Win-Customers-with-business-BlogWhen a small business owner asks, “What are the top 3 things you recommend a business do to establish itself properly online?”, I always answer…

1. Create a quality website
2a. Establish a solid, consistent social media presence (1 or 2 platforms done well is excellent!)
2b. Blog for your business
2c. Learn about and implement SEO

So, yes, I’m not being very fair when I lump 3 different things into 1 point. But I have a really hard time saying that one of those elements of a strong online presence is that much more important than the other 2. Plus, they are interconnected in a lot of ways.

Of those three 2’s listed above, I’d say that blogging is the one that either never happens at all or occurs very infrequently. There are many extremely valuable reasons to blog for your business. Business owners who want to blog but don’t typically say they either lack the time, lack the ideas or don’t feel they have the writing chops to create blog posts.

But guess what?

I’m going to tell you how you can easily and effectively blog for your business in a way that nixes all 3 of those blogging roadblocks.

Using your Blog to Win Customers

The “magic” blogging formula boils down to creating blog posts that answer the questions your customers (and potential customers) frequently ask you. By doing this, you are proving your knowledge, gaining trust, driving repeat traffic to your website and capitalizing on SEO opportunities (since these frequently asked questions are the same queries customers are typing into Google).

If a potential customer is doing online research to find a service provider or make the best product buying decision, and he continues to find links to your website (via your blog posts) instead of your competitors’ sites, it will make his choice a pretty easy and obvious one.

So, Where Do I Start?

The first step to easily and effectively blog for your business is to generate ideas for your blog posts. Start by making a list of questions you and your employees are asked every day. Consider questions you receive for all parts of the buying process, too. And don’t shy away from questions relating to price (if applicable).

Next, think about any employee training or marketing materials you have that may address some of these questions. Then consider any email responses you’ve sent to potential customers, and answers given to messages sent to your Facebook fan page. Chances are you already have drafted several blog posts without knowing it!

You don’t have to be an award-winning journalist to write a business blog. In fact, I believe that writing in the same way you speak is the best way to approach it. You want your customers to trust you and feel comfortable with you, and your explanations to their questions be easily understood.

As for what questions to answer first on your new blog, I recommend beginning with the basics then building from there. For example, we wrote our “What is SEO?” post before ever writing about keyword research, title tags and on-page SEO techniques.

Blogging platforms typically allow you to schedule posts in advance, too. So if you do find that you have several FAQs that you’ve already written answers for, go ahead and copy/paste them into new blog posts, and schedule them for future publishing. You can make it as easy as using the question as your post title and your answer as the post text.

When you take a step back and look around, you’ll likely see that not only is business blogging very doable, but that it really doesn’t require gobs of time, special writing skills or hours spent scratching your heads for ideas.

So what do you think? Will you give business blogging a try?

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