Lets start by answering the question: what is a blog anyway? Well, a blog is just a fancy name for the act of sharing knowledge, expertise and opinions in writing from a personal perspective. This can be done by basically anyone that has the ability to type up something. And there lies the trick. Since anyone can write a blog, what makes yours attract readers? why should you even blog to begin with?
We will focus on two reasons why you should blog:
- Inbound Marketing
To understand the value of blogging you first have to understand the concept of branding. That is, personal branding, product branding and business branding. And, no we are not referring to the nice logo that you have for your business. Yes, it is part of the overall branding strategy but that’s for a different discussion. We all know the world’s most popular business brands such as Coca Cola and the world’s most popular product brands such as iPhone. But, do you know your personal brand? Your personal brand, in a nutshell, is what people see in you, your reputation, your skills, your values, your contribution to the society, etc. Personal brand is one of the most overlooked form of branding and the one that has the most impact on a personal level. Cultivating your brand be it for a product, business or self is imperative to gain trust and loyalty from the target market. There are many ways to ensure that you are continuously cultivating your brand to remain competitive in a very versatile market. One sure way of doing so is through content sharing, doing a blog. Now, this doesn’t mean that you should just run to the keyboard now and type up words just to create a random blog. It surely doesn’t mean that you should go and copy content from other sites and paste into your blog. Think in terms of what helpful information can the readers glean from your blog? Does your blog help the readers see the value of your brand and your expertise? Put some thought to your blog before you start writing. Allow the readers to gather some ideas or learn something from reading your blog. Any content you put out in the public domain about your business, product or self, is indeed a way of marketing whether that was your intention or not. This leads to the second reason why you should blog, marketing.
In marketing, not to be confused with advertising, there are two ways of reaching out to your potential customers/clients: Outbound marketing and Inbound marketing. We will focus on inbound marketing for this segment.
Blogging is primarily a way of inbound marketing. Think of any given time that you are looking to learn more about a certain product, service or a concept. Information on how to start a farming business, how to open a restaurant. Or, information on how to stay healthy, why are certain foods not good for you. Or even, information on how to manage finances, or how to be a good photographer. You get the point. Now imagine someone who can provide such information at no cost to you. That is where inbound marketing comes in. As a brand (personal, business, product) you create content that is of need to your target audience. You provide information that is helpful to the readers and at the same time being strategic such that you do not appear to be overselling yourself, this is NOT advertising! Let people come to you because they see the value in your brand after reading the helpful information that you have shared. It is therefore a good idea to include information about you in your blogs so that the readers can reach you if needed. If you are in real estate, write about ways that people can invest wisely, how to avoid scams in real estate, etc. Whatever topic you choose to share knowledge, opinions and expertise on, do not do a drum roll in your opening and then it turns out that your blog was nothing but a waste of alphabets to sell dreams. Please don’t be a dream seller!
Essentially, what you are doing with inbound marketing, rather than the often times annoying advertising and outbound marketing, is attracting customers, clients and employers to your brand without nagging them like a salesperson. This is not to say advertising is not necessary but it has its own place, timing and necessary strategies.
If you do it right, through blogging, you will help improve your brand and attract people through inbound marketing. This will bring trust and ideally loyalty. And, of course, money!
Want to try blogging to improve your (business, product or personal) brand? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org