The 5 Ws of Blogging for Business
Ok, some of you already have a little bit of an attitude about this article. You hear about blogging all the time but roll your eyes and insist that you won’t or can’t do it. Maybe you think a blog is something for “creative people” or for “people with nothing else to do but write.” Maybe you have already decided that you have no time in your day to blog. Maybe you think you can’t write or maybe you aren’t open to trying something new.
Put all those maybes aside for a minute and discover the who, what, when, where and why of blogging for business. Maybe you’ll understand that blogging can help bring new business and encourage interaction with current customers. Let’s start with the most important - the why:
WHY SHOULD YOU BLOG?
Easy - there are several reasons:
- More traffic. Organizations that have a blog get more website traffic. The more content you put out there, the more likely you are to attract an interested reader.
- Increase SEO (search engine optimization). Every blog post means one more web page for search engines to index. Each of these pages can target a specific keyword or phrase and can help bring in possible customers searching for that term. Also, search engines like for your website content to be regularly updated with fresh, helpful content.
- Be the Expert. By giving valuable information that helps customers and potential customers do business, you demonstrate that you know what you are talking about. Write blog posts about the business problems that keep your customers up at night. Help them solve their problems and show that you care.
- Encourage More Interaction. Allow comments on your blog posts. This gives customers the opportunity to further discussion and ask questions. And don’t be surprised when your blog article comes up at a meeting or luncheon, giving you another opportunity to talk to your customer.
WHO SHOULD BLOG?
You, you and yes, you too. If you are reading this and you are not blogging for your business, you should be. See the whys above. Worried about writing? Don’t be. Remember that blogging is just talking to your clients. It can be casual and fun. You should still use basic grammar skills, but this is not writing a proper British novel. Take your business personality, whatever it may be, and use it on the web. Your customers will appreciate the help and the interaction.
WHAT SHOULD YOU BLOG?
Anything that your audience might want to read. This is about helping your customers. Think of the questions you get asked over and over. Check with customer service or your receptionist to see how they are helping customers. Pick out a few of those questions and write out their answers. Also think about how your business excels. How are you an expert in your field? Give tips and resources around that subject to help your customer and define you as a thought leader.
WHEN SHOULD YOU BLOG?
In this case, more is better. For every blog post you write, you are giving customers valuable information and search engines more ways to find you. If you are limited on time, you should still start somewhere. Make it a goal to blog at least once a week. It doesn’t have to be long; even just 350 words can make a good post if you are giving your customers valuable information. The important thing is to post regularly and consistently; you can decide the frequency.
WHERE SHOULD YOU BLOG?
Your website should be the hub of all you do on the web. You should use email marketing and social platforms like Facebook and Twitter, but they should be used to distribute the information that is on your website. Also if you have a blog that is separate from your website, you should combine the two as soon as you can. You want to direct your customers (and search engine traffic) to one central location.
Still have a bad attitude about blogging?
If you still have a little bit of a bad attitude about blogging, don’t think of it as a blog. Call it news or frequently asked questions or helpful hints. Just put something out there and realize that releasing regular content to your customers (also known as blogging) is a valuable business tool.
So what’s next?
Start writing. The easiest way to start is to answer the number one question you get from customers. Then move on to other questions. As you get used to blogging, maybe you’ll start giving your opinion on industry topics. Or maybe you’ll write about something completely unrelated to business but is entertaining to your customer base. It really is easier than it sounds, but you have to get started.
If you don’t have a blog on your website, Keystone can help you get this important tool set up and ready to use.
No more maybes. It’s time for your business to blog.