Blogs have become an indispensable and highly effective marketing tool. However, as a business owner, you might not necessarily be a blogger. In this article, we’ll talk about why you should most definitely be one. 🙌
In a Harvard Business Review article on the power of blogging, Dorie Clark writes: “blogging’s ability to impact mainstream discourse has never been greater”. Clark draws on her own experience as a reporter and recounts how in earlier times, you knew when an article bummed, because it was published on the web rather than in print. Times have changed and the opposite is now the case. If you want to make an impact, you better put it out in the web, with its ever-expanding reach and seemingly all-encompassing capacity. 🤯🤯🤯
There are a lot of ways to distribute content, soooo . . .
Why is blogging specifically important? 🤷♀️
In times of content marketing, we value expertise over advertisement. Instead of blandly promoting your brand, it is much more effective to answer questions at hand, inform your audience, and thus attract potential clients. This can be achieved most elegantly and effectively in the form of blog posts.
By the way, if you’re new to all things content marketing, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Check out a previous feature of mine on 4 ways to find content marketing ideas for initial inspiration. 🙇♀️
In that line, a blog is great, because sharing your expertise in writing is one thing, but the format of a blog also allows you to play around with other forms of content creation like graphics and video. Video marketing has become one of the most effective tools for content marketing, because it’s a quick, fun, and aesthetically pleasing way to inform people. If you’re not yet convinced, check out this article on the future of marketing through video here to explore further reasons.
How to start a blog 📝
Who are we kidding, a blog is no walk in the park -- from conceptualisation to actualisation it will cost you many a painful hour of coming up with ideas, revisiting them, throwing them to the curb or setting them in stone. To ease the pain, Learn About Us have come up with a guide to painless and easy tips to start a blog, which will be a good starting point for you. Give it a read here! If you’re more technical, Forbes also has a Council Post feature on 8 tips for starters, which you can find here. 👈
My personal stance: Trust your gut. You know your brand, as long as you keep it in line, you’ll be fine. Make it personal, make it accessible, but most importantly, make it enjoyable -- both for your audience and you. While it helps you build connections, it is also a wonderful chance to learn some new skills yourself!
The fear of SEO 👻
Starting a blog is the beginning of an ongoing endeavour and simply setting it up is not how it works. Let’s talk about maintaining a blog. The reason blogging is so effective, because like any online content, it increases your visibility and broadens your reach. You can play an active part in this by promoting your blog, following the tips from this Forbes feature here, such as social media promotion, blogging constantly and consistently, exploring niche topics, and connecting with other bloggers and writing guest posts. 🤝
One of the most frightening parts of keeping a blog or a website alive is SEO. Search Engine Optimisation sounds as convoluted as it can get, but there is no way around it. But, dial down the anxiety. With some easy guidelines, you'll be fine. In the same vein as before, it’s all about consistency -- if your brand is consistent, finding the right keywords to reflect it will be easier. For some basic tips, visit Evie’s post on tips to optimise SEO for your blog here. 👈
If you’re looking for more detailed information, it might also be worthwhile to check out the section on SEO in this guide on 45 mistakes to avoid when starting a blog.
And speaking of mistakes, let’s talk business about some things to watch out for . . .
Pitfalls and Traps 👀
Click here to see a list of 17 blogging mistakes and how to solve them. This will give you some clear sight in the confusing mist and thin lines of blogging.
For instance, I advised you earlier to trust your gut and write from your personal story and brand. We’ll have to edit this a bit. One of the pitfalls here can be that you lose the focus of your actual topic and the information you want to transmit because you’re getting caught up in your story. Of course, we’re all human and love to talk about ourselves and what we’re passionate about, but it’s all about dosage. In the article Lindsay Kolowich Cox writes: “Infuse your personality without eclipsing the topic” and I will stick by this. It’s all about the balance and trust me when I say, you will work this out over time. As with any marketing strategy, it’s often trial and error. Trying out how much personality you can put into an informative piece, and how much information into a personal piece will become easier over time.
And before you know it, you have slipped into a routine of blogging! 👩💻✨
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About the Author
Sarah is a PR assistant at GuidedPR. She holds a BA hons in English and Comparative Literature and has just moved to London to start her MA in Modern Literature and Culture at King's College London. She's usually busy writing and consuming caffeine. ☕☕☕
Find her on Linkedin here.