You’ve been asking yourself, should I start a blog? As a small business owner, you’ve repeatedly read and heard that blogging is good for business, but you’re still unsure. Here are some answers to your question.
Should I start a blog? The statistics say yes.
Let’s look at a few. When it comes to small business marketing:
- Those who blog capture 126% more leads than those that do not.
- They also receive nearly twice as many inbound website links as those without a blog.
- About 70% of consumers say they initially learned about a small business via their blog, not paid advertising.
- 60% of consumers say that reading a company’s blog has made them feel positive about that company.
- And more than 60% of consumers have purchased something based on what they read in a blog.
Do the math. The ability to generate more traffic, leads, links and sharing can broaden your marketing reach exponentially. That’s how you make more sales and grow your business.
Should I start a blog? Only if you want to be found online.
Blogging is a proven winner when it comes to boosting your website’s SEO. Google and other search engines rank fresh, original content higher, which is why consistent, relatively frequent blogging can have such a tremendous impact. When you make an effort to learn which keywords and phrases your top prospects use to search for products or services like yours, you can use those keywords in your articles, too.
There’s a catch here, though. If your website isn’t easy to navigate and doesn’t contain up-to-date content, attracting more traffic could backfire. A blog cannot add value to something that has little value to begin with.
Should I start a blog? Yes, if you want to relate to your audience.
This is a unique opportunity to communicate your brand – who you are as a business. You can do that by providing practical information, but you can also share things that are interesting or entertaining. You can talk about community organizations your business supports or relate funny or poignant stories about how customers have benefited from your products or services.
And it’s perfectly OK to be directly promotional now and then. When your big annual sale is coming up, give readers a sneak preview of the deals available. Talk about your new summer apparel or menu, a new painless dental technique you now use, etc.
Over time, your blog helps to humanize your business. That can be especially important for a small business, because in the end, people prefer to do buy from people they know and like, whether they are buying a new dress, getting a haircut, choosing a new dentist or church, or hiring someone to landscape their yard.
Should I start a blog? Common excuses.
Not everyone is comfortable writing. Or you may feel you don’t have time to devote to composing a new article or two every week. If you have employees, enlist their help, to share the work and add new perspectives to your blog. (Just be sure it retains a consistent “voice” for your business so readers don’t get confused.)
Or consider that starting a blog is a perfect opportunity to get professional help in an area that will definitely benefit your business. Work with an outside marketing team with proven expertise to manage your blog, write articles and post them.
Blogging isn’t the only marketing avenue you should pursue, of course. But given its broad powers to help online searchers find you, learn more about you and connect with you, it is something you ignore at your potential peril.
Not having a blog doesn’t mean your small business will go out of business, but the time you invest could be repaid many-fold. Only you can weigh the potential benefits against your business and marketing goals to determine if blogging is right for you.