The Blogosphere is here and it is not going anywhere. It’s not just for people talking about what they're eating for lunch or their next celebrity crush. Blogging is big business for entrepreneurs and business owners. CEO Blog Nation recently launched a blogging community and we regularly blog for entrepreneurs and business owners and there are numerous reasons to blog. Rescue a CEO asked some businesses how they use blogging to help their business.
#1 – Expanding Resource
My blog is an ever expanding resource for all things insurance. To learn how diabetes will affect your life insurance rates … see my blog. Do you use marijuana and want to know how to get approved for life insurance or want to see instant life insurance rates for a 47 year old…. my blog will tell you. Besides providing content for consumers and SEO value, every page of my blog contains an instant life insurance quoter. This provides instant life insurance quotes for my visitors and a lead to follow-up for me. Some people call me with questions and I refer them to a certain article on my blog for more information on a particular subject. Future plans include videos, infographics and additional resources to benefit my readers and help me grow my business.
Thanks to Chris Abrams, Abrams Insurance Solutions
#2 – Answering Main Questions
We use our blog to answer the main questions our target audience has about our industry and products, allowing them to become more familiar with us and with how our products can help them achieve their goals. We also use it as a way to capture organic traffic, as we often create keyword-based articles which we then rank on Google with our SEO campaigns. Finally, it helps us to craft a narrative around our brand by putting out interesting pieces that our customers may find thought provoking, enticing them to get involved by sharing, commenting, or otherwise becoming more connected to our brand.
Thanks to Curt Storring, Liberty Premium Grooming Co.
#3 – Adding Value to Lives
I use my blog as a tool to add value to others lives. I don't write for my interests but rather what would help my target audience do their job better. Helping businesses with their online brand through my blog is a way for me to build authority and trust with my audience. It gives me great content to share on social media that isn't self-promotional, only helpful. If you can add value to your audience's life then they will begin to trust you and you will become a source of great information. Once you've built that trust then you are going to be their first choice to do business with. Not only will you be their first choice but you won't have to join the battle of price wars. It's not about who's the cheapest anymore but who adds the most value.
Thanks to Nick Leffler, Your Brand by Nick Leffler
#4 – Behind the Scenes
I have three reasons for writing a blog. One is to improve credibility with customers and educate them. For this reason, much of my blog is educational. I make and sell skin care products, so many of my blog posts center around ingredients we use, understanding skin physiology and how to care for skin. The second reason is to increase brand awareness so many topics are geared towards our market audience. I post things about the beauty of Colorado and getting outside to hike and live an active lifestyle. Lastly is behind the scenes information that customers love. I write some information about how we make products and the herbs we grow on our farm. I dislike when I visit blogs that are overly salesy, so I don't do that. But together, these topics help to drive traffic to our website where customers can purchase product.
Thanks to Cindy Jones, Ph.D., Colorado Aromatics
#5 – Source of Traffic
Our blog is a main source of traffic and at the core of our content marketing strategy. We have worked really hard to connect with professionals in our target verticals as well as influencers in those same spaces to understand what questions our clients and potential clients have, so we can answer them on our blog. Having great links from our blog to say hey, that's a great question, I wrote a post about that which you can check out here, is very valuable, both to show that I know what I'm talking about and establish myself as a thought leader in my industry. This is also a great passive way of marketing – people read our content, link to it, someone sees it who happens to need the product we provide, and bam, new client. When we use Facebook to share and boost our blog posts, we see a huge return when it comes to new leads coming in. I think content marketing, authenticity, and sharing knowledge is a key part of our overall marketing efforts because I've seen the value it has brought to our business and see the high quality leads it produces.
Thanks to Asaf Darash, Regpack
#6 -Improving SEO
I run a niche public relations and communications agency that helps good companies tell their stories. Our clients range from water protection organizations to bike advocacy non profits to companies all about healthy living. Blogging is key in improving our search engine optimization so the right clients find us online and it is the perfect way to let our clients get to know us. I have won a number of clients from blogs because they were able to see what type of company we are and felt that our company culture that gels with theirs.
Thanks to Jamie Hampton, Mixte Communications
#7 – Being Able to Compete
My main business is in affiliate marketing and it would be unthinkable to have a website without a blog in this industry. The blog serves several purposes: 1) SEO; 2) Traffic; 3) Engagement and 4) It allows us to compete, search engine-wise, with the big players in the same niche. We compete by offering high-quality blog posts that provide information not aggregated elsewhere. I’ve been using this tried-and-true formula of finding a niche in the world of online services and then creating a catchy website which offers real-person reviews, in-depth information and relevant blog posts to successfully form several affiliate marketing businesses over the past decade. Without a blog, the formula would be missing one of its key components.
Thanks to Daren Low, Bitcatcha
#8 – Help Solve Problems
I use my blog to help people solve a problem they're experiencing. Based on the questions they ask via social media, I will create a blog series based on that topic. The series is typically 3-to-4 blog posts and may include a podcast. Through my blog series, I am able to engage my current followers and readers, I provide effective tools, my expertise is highlighted, and my followers enjoy sharing information from the blog series. The additional perk is readers become more curious about my programs which helps me fill my events and coaching roster.
Thanks to Kanesha Baynard, Bold Living Today
#9 – Discuss Relevant Topics
We use our blog for our business to discuss small business and entrepreneurial topics. We also leverage our blog to publish related content of our partners, affiliates and guest writers. We believe that our blog is a great outlet for information for business owners and entrepreneurs who may be looking to incorporate or form an LLC. It's about education and information. Ultimately, when the business owner is ready, they will look to our company as a resource and not just as a ‘sales pitch'. We are focused on customer service and we feel we can start building the relationship and brand awareness through great content on our blog.
Thanks to Deborah Sweeney, MyCorporation
#10 – Engage Local Clients
The Voice of Your Customer is a marketing consulting firm that specializes in penetrating diverse populations. We use our blog, The Voice of Black Cincinnati, to engage with our local clients beyond our social media posts. Most of our content comes from work we are doing for our clients (promotions and community outreach) as well as resources that we need for our business (recruiting and online research). We have an extensive process of creating the most engaging content that includes social media activity, trending topics on social media and the news, and updates from our industry. Our blog has been live for approximately 90 days and we have approximately 45,000 page views. We have also increased impressions for our clients. Our blog is definitely a win-win-win for our clients, our target audience and our business.
Thanks to Crystal L Kendrick, The Voice of Your Customer
#11 – Inspirational Stories
We share inspirational stories and actionable insights from people who have found a way to make money work for them, so other people can do the same. Throughout the blog we recommend relevant, useful financial products that we personally use and endorse. In addition, the blog drives traffic to our financial product comparison and review pages which are compiled with editorial objectivity irrespective of any commissions we might receive to ensure the information is trustworthy to our readers. We also run surveys to better learn about our audience, and plan on expanding into informational products in the near future once we have a deeper understanding of their needs.
Thanks to Han Chang, Investment Zen
#12 – Create Conversation
I love to think of blog posts as a way to create a conversation. For example, whether your primary goal with your company blog is to help generate leads, promote thought leadership or educate your readers, I encourage you to create content at a level of detail intended to “create a conversation” with your target audience. Think of a blog post as as a “teaser” for more good information to come. Pick a topic that makes it easy for a reader to go from browsing your blog and reading a post to having a follow-up conversation with you or your business development team. Have you made it easy for them to navigate through your website from the blog to find more information on a related topic? Did you provide a call-to-action or a way to provide comments or their contact information as a follow-up? Don’t make your blog a one-way street…make it a two-way conversation.
Thanks to Molly Thompson, Crossroads PR and Marketing
#13 – A Marketing Tool
Our website blog is one of our most important marketing tools. Our clients are Americans living abroad, and we publish at least one post every week relating to US expat taxes (we are a leading expat tax services provider) or another area of expat interest. Previous posts have covered what American expats miss most from the States, and the launch of a new online bank for Americans living in Europe. The key is to create high-quality, original content that is relevant and engaging for our clients. We also endeavor to include keywords that our clients search for, which we research, so that our posts rank well in Google. We use Google Analytics to see how our posts perform, and this in turn informs future post topics. The aesthetic of the post is very important too. Over time our blog has significantly contributed to the growth of our business.
Thanks to Greg Dewald, Bright!Tax
#14 – Encouraging Followers
We use our blog as the perfect platform to create content aligned with our company’s ideals, corporate social responsibility and to promote our products’ added value. It’s a space where we encourage our followers to raise happy children and spark their creativity, while striving to protect kids from aggressive marketing tactics, in hopes to preserve their innocence and imagination. The idea with our blog is to form a community around our brand, an integrated family that wants to receive simple information that helps them understand why the decision-making process is so transcendental when it comes to buying toys, parenting or planning activities for their children. Hope this info is useful!
Thanks to Daniela Arangom, Wiser Toys
#15 – Educate Potential Clients
My blog provides 3 important benefits for my business. First of all, the informative blog posts demonstrates to potential clients that I am an expert in my industry. A well-designed website helps to establish credibility for my business, but the informative content provided on the blog shows we have the in-depth knowledge to deliver what we promise. The second benefit of my blog is educating potential clients. I often blog about what a customer should expect when they utilize the type of services my company provides. This gives the client a brief background on how the process works as well as various industry terms they previously may not have been familiar with. This education helps brings the client up to speed and allows for smoother communication and closing of the deal. The third important benefit of the blog is giving clients a reason to return to the website. A frequently updated blog gives them incentive to check back periodically and see what new posts have been published. Staying top of find with potential clients is important, as it helps ensure they will contact me once they are ready to proceed and use my services.
Thanks to Jeff Hensel, North Coast Financial, Inc.