From: Debbie McNeil
How to Use Blogging to Grow Your Business
Blogging is a great way to grow your business. It adds credibility to your business, helps brand you and your business and creates the kind of community and authenticity prospects are craving. People no longer care to do business with a nameless faceless entity; they want to know who they’re doing business with and what they’re about. A blog helps you accomplish this, thus building your awareness and customer base. Here are a few tips and strategies to use blogging to grow your business.
#1 Blogging is a fine balance of information and entertainment. People do want to get to know you and your personality however only if it relates to helping them solve their problems. So too much information isn’t necessarily a good thing. Your blog will ideally offer tips, strategies and advice on how to use stamps. You can, and should, mix in stories that relate to the blog posts however, blogging about what you had for breakfast or how the date you went on last night didn’t go so well, isn’t relevant or helpful to your readers. So be personable and share stories as they relate to your Stampin' Up! business. Ask yourself if it benefits the reader, if it doesn’t, get rid of it.
#2 Blog frequently. A blog helps draw traffic because it’s updated frequently and thus can achieve a higher search engine ranking than your DBWS website. Yet if you only blog once a month not only are you short changing your readers, you’re shortchanging yourself because the search engine results are going to suffer. The great thing about blogging is that you can write ten posts in one sitting and then schedule them to be posted over the next twenty days; you don’t have to sit down every single day and write something. For instance, if I have a class where we have made 5 cards, that's five different posts, on five different days. Find a posting schedule that works for you and also benefits your readers and the search engines, a minimum would be once a week.
#3 Be sure to link to your website. One of the advantages of a blog is that people often land there instead of your website, due to the search engine optimization features. If you want to drive traffic to your DBWS store home page, make sure there is at least one link to it.
#4 Have patience. It takes time to build up a following and for some it doesn’t really ever happen. Does that mean your blog isn’t working to help build your business? Absolutely not. Many people may read your blog posts without subscribing or commenting but if the information they found was helpful, they’ll be more likely to buy from you.
#5 Choose your blog host wisely. There are many blogging hosts, WordPress, Blogger, Typepad and so on. Compare the features and functions each offers before signing up and building your blog. WordPress offers a number of SEO features, tagging, analytics and so on and is very easy to use.
Blogging helps you build your business in other not so obvious was as well. You’ll learn what your audience likes to read and comment on. You’ll also learn more about what their problems are and how you can solve them and thus build your business. All in all, blogging is an exceptional way to connect to your audience, build traffic, and sales.