As a small business owner, you might read blogs on various topics related to marketing and managing your business. But do you write a blog of your own for your customers, prospective customers and colleagues to read? Writing a blog gives you a chance to share your thoughts and expertise on a wide range of topics, and it gives outsiders a glimpse inside your small business.
Writing a weekly or a monthly blog post is one of the best ways to drive traffic to your website. Instead of promoting your new product, service or your business in general, promoting a fun and interesting blog post on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media platform is often a more attractive way to approach your customers. Instead of feeling like they are being directly “sold to,” they see and hear the human voice behind your company, and can then visit your website to learn more about how your products, services or menu might be of interest to them.
Additionally, writing blog posts on industry-related topics (such as a wine retailer writing about wine-tasting basics, or new laws that may affect wine-making in a certain state), will establish you as the knowledgeable and “go-to” business for advice or questions that your customers may have.
Without getting into too many specifics, blogging is an excellent way for your company’s website to boost its SEO (search engine optimization). If someone is looking for “how to organize my small closet,” and your retail shop recently posted a blog post on just that, it’s more likely your blog will appear in the search results.
Blogging also ensures that you’ll have something new to post on Facebook, Twitter or link back to on Instagram. Again, all of these efforts drive your followers back to your website – and that’s a good thing!
While it may seem overwhelming to write a blog post each week or month, a little planning can go a long way.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
- Think about what your customers want to hear. Remember, you’re writing this for them, not for yourself. Do they always ask about the different types of beers you serve? Or, maybe they want to learn more about how to wear this season’s latest trends. Answer those types of questions.
- Plan your content. Start by creating a list of blog topics that you have floating around in your head. Then, add in some of the holidays that are coming up in the next few months. Next, make a list of questions that your customers frequently ask. There you go! You probably have a few weeks’ worth of content. Simply assign a date to each topic, and stick to it!
- Be consistent. If you’re interested in creating a blog, you have to be willing to put in the time to maintain it. If a customer sees that your last blog post is from a few months ago, they might not regard it as a reliable or interesting source of information.
- Keep it short and sweet. Aim to keep your blog posts around 400 words total. Any longer, you may lose readers, and any shorter, you may leave your readers wanting more. Make every word count!
- Make your content shareable. Add the appropriate social media “share” icons so that your customers can easily share your blog post with their social media networks.