let’s look at how you can get a blog on your site.
3 Quick And Easy Ways Set Up Your Blog
Getting a blog on your site isn’t hard. It can be done quickly and stress free.
These are three most effective ways of setting your blog:
#1: Check You Don’t Already Have One
If you’ve got a website already, check to see if you have one. It could be under a different name, such as:
If your blog has one of these pages you already have a blog and don’t even know it. That’s a lot of time and effort saved, right?
Also, if you have a custom made site, your developer may have a link to a blog for that you never used. It’s worth asking the question and saving yourself some hassle.
#2: Get A Bespoke Design
This is the most costly way.
But it has a great impact on branding, because it fits with everything else on your site.
This will set you back money with the people who designed your original site. However if you’re committed to a blog, then this is a great way to go.
#3: Create An External Blog
If you want to test the benefits of having a blog. Or, want to do it completely for free, you can add a link to your site that takes you to an external blog.
This is the most time effective and it’s not all that uncommon. In fact it’s something Marketing Guru, Seth Godin, uses on his own site.
You can set this blog up through applications like:
And then just link it through a page on your site, like Seth has right here:
The downside to this is that not all the traffic stays on your site. It get redirected to this independently hosted blog. Which might lower your overall conversions.
Whichever way you decide to set up a blog is down to you. All of them come with their own pros and cons.
The main focus is that you end up with a blog on your site so that you’re ready to start reaping the benefits.
The Most Important Step In All Of Blogging History (Ever)
By this point in the article you’ve learned:
- What a blog is
- Why you need one
- The benefits of having a blog
- How to put one on your site
Which just about does us for this article. In the next article, you’re going to learn about finding your audience, writing content and how to make the best damn blog in your niche.
But first, you have an important step to take. And it really is important.
You need to decide what your blog is going to do for you and your business. What is the goal it’s going to help you achieve:
- Is it being found through Google more often?
- Is it creating trust and relationships with your customers?
- Is it converting more people to your products?
- Is it establishing yourself as an authority?
Whichever one of those – or something different – it is, I want you to decide before you move onto the next article.
This decision will shape your blog, how you create content and what purpose it serves.
Need help deciding? Ask in the comments and I’ll help you choose.
If not, I’ll see you in Part Two…