The Truth About Blogging for Business

Posted on January 27, 2015. Filed under: Blog, Business, Marketing, Small Business, Uncategorized | Tags: , , |

The-Truth-About-BloggingThere are many advantages to starting a business blog.  In fact, I talked about one of the major benefits of a business blog in my blog post, How to Use Blogging to Build the Know, Like, and Trust Factor  for Your Business,  but what most people don’t necessarily talk about is the “truth” about blogging.  So in this blog post I will uncover some of the truths about blogging for your business:

  1. Blogging for business has become very popular in the last five years or so, which has created a crowded blogging world and with so many things grabbing people’s attention, it takes time to get results from your business blog (it can even take years),  so if you think blogging for your business will bring you a ton of clients quickly, think again.
  2. Creating content for your blog takes time.  You have to think about the content you want to post, then you have to create the content, and then you have to promote the content, this can take a lot of your time and effort.  For example, on average it can take up to two hours to create the blog post, it may take an additional 10-20 minutes to promote the posts on your various social networks, so one blog post can take almost three hours, so depending on how many blog posts you produce per month, this can be very time consuming
  3. A large percentage of business owners, coaches and consultants manage all aspects of their blog themselves.  According to coSchedule, 58% of business bloggers are solo bloggers.  That means they are the content manager, the copywriter, the graphic designer, the promoter, and everything else for the blog, which can become overwhelming because of the different elements of running a business blog as well as keeping up with running a business!
  4. Many blog posts go largely unnoticed.  You put all the time and effort into creating content for your blog, and then nobody reads it.  That is why promoting your blog post is an important part of blogging for your business.  You can promote your blog posts to your email list, on social media, etc.
  5. A large percentage of business blogs die after a few months because many business owners, coaches and consultants can’t find the time to keep up with the blog.  In fact, according to a recent survey by coschedule, 22% of respondents said their biggest challenge when it comes to blogging is finding time, which makes it easy to see why so many business blogs end up in the blog grave yard.
  6. Most people will not comment on your blog.  One of the great things about blogs is the ability to create conversations, because people are able to comment on your blog posts, but the statistics show that the majority of people who may read your blog, will not comment on your blog post, which can make it hard to gauge if you are engaging your audience.

So, if you decide to start a business blog, keep these truths in mind and check out my blog post The 5 C’s of a Successful Business Blog.

Do you have a business blog?  Are you thinking about starting a business blog this year?

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How to Grow Your Business with Relationship Marketing

Posted on September 10, 2014. Filed under: Blog, Business, Business Development, Business Events, Email Marketing, Event Marketing, Marketing, Social Media | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Blog Image- September 2014
Dictionary.com defines a relationship as a connection, association, or involvement.  It also defines marketing as the total of activities involved in the transfer of goods from the producer or seller to the consumer or buyer.  

My definition of Relationship Marketing is the activities involved in building a greater connection with your clients, prospects and partners.  This strong connection often leads to the sale of products or services, and also increases loyalty to your brand or company.

With that said, Relationship Marketing is a key part of your overall marketing strategy, and should occur both online and offline.

In this blog post I will mention a few activities that you should include in your Relationship Marketing:

ONLINE

In order to build a connection online with your clients, prospects, and partners, it is important to have an online presence.  Included in your online presence should be the following activities:

  • A Company Blog–  In addition to having a company website, a company blog can help to build the relationship that you have with your audience, because a blog allows you to show your expertise, knowledge and personality in ways that a website alone does not accomplish.  The key to a successful business blog is:
    1. It should be updated frequently
    2. It should contain valuable content relevant to your audience
    3. It should showcase the personality of your brand
  • A Social Media Presence–  It’s not necessary to be on all the popular social networks out there, but it is beneficially for your company to be on social networks that have a high percentage of your target market, and networks that will showcase your business well.  Social Networks are a great way to strength your connection with your clients, prospects, and partners because it allows you to create a conversation around your company, industry, products, services, values, beliefs, etc.  The key to a successful social media presence is:
    1. Know your audience
    2. Post content that is interesting to your audience
    3. Create conversations
  • An E-Newsletter or EZine–  An email publication that your company produces is a great way to strengthen the connection that you have with customers, prospects and partners.  It is a great way for your audience to get to know you and get to know what your company stands for.  The key to a successful E-Newletter is:
    1. Know your audience
    2. Give valuable information in each ezine
    3. Provide 80% valuable content and only 20% company promotions

OFFLINE

  • Events–  Plan events to show appreciation for your customers and partners.  Taking the time to host these events can build a strong connection with you and your customers and partners.  It also helps to solidify their loyalty to your company.  You can also have events to introduce your prospects to your business or your brand.  Grand Openings, Launch Parties, etc. are all great ways for people to get to know more about you, your company, and your brand.
  • One-on-One Meetings–  When possible, schedule one-on-one meetings with your clients, prospects and partners.  This is a great way to build a strong connection, and for people to get to know, like and trust you.
  • Send Cards–  It is important to send your customers, prospects and partners cards on various occasions.  This could include birthdays, anniversary, Thank You for Your Business, Thank You for Your Time, Happy Holiday cards and more.   Taking the time out to send your customers, prospects and partners cards really helps to create loyalty and build trust.

These are just a few ways you can use Relationship Marketing to GROW your business.  What other ways can you think of in which you can use Relationship Marketing to grow your business?

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Do you need a Business Blog and a Business Website?

Posted on June 23, 2014. Filed under: Blog, Business, Business Development, Educating, Marketing | Tags: , , , |

Blog v. WebsiteIt may seem like a silly question, but what is the difference between having a blog and having a website?  And when it comes to your business strategy, do you need both?

With the popularity of blogs and social media, some companies are thinking they may not need a website.  Although a business can be successful without one, I feel it is important to have one.  Your website is your home base, the place on the internet where your company/brand lives.  All other places on the internet like blog platforms, or social networks are places that you rent space, so if you are serious about your business you don’t want to just RENT, you want to OWN!

According to dictionary.com, “A website is a connected group of pages on the World Wide Web regarded as a single entity, usually maintained by one person or organization and devoted to a single topic or several closely related topics.”  Your website really is the place where people will go to learn about your company.  Since people go there to learn about your company, your website should include the following:

  • The story of your business, including the who, what, where, when & how
  • A showcase of your products and/or services
  • Appropriate messaging directed to your target audience
  • A way to capture leads by offering an email opt-in form
  • A way to convert your visitors to purchases with the use of links to sales pages 
  • A way for people to contact you
  • Connections to your social media networks
  • Connection to your blog

So what is a blog and how does it differ from your website?

According to dictionary.com, “A blog is  a website containing a writer’s or group of writers’ own experiences, observations, opinions, etc., and often having images and links to other websites.” Your blog is where you express your opinions and share your insights about your particular topic with your audience.  Your blog should be used for the following:

  • To show your expertise
  • To offer advice, tips, techniques related to your products and services, or your industry
  • To build an audience
  • To subtly promote your products and/or services
  • To build a community
  • To spread the word about your business
  • To capture leads when people subscribe to your blog
  • To convert visitors to purchase your product or service by using links to sales pages

So now that you know the difference between your website and your blog, do you need both?  It depends!  If you want to be known as an expert in your industry and you are committed to consistently blogging (posting articles) on your blog, then blogging should be included in your online marketing strategy, but if you are not sure you will have the time to consistently blog and be committed to maintaining your blog, then you should not start a blog.  Although it has many benefits, blogging is not for everyone!

On the other hand, having a home base for your business/brand is important, so I feel having a website is a MUST for a business while having a blog is OPTIONAL.

So what do you think, does a business need a blog and a website?  Do you have a business blog and a business website?

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