Do you have a real reason for blogging?
If you’ve been told “Blogging is good for business”, it’s true – but only when you have a really good reason for doing it and only if it fits into your plan for growing your business.
If you’ve been told, “You must have a blog”, You must have a Facebook Page”, You must have an Easter / Halloween / Christmas special offer, the way to avoid being “sold” on things by people who don’t know your business is to have a simple one page plan for the coming 12 months.
What’s your plan?
If your plan is to grow your business by 20% and you’ve decided that the best way to do that is by telemarketing, advertising on TV, radio or in the press, using a Pay Per Click campaign or by selling more to existing clients (always the most profitable option), then blogging isn’t going to add much to that plan. [pullquote]See Why You MUST have a Business Plan [/pullquote]
On the other hand, if you’ve decided you want to build your own mailing list, prove your expertise, become a trusted advisor to your audience, improve the SEO of your website or attract new clients, then blogging will help you to achieve those goals – but ONLY IF, above all else, you have something to say that is useful, entertaining or original. Visit the amazing Gaping Void Art for more cartoons like the one above from Hugh MacLoed.
Knowing WHY you blog will lead you to your audience
[pullquote]One of the most frequently asked questions by bloggers is, “How do I find readers?”[/pullquote] If you have a very clear and specific reason for blogging, you will know exactly who you are blogging for. Like all good marketing, have a specific person in mind who is typical of your target audience and decide on the relationship you want to have with them, then blog just for them.
Will you be:
- A problem solver?
- A trusted advisor?
- A mentor?
- An alternative viewpoint?
- A thought provoker?
- A discussion leader?
- A community builder?
Knowing this relationship will help you to decide on the style and language you use: Will you write the way you speak, use idioms, cliches, sarcasm, irony, business language, use “I”, “we” or “you”? Will you have a personality or a corporate voice? All of these decisions are dictated by why you are blogging and what you want to achieve.
How to blog and what to blog about
When you’ve decided on why you want to blog, who you are blogging for and what relationship you will have with your audience, come back for the next posts on “How to Blog”, “What to Blog About”, “How to attract raving fans” “How to measure results” and “How to re-use content”.