Blogging for Business Success  Curated by Lauren Edwards   Corporate Writing Coach       May 15, 2012
Lauren EdwardsJournalist for 10 yearsTech PR writing coach for 10 years
http://twitter.com/LaurenEdwardsSVhttp://www.facebook.com/Lauren.Edwardshttp://www.linkedin.com/in/LaurenEdwardsSVhttp://L...
Chamber members are asking …• What are business  blogs?• What value does  blogging provide to  small business?• What kind ...
Online “diary” for sharing:– Helpful advice– Opinions– Anecdotes– Knowledge– Links– News– Announcements… related to your b...
Free blog hosts                  •   Wordpress                  •   Blogger                  •   Tumbler                  ...
Reach Local, April 2012, blog.reachlocal.comhttp://blog.reachlocal.com/415197/2012/04/06/content-marketing-why-telling-you...
Why blog?Intangible value is priceless:  Reputation, relationshipsTangible value:Website SEO (Search Engine Optimization) ...
Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%...
Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%...
Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%...
Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%...
Why blog?Intangible value is priceless:  Reputation, relationshipsTangible value:Website SEO (Search Engine Optimization) ...
Frequency + QualityAt least once a week•   Once a week•   Twice a week•   Daily•   Three times a dayMonthly, not so great
blog.hubspot.com/blog, April 2008http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/4061/13-Ways-to-Use-Your-Blog-to-Improve-Onli...
www.hubspot.com gives loads of great advice for free
Guy says:1. Be likeable2. Be trustworthy3. Have a great cause
Chip & Dan say:1.   Simplicity2.   Unexpectedness3.   Concreteness4.   Credibility5.   Emotions6.   Stories
Lauren’s how-to workshops:1.  Right voice for blog2.  Repurposing content3.  Contributed articles4.  Media pitches5.  Case...
Good basic templatelifehacker.com DIY Magnetic Whiteboard Speech Bubble Reader Chris Burke painted a useful and good-looki...
Not like thisAs business professionals increasingly search for ways to make theircommunications stand out, Home Depot, the...
First & Second Person•   “I figured why not …”•   “From where I sit, …”•   “If you need a …”•   “You could run with ...”• ...
Imperative mood (commands)• “Show me a way to …”• “Eat a lettuce-filled sandwich.”• “Don’t forget that…”
Neutrality is tepidOffer opinions and invitations,not just information                                  Beauty of “because...
Posted by bartmusings at 11:36 AM 1 commentsMONDAY, JANUARY 11, 2010Pants Liberation Front - No Pants 2010 Project?I guess...
Posted by bartmusings at 10:50 AM 2 commentsTUESDAY, JANUARY 05, 2010iBART LIVE iPhone app: Expensive but coolIf youre wil...
When choosing tone, look for …1.    Word count, syllable count, sentence length2.    Sentence fragments?3.    Anglo-Saxon ...
Rules not to break
Give greater emphasis than before to …Visuals (videos,slide shows, info-graphicsand photos, photos,photos)Personal experie...
Custom bike shopwww.spectrum-cycles.com/blog
Personal trainerwww.fitwithbrit.com/blog
Stationery & invitation designwww.momincdaily.com
Supermarket chainwww.wegmans.com/blog
Niche advice, sells his bookthefranchiseking.com/blog
Or, just a place to store niche FAQslaurenedwardssv.blogspot.com
Award-winning blogs2012.bloggi.es
New habits you’ll need• Use natural language keywords that customers  use so online searchers will find your posts• Listen...
Try to listen more than you talk              Comment                        Consume     Create
Hubspot advice on joining in
Hubspot advice on blog promotion
GDS International
How a blog boosts business•   Adds new ways to be found•   Attracts new audiences•   Optimizes website•   Builds brand•   ...
Measure successCount whatyou can:• Comments• Page views• Conversion
Plan, set goals•      Who matters?•      Where are       they?•      What do you       want them to       do (not know)?Be...
More resources•   How to plan & strategize (socialmediatoday)•   13 ways to improve lead generation (hubspot)•   10 tips f...
Blogging for Small Businesses
Blogging for Small Businesses
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Blogging for Small Businesses

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Find out how blogging can help your small business attract new customers, add new ways to be found online and spur customers to action.

Get tips for achieving the right tone and finding the right content. See examples of small business blogs and award-winning blogs. Live links throughout the presentation let you directly explore more examples and advice.

I curated this presentation at the request of the Eden Area / Castro Valley Chamber of Commerce. These slides are visual aids for a lecture, not a stand-alone presentation like my others here. But you'll still find *plenty* of great resources, examples and advice, so please have a look!

Most of my writing and editing workshops are hands-on, with emphasis on breaking habits for greater efficiency and great results. My clients have included Intel, Yahoo and Google, as well as technology PR agencies through the San Francisco Bay Area, the nation and overseas in Asia and Australia.

Please contact me directly to inquire about workshops for your PR agency or technology company.

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Blogging for Small Businesses

  1. 1. Blogging for Business Success Curated by Lauren Edwards Corporate Writing Coach May 15, 2012
  2. 2. Lauren EdwardsJournalist for 10 yearsTech PR writing coach for 10 years
  3. 3. http://twitter.com/LaurenEdwardsSVhttp://www.facebook.com/Lauren.Edwardshttp://www.linkedin.com/in/LaurenEdwardsSVhttp://LaurenEdwardsSV.blogspot.com/ SV stands for Silicon Valley
  4. 4. Chamber members are asking …• What are business blogs?• What value does blogging provide to small business?• What kind of content is important?• How can a blog boost business?
  5. 5. Online “diary” for sharing:– Helpful advice– Opinions– Anecdotes– Knowledge– Links– News– Announcements… related to your business & industry
  6. 6. Free blog hosts • Wordpress • Blogger • Tumbler • Posterous • Xanga • Twitter • Weebly www.makeuseof.com Jan. 24, 2011
  7. 7. Reach Local, April 2012, blog.reachlocal.comhttp://blog.reachlocal.com/415197/2012/04/06/content-marketing-why-telling-your-story-is-important-for-your-small-business.html
  8. 8. Why blog?Intangible value is priceless: Reputation, relationshipsTangible value:Website SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Frequency + Quality = Traffic
  9. 9. Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%20deck.pdf
  10. 10. Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%20deck.pdf
  11. 11. Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%20deck.pdf
  12. 12. Trust Barometer, www.edelman.com/trust/2011http://www.edelman.com/trust/2011/uploads/edelman%20trust%20barometer%20global%20deck.pdf
  13. 13. Why blog?Intangible value is priceless: Reputation, relationshipsTangible value:Website SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Frequency + Quality = Traffic
  14. 14. Frequency + QualityAt least once a week• Once a week• Twice a week• Daily• Three times a dayMonthly, not so great
  15. 15. blog.hubspot.com/blog, April 2008http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/4061/13-Ways-to-Use-Your-Blog-to-Improve-Online-Lead-Generation.aspx#ixzz1uhP6slet
  16. 16. www.hubspot.com gives loads of great advice for free
  17. 17. Guy says:1. Be likeable2. Be trustworthy3. Have a great cause
  18. 18. Chip & Dan say:1. Simplicity2. Unexpectedness3. Concreteness4. Credibility5. Emotions6. Stories
  19. 19. Lauren’s how-to workshops:1. Right voice for blog2. Repurposing content3. Contributed articles4. Media pitches5. Case studies6. News value7. Business context8. Self-editing9. Editing others10. AP style for PR11. Top grammar mistakes by business professionals12. … and more …
  20. 20. Good basic templatelifehacker.com DIY Magnetic Whiteboard Speech Bubble Reader Chris Burke painted a useful and good-looking magnetic whiteboard in his office—cleverly, in the shape of a speech bubble. Burke explains: I needed a new whiteboard so I found some paint at Home Depot that allows you to paint a whiteboard anywhere youd like. I figured why not put a layer of magnetic paint underneath it. The only thing left to do is paint my face underneath the arrow. He says he put five coats of the paint to get it smooth and working. Now, that is a nifty whiteboard. Show us what youve done with whiteboard, magnetic, or chalkboard paint in the Lifehacker Workspace Show and Tell Group, and we might feature your handiwork here. Nice job, Chris! [126 words including hedder and links]
  21. 21. Not like thisAs business professionals increasingly search for ways to make theircommunications stand out, Home Depot, the leading provider of homeimprovement solutions, provides the industry’s first dry, concentrated,magnetic additive that can be mixed with high-quality primer/sealer,stain-blocker paint. The additive will enable users to utilize oil-based orlatex paint to enhance their magnetic painting experience, at home orthe office.“With Home Depot’s top-of-the-line magnetic paint, I was able tocreate an effective whiteboard solution to enhance my workenvironment,” said customer Chris Burke. “I’m delighted to find amagnetic paint that meets all of my requirements, including the abilityto design a whiteboard in the shape of a speech bubble.”
  22. 22. First & Second Person• “I figured why not …”• “From where I sit, …”• “If you need a …”• “You could run with ...”• “We’ve listed some practical ways …”
  23. 23. Imperative mood (commands)• “Show me a way to …”• “Eat a lettuce-filled sandwich.”• “Don’t forget that…”
  24. 24. Neutrality is tepidOffer opinions and invitations,not just information Beauty of “because”• “It’s so awesome that I had to share it.” Say *why* you are writing.• “And that, of course, is why …” I thought you’d like this• “What I like about it is …” *because* ….• “The only thing regretful about …”• “Can you believe …!”• “Can anyone tell me …?”
  25. 25. Posted by bartmusings at 11:36 AM 1 commentsMONDAY, JANUARY 11, 2010Pants Liberation Front - No Pants 2010 Project?I guess if theres any place to do it, its in the Bay Area. Those in support ofImprov Everywhere, a NYC based performing arts group, paraded free ofpants while riding BART yesterday. Call me whatever you wish but I find stuntslike this extremely inappropriate. If they want to show their support in publicby not wearing pants, do it in a plaza, like at Embarcadero or Union Squarewhere people have the choice to walk another direction, but not on the trainswhere space is already a premium, where there are little ones around, andfellow passengers are forced to be within inches of you.Carolyn Jones of Chronicle reports: "Some wore frayed cotton boxers, othersopted for pink satin thongs, and a few forewent underwear entirely."Its ridiculous. Thank goodness it didnt happen today.138 words
  26. 26. Posted by bartmusings at 10:50 AM 2 commentsTUESDAY, JANUARY 05, 2010iBART LIVE iPhone app: Expensive but coolIf youre willing to fork out $4 for up to the second tracking of trainarrivals, iBART LIVE is worth the investment. Ive had iBART (the free version)for quite some time and found it very helpful, however, to find out aboutdelays, I needed to open up the "advisories" notification and read aboutthem.Well, with iBART LIVE, you will have the same info as the scrolling ticker thatwe see on the platform right on your iPhone. Very convenient for someonelike me who does not have the patience to wait around on the platform fordelayed trains...I do wait, but youll read about it for sure here or on Twitter!Why $4 though?? Thats a bit much for an iPhone app in my opinion. Cansomeone explain?130 words
  27. 27. When choosing tone, look for …1. Word count, syllable count, sentence length2. Sentence fragments?3. Anglo-Saxon versus Latinate (start v initiate, next v adjacent)4. Connotative versus neutral (thirst for/interest in, mutter/say)5. Reader-centric content v. company-centric content6. Reader-centric point of view v. company-centric point of view7. First & second person (I, you), not third person (he/she/it/they)8. Opinion, personal experience9. Imperative mood (giving commands: show me, try this)10. Inviting versus informative
  28. 28. Rules not to break
  29. 29. Give greater emphasis than before to …Visuals (videos,slide shows, info-graphicsand photos, photos,photos)Personal experience,opinions, demos
  30. 30. Custom bike shopwww.spectrum-cycles.com/blog
  31. 31. Personal trainerwww.fitwithbrit.com/blog
  32. 32. Stationery & invitation designwww.momincdaily.com
  33. 33. Supermarket chainwww.wegmans.com/blog
  34. 34. Niche advice, sells his bookthefranchiseking.com/blog
  35. 35. Or, just a place to store niche FAQslaurenedwardssv.blogspot.com
  36. 36. Award-winning blogs2012.bloggi.es
  37. 37. New habits you’ll need• Use natural language keywords that customers use so online searchers will find your posts• Listen for customers’ pain, find out where customers are talking about this now• Write about comments in a step-back piece• Think about how to encourage inbound links• Actively go find visuals, links and resources• Provoke dialog
  38. 38. Try to listen more than you talk Comment Consume Create
  39. 39. Hubspot advice on joining in
  40. 40. Hubspot advice on blog promotion
  41. 41. GDS International
  42. 42. How a blog boosts business• Adds new ways to be found• Attracts new audiences• Optimizes website• Builds brand• Helps customers know you• Teaches you more about customers• Creates customer service channel• Spurs customers to actionSource: www.socialmediadirectbiz.com
  43. 43. Measure successCount whatyou can:• Comments• Page views• Conversion
  44. 44. Plan, set goals• Who matters?• Where are they?• What do you want them to do (not know)?Be patientAt right:http://www.business2community.com/social-media/social-media-goals-discovering-the-possibilities-0136636
  45. 45. More resources• How to plan & strategize (socialmediatoday)• 13 ways to improve lead generation (hubspot)• 10 tips for a profitable blog (flyte)• 5 metrics to measure success (fixcourse)• 6 recommendations for measuring (kaushik.net)• 9 tips for business blog ideas (problogger.net)• 11 ways to find customers (smallcompanybigimage)• Why telling your story is important to your small business (ReachLocal)

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