After over a decade of explosive growth, blogs have proven themselves far more than a vanity fad of the new millennium. Blogs will change your business by reversing the funnel. Instead of blasting an advertising message out to the masses, your can blog for business and pull prospects in to your marketing stream.
Like an office reception area, the best business blogs invite prospects in and make them comfortable, usually by offering information or entertainment relevant to an ideal customer.
Blog for Business – Understand Your Goals
The best business blogs begin with the end in mind and employ a specific strategy related to their marketing goals. When they blog for business lead generation, they may use a strong call-to-action in every post. When blogging for brand recognition and promotion, they will emphasize subscriptions that lead to repeat visits.
Some businesses use different blogs for different goals, allowing them to target a variety customers. One blog might generate leads, while another educates new customers, and a third upsells to repeat customers.
Blog for Business – Content Rules
One feature all the best business blogs share is quality content. Once you clarify the goals for your blog, you need to get back into the frame of mind of your ideal customer so your blog will offer up the solutions or diversions this prospect seeks.
Unlike cold prospects who have their guard up when receiving a sales pitch, blog visitors relax because they control the flow of information. People who would never pick up and read your brochure cover to cover will dig deep into the stories you tell when you blog for business.
Prospects need time to make up their minds whether considering a major purchase or simply agreeing to give up their email addresses. Just as it may take seven contacts before a customer is ready to sign up for a recurring lawn service, he may visit your blog seven times before he subscribes.
If subscriptions are important to your marketing strategy when blogging for business, be sure that every post has an easy and obvious subscription button and consider publishing a series of posts on a similar topic. Readers will be moved to subscribe if they like the information in the first post they read and do not want to miss future posts.
Less Is More
When you look at the best business blogs, you see that they have learned not to overwhelm their readers with too many choices. You may want to take some of the navigation off the front page and create a “Start Here” page for new visitors. Make it easy for visitors to find what they need and then do what you want them to do.
Blogs will change your business when you provide the content that pulls new customers to your website and then give them compelling reasons to return.