Day 17: How To Use a Blog For Your Business

When it comes to online business, it is a website that serves as a major part of your online presence. It is in essence your office. However, there needs to be a place where customers and visitors can go to learn more about you and get to see you with your hair down, so to speak? This is where starting a blog comes in. It can serve as a companion to your main website and another way to build more traffic too.

Blogging is basically online journaling. People start blogs everyday on a number of topics. You can talk about a number of topics and get responses from those who visit and read what you post.

As a business tool, you should use your blog as a place where customers (and potential ones) can find out more about your business and more importantly, the person behind the business. A blog for your business is a great way to get people talking about your business.

You can show your expertise, share important tidbits, and even more so show who you are and why you do what you do.

Getting Started

Getting started is not as hard as you think. Many blogging platforms offer free web hosting. Two popular blog free hosting sites are WordPress.com and Blogger.Customizing your blog to your needs is not a chore when you have ready-made templates to help you. Each site offers step-by-step instructions to help you get up and running in no time.

I highly suggest that once you get the idea of what blogging is that you move from a free platform to a self-version such as WordPress.org. The advantages are great and you can use your own domain name as well as keep up with your files.

Don’t make it hard to locate your blog. Keep the domain name simple; even making it a part of your site with a domain something like “http://www.yourdomain.com/blog”. If they know your website name, then they will be able to find your blog. You can also create a link to the blog right from your website’s pages and vice versa.

What Will Your Blog Include?

Ideally, you may want to use your blog to draw more traffic to your product or service. Existing customers can find a place to ask questions and communicate with other customers. For people who find you through your blog (versus your business website), they can find out from your customers just how great your products or services are just by reading the comments.

Offer interesting relevant content. Keep in mind that blog posts are shorter than full fledged articles, making it easier for readers to gain insight and information. Create posts that will engage the reader.

For example, if you happen to have a book that happens to be about gardening, offer content that gives tips for growing different types of flowers or how to winterize your garden as examples.

You can even give them a teaser so to speak. Those interested in learning more can do so by visiting the link you include in the individual post that refers them to a page on your website with more detail about your book.

Remember to keep the voice of your blog relaxed and inviting in order to keep past readers coming back and new ones interested in learning more.

Your blog will be a less formal setting so you can use it to give your customers a place to do a variety of things. First, they can offer their opinions. With blog posts, there are always places for comments. Pose questions in your posts like “How can we improve our business?” or “What did you think of the new product line?” and invite visitors to provide their feedback in the comment section.

Post contest links and discount coupon codes on your blog. To enter the contests or take advantage of the codes the readers will have to follow the link back to your website.

As you gain a wider readership, you can add more features. How about a “Letter from the Owner” type section? You can post blurbs from reader comments and your take on what they have to say. Invite notable guest writers who have something to offer your readers to blog for you as well.

Above all, interact with your readers. When they comment, answer back. This shows that you are not just there to promote your website or to sell them something. In fact, try your hardest not to sell them anything at all – at least at first. Instead, give them helpful information, interact with them and then post links to your main site as well as other sites. Let them find their way to your site based on your newfound relationship.

PS. Have you missed any of the Getting Started with Online Marketing Series? Well what are you waiting for catch up here.

LaTara

LaTara is the Chief Blogger and trainer at Get Online Basics, providing the work at home entrepreneur and small business owner with practical and viable solutions for building their online presence. Start your training to better online marketing with the Get Online Basics Training Center. Just click the website link and you will be redirected.

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3 Responses to Day 17: How To Use a Blog For Your Business
  1. virtualfreedom
    October 5, 2010 | 11:29 am

    RT @latarahamying: RT: @GetOnlineBasics Day 17: How To Use a Blog For Your Business http://ht.ly/19iGGI

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by LaTara Ham-Ying, virtualfreedom. virtualfreedom said: RT @latarahamying: RT: @GetOnlineBasics Day 17: How To Use a Blog For Your Business http://ht.ly/19iGGI [...]

  3. LaTara Ham-Ying
    October 5, 2010 | 4:26 pm

    RT: @GetOnlineBasics Day 17: How To Use a Blog For Your Business http://ht.ly/19iGGI

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