The blogging movement is picking up speed as businesses begin to realize the benefits of blogging. Discover what a business blog can do for you.
What is a Blog? Blogger, which is owned by Google gives you a simple, easy to use blog that you can have up and running in almost no time at all. A blog is a personal diary. A daily pulpit. A collaboration space. A political soapbox. A breaking-news outlet. A collection of links. Your own private thoughts. Memos to the world. Your blog is whatever you want it to be. There are millions of them, in all shapes and sizes, and there are no set rules. In simple terms, a blog is a web site, where you write stuff on an ongoing basis. New stuff shows up at the top, so your visitors can read what’s new. Then they comment on it or link to it or email you.
You cannot afford to close your eyes to them, because they’re simply the most explosive outbreak in the information world since the Internet itself. And they’re going to shake up just about every business – including yours. Blogs are a phenomenon that you cannot ignore, postpone, or delegate. Given the changes barrelling down upon us, blogs are not a business elective. They’re are prerequisite. Your customers and rivals are figuring blogs out. My advice: Catch up...or catch you later. The Importance of Blogs
About Blogger Since blogger was launched in 1999, blogs have reshaped the web, impacted politics, shaken up journalism, and enabled millions of people to have a voice and connect with others.
It’s quick, it’s easy and it’s a great marketing tool for a business.
Blogging has grown in the last few years, with more and more people doing it everyday.
There are some 9 million blogs out there, with 40,000 new ones popping up each day.
Millions of online journals that link together in a vast network.
Currently available in 41 languages.
Is blogging here to stay? 92% of respondents, in a blogging and SEO survey, feel blogging will continue to be an important content optimization and marketing tactic for the next 3+ years.
Blogs can fall into two general categories: Personal Blogs Business Blogs A mixture of a personal diary, opinion posts and research links. A corporate tool for communicating with customers or employees to share knowledge and expertise.
Business Blogs Business blogging can be used to keep customers and visitors up to date on what’s going on in a business, what’s coming up, general chit-chat that doesn’t fit anywhere else on the company site but might be interesting. It also brings a personal feel to the site when it’s done right. It’s an informal contact that can be used to communicate and to sell at the same time. It doesn’t always have to be the guy in IT who does the blog just because it’s a technical thing. Anyone can write, it’s the person who knows what they are talking about on that particular subject that makes the blog work.
They give your business a very personal face and help you build relationships with your clients and customers.
It helps you build trust and customer relation.
It is a fantastic system to publicize company programs, product, events and more.
Search engines love blogs more than they love websites due to the dynamic contact, social networking compatibilities, and traffic due to links from other sites.
Provides you with customer feedback and sometimes employee feedback.
Adding a blog to your business can cause a huge change in the way customers are obtained and retained and how your products and services are delivered and viewed. A successful blog has the potential to get you noticed in your business market, especially if your business is in a niche market. Why your Business needs a Blog
Business blogs provide your small business with a chance to share your expertise and knowledge with a larger audience.
Increase overall online exposure.
Increase company site traffic.
Increase company leads/sales.
Improved prominence in search engine results.
Provides information to existing customers.
Attracts new customers through online searches.
Get more promotion, more pageviews, and more customers.
Increase visibility and demonstrates the company is “up to date”
TopRank Survey Results: 94% reported seeing measurable benefits from blogging within 12 months 54% of respondents start to see benefits from blogging within 3 months
Examples of Business Blogs Joel on Software Wall Flower Studio A blog that displays Joel Spolsky’s knowledge and views on software development. The blog acts as a method for Joel to highlight his expertise and promote his small business, Fog Creek Software. http://www.joelonsoftware.com/ndex.html Located in Haliburton Highlands http://wallflowerstudioseeds.blogspot.com/
Focus on the Reader Any kind of blog that focuses on telling people how wonderful you and your company are is doomed to fail. Business blogging is not about blatantly self-promotional posts. Your focus should be building your authority and credibility with compelling content that provides true value. Over the long term, this strategy will easily convert a good percentage of readers into paying customers. Is it ever okay to do a bit of “selling” in a blog post? Absolutely, but your best bet is to do it in a way that doesn’t come across as selling. What other people say about you is more important that what you say about yourself; therefore, it’s good to try and include testimonials from customers or clients on your blog.
How to Generate Attention
Use effective titles – well written, direct to the point, 95% of your success will depend on the quality of your titles
Consider your readers – provide information that is useful and relevant to their needs and demands
Keep your readers interest – make it engaging and more personal
Carefully choose topics – make it interesting to capture your clients attention
Link back to your website – provide your readers with more information
Give something of value to your reader – teach your viewer something, offer a free download, share something relating that will teach them something new, share something that will make your reader’s life better or easier
Promote employee morale – posting topics and stories that pertain to the accomplishments of employees
Keep up with comments made from visitors and reply to them if necessary – it shows that their comments are valued and they’ll likely return
Build traffic to your blog by leaving valuable comments on other blogs
Enjoy it! – people will know if the blog is enthusiastic or it’s being done as chore, guess which one they will prefer to read
Frequently Asked Questions Promotions Contests What’s New Pages What’s Coming Photo Blog News
Blogger Features Some features that blogger has to offer:
Customize your template
Add photos and videos to your post
Followers Gadget – Your readers can click the “Follow this Blog” link to add your blog to their Blogger Dashboard and Google Reader Account.
Group Blogging – Allow multiple bloggers to contribute to a single blog. You select which team members have administrative authority and those who are just authors.
Control who can view your Blog/Profile
Posting on the Go– You can post to your blog from your mobile phone (email@example.com) or through a secret Mail-to-Blogger email address. Or use the Blogger Post Gadget to edit and publish posts directly from your custom iGoogle homepage.
Post on a Regular Basis Being successful on the internet requires the same commitment and time that you will have to put into your business. Consistent action is the keys to success. Try to set a regular time for postings. Daily, every three days, every week, it doesn’t really matter as long as it is regularly updates – that is the point of a blog. Posts do not have to be long. Sometimes shorter is better. Within a few paragraphs you can tell your blog visitor what you want them to know. You can always ask people to write a guest post or use articles that would be of interest to your readers.
How to create a Blog Creating a blog for your business is the best way to connect with others who are interested in learning more about your specific area of expertise, service or product. It is a place where you can share knowledge with the public. The fastest way to understand blogging is to try it out. You can be part of the phenomenon that’s transforming web and media participatory activity in less than five minutes. Video – How to Create a Blog http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BnploFsS_tY