If you’re a small business owner, you spend tremendous amounts of time and energy devoted to growing your business. In challenging times like these, sometimes basic survival becomes the most important goal.
The media environment has radically changed in recent years, and the coronavirus pandemic has only caused more upheaval. Business owners must continuously learn and adapt to establish themselves in their niche and hold on to their market share.
In today’s marketing world, fast company growth is not possible without effective content marketing. And there are few better ways to get started than a small business blog.
Why Is a Blog Important for Businesses?
Producing blog content is a powerful and essential marketing tool. It’s key to establishing an online presence and building relationships with your target audience.
1. It Builds Brand Recognition
Your blog is the voice of your company. It’s an opportunity to shape and present your brand’s identity and style to a broader audience. You’re designing a brand identity with every step of this process.
Reading a blog feature from your small business might be the very first introduction many potential customers have to who you are as a company. Even if they’re not reading about the particular product or service you offer, readers learn to recognize your brand and associate it with the quality content they’re reading.
2. Content Generates Traffic
Online marketing is all about directing people to your website. The more quality blog content you produce, the more readers you’ll be drawing to your site. They may not become customers immediately, but the increased traffic to your site will make you more prominent in search results and start a cycle of bringing even more visitors to your platform.
3. It’s a Chance to Establish Authority
Writing a blog for your business is an opportunity to speak in your business’s voice without directly trying to make a sale. Many readers may initially be distrustful of the tone of traditional marketing content.
In writing not to sell but to inform or entertain, you are creating a more sophisticated brand voice and giving your brand a sense of authority. Intelligent and well-written features show readers that the people behind your brand are knowledgeable in your niche.
4. Readers Are More Likely to Share Blog Posts
Producing content on a blog is a powerful way for your business to create some buzz on social media. Effective social media marketing depends on creating posts that invite engagement. Great blog posts encourage people to share the content with an even wider audience.
Social media platforms are all about starting conversations, so you want your content to spark meaningful interactions. A compelling and high-quality blog post can work wonders for your brand if it’s shared widely.
How to Start a Small Business Blog
So you’ve decided to start a blog. How do you make the best of this opportunity? It’s not enough to start pumping out random content and hope something sticks. Effective content marketing with a blog requires careful thought and preparation.
The content itself needs to be strong and appropriate for your audience, and it needs to be a genuine expression of your company’s identity and brand values. Who are you as a small business, and what do you want to share?
Here are the necessary set-up steps to shape your blog strategy:
Pick a Name
The name of the blog is going to be the very first thing readers see. It should set the tone for readers and invite them to read and share. The name should also clearly communicate the tone and purpose of the blog.
Are you aiming to provide professional quality information on a topic, or are you trying to entertain readers and express your brand’s personality? Readers should get a sense of the content type from the blog’s name.
Design Your Site
Every digital marketing professional will tell you: It doesn’t matter how much traffic you bring to your site if the site is a mess. A compelling and exciting lead or beautiful product image can bring someone to your platform, but they’re not going to stay if your site is not intuitive, inviting, and easy to navigate.
The content itself needs to be easy to consume. A page full of crowded text can turn readers away. The website layout and design are a crucial part of drawing in customers and shaping the first impression readers will take away from your company and brand.
Create a Content Strategy
What’s the focus of your blog? What kind of topics will you cover, how often will you post, and where will you share the content? A marketing strategy is essential for maximizing the reach of your blog and focusing on the ideas and characteristics you want to communicate about your business.
Set clear parameters for how your blog will function and fit into the broader strategy of your company. Deciding exactly when and what you will produce on the blog is critical for your planning. A reader is not going to visit your blog again and again if the topic changes unpredictably, or the posts are random or infrequent.
Write SEO Content
And now, after you’ve put in all the time planning, it’s time for the writing. Great content required ongoing dedication and a commitment to improvement. If you don’t have the time or writing skills to do it yourself, hire people you trust to produce high-quality content at regular intervals.
Writing requires not only creativity but also technicality. On the creative side, the writer needs to be able to come up with engaging and relevant blog post ideas on a reliable schedule.
You can find research from elsewhere on the web, use your own case studies in your marketing for certain products, explore the pros and cons around an issue or item, and anything else that might be compelling and interesting for your audience.
On the technical side, readers need to be able to find the content. The writing should be relevant to your business and your target audience. You should use search engine optimization (SEO) to give it a better chance of showing up in search results when potential customers are looking for services like yours.
A small business blog is an opportunity to create a voice for your company and introduce it to potential customers. You can give it authority, shape its personality, and invite customers into the conversation.
Merely having a website is no longer enough for many small businesses in the digital age. Creating growth or maintaining stability means fostering relationships with customers and establishing a real presence online, and it’s hard to do that without a blog!
If you’re ready to take the next step, head over to our article on How to Start a Business Blog.