Blogging is indeed just a tool, a mere dot… on a longer continuum. But it is a revolutionary tool, and those who just keep hacking along in the undergrowth will remain blind to the big picture until it is too late.” – Robert Scoble
The blog has finally hit prime time; it’s now the engine for announcing news, providing information, expanding marketing and increasing sales for many individuals, businesses and even large corporations through their website. For most people, their blog is their public face on the web because it’s easy for anyone to publish content and because of the smooth flow of information in and out of the website. A blog is simply a great, web-based marketing and communication tool.
If you’re not blogging, below are ten reasons why you should consider getting started:
1. Blogs are great for improving your search engine rankings
Blogs are becoming an absolute necessity when you’re talking about ranking well in the SERPS (Search engine results pages). Search engines love keyword-rich content and search engines love websites with frequently updated, highly useful content. A blog allows even the most novice web users to meet these two important goals and create keyword-rich content on a regular basis with little or no ongoing investment.
2. People can easily subscribe and unsubscribe to your blog
I’ve always said that if you spend time and money trying to get someone to your site, then you need to have a vehicle to get some information from them and stay in touch. A newsletter subscription is a great way to do this and stay top-of-mind but a blog allows you to easily provide an RSS feed of your blog where people can easily subscribe and monitor the posts to your blog.
3. Many people who subscribe also have blogs of their own and potentially thousands of subscribers.
When someone subscribes, they too may be a blogger or an influential person in your business community. If this person likes what they see, they’ll help to spread the word about your blog, business, products or services by posting on their blog or linking out to you from within relevant content; a great way to increase your traffic and links for SEO.
4. Blogs are an informal, yet effective way to talk about your company or service and stay top of mind.
Blogs are usually informal forums to talk about a subject, give advice, and talk about your products or services. Posts are typically short, 500-1000 word entries about a specific subject which allows you to create content that’s keyword rich and very useful. Since the format of blogs is informal, it allows you to present another face to your business that you might not have via a brochure, press release or other “official” company marketing.
5. Blogs are easy to use; so why not?
Blogging software like WordPress and Typepad are extremely easy to use, and, in the case of WordPress it’s free. This fact alone has helped to turn blogging into the force it is today. Once the software is installed on a server (we can help you with setting up a blog), anyone can choose to make a post, create links, upload pictures and embed YouTube videos and publish their prose for the world to read.
6. Blogs allow the immediate exchange of information
The ease of posting and the ease of allowing blog comments to your posts are a great way for you to receive feedback and provide a way to stay transparent with your business. You can instantly post to your blog and your readers and customers can provide immediate feedback that can be visible to everyone else reading the blog once you approve them.
7. A frequently updated blog will label you as a topical expert in your field
A wise man once said “You don’t write because you want to say something, you write because you’ve got something to say.” A blog allows you to write and post to your blog on a frequent basis on any number of specific niche topics. If you do a great job and you have something important and useful to say on a regular basis (and you stick with it) you could become a respected topical expert in your field or web niche
8. A blog can be a great tool for educating and selling
In addition to positioning yourself as a legitimate topical expert in your field, you can also use a blog to educate your potential clients and customers. Through education you can sell and legitimize your products, services and ideas.
9. A blog is a great way to network and to get feedback.
A blog is your online bedrock that all other online marketing and networking can be built around. If you use Twitter or Facebook, send marketing information via email, participate in forums or blog comments or simply use traditional offline marketing methods like networking meatups or speaking engagements, a blog can be your key to referring people to your site and to keep them coming back. Plus, you get the added benefit of getting their feedback which can be highly valuable. You’ll get honest feedback that normally would not get anywhere else.
10. A blog can make you money
After all, this is the purpose of all this right? We’re in this to make money and provide for our families by ultimately making sales of our company products or services. A blog can be a great way to make money; either directly via your blog or through advertising. Once you have a successful blog you can utilize affiliate programs, advertising and sales of e-books for a revenue source. A blog can also be a very effective sales vehicle for your company products or services. Once you’ve established yourself and you’re ranking well for content within your niche, it only makes sense that clients seeking what you sell will find you and want to engage your services or buy your products.
Go get started!
In the end, continually maintaining a blog will help you in many more ways than I can describe here. At the minimum you’ll learn how to communicate better, you’ll have fresh valuable content on your website, and you’ll be helping to improve the internet as a whole by weighing in with your valuable opinion and advice within your niche.