I was talking to a friend and avid blogger recently about how much time and effort goes into starting and growing a blog. She talked about a client who recently started a blog but frustrated from lack of followers. So typical! Natalie MacNeil, Media Producer and award winning blogger for “She Takes on the World, says, “Remember, it’s not about you. When I ask most new bloggers what they want out of blogging they usually want to grow their business, sell more products, and maybe make money directly from blogging. Once they finish telling me everything they want out of blogging I say, “Now what does your audience want?” That answer doesn’t come as quickly and that’s the most important question bloggers need to ask themselves. At the end of the day, the success of your blog will depend on how focused you are on the needs and wants of the people who read your blog. It’s all about them.”
Nearly two years has passed since I first launched my blog. I remember having a few followers and posts. I was determined to create a quality and informative blog so that my target market, aspiring and established women entrepreneurs, could find good content relevant to their business needs.
If you are a business owner, should you be blogging?
To blog or not to blog, is the question? The answer is that as an entrepreneur, this is a great opportunity to establish yourself as an expert in your industry. If executed effectively, this can be a smart online marketing strategy and an affordable way to grow your business. Blogging is ‘big business’ among entrepreneurs, writers and those who just want to express themselves thru electronic communication. More and more businesses are blogging as they realize the benefits. If you have yet to start a blog, here are FOUR reasons you want to start blogging, today:
Reason 1: Build a loyal following
As you post relevant content regularly, you build a loyal group of followers. Be patient as it takes time. As your followers get to know you, they will feel comfortable in passing on leads and referring you to potential clients. Remember the old saying, people buy and refer people that they know and trust.
I recently listened to the Tom Joyner Morning Show, and Jacque Reed, was interviewing blogger Necole Bitchy who just three short years ago, was unemployed and decided to start a blog out of necessity. Today, NecoleBitchie.com is considered one of the fastest growing celebrity urban blog sites on the internet, with over 3 million hits per month. So, be persistent and consistent with your efforts.
Reason 2: Get paid for blogging
If you write good content, build your following, as you can get paid by advertisers. Many bloggers publish their blogs mainly to earn revenue. For example, you can be compensated for a paid review, writing articles, a ghostwriting gig or simply posting ads on your blog site. Many advertisers look for bloggers with a large following.
A few sites that can help you:
- Google Ad Sense. This is a free program that enables website publishers of all sizes to display relevant Google ads and earn. http://tinyurl.com/ygt6y2h
- Link Share. A leading provider of full-service online marketing solutions specializing in the areas of Search (SEM), Lead Generation and Affiliate Marketing. Link Share pays for affiliate marketing. http://www.linkshare.com/
- PayPerPost. This site allows you to make money blogging! You can pick your advertisers, name your own price and negotiate your own deals. https://payperpost.com/
- Sponsored Review. Bloggers write articles for advertisers after reviewing their products and services. Blogs are posted for review on your blog. Each advertiser has his or her own requirements. Bloggers can earn anything from $10 to $500+ for each review. www.sponsoredreviews.com
Reason 3: Publish your blog articles
There are several online sites where you can submit your articles for publication. Here are a few:
- www.ezinearticles.com. Expert Authors & Writers are able to post their articles to be featured within the site. The searchable database of hundreds of thousands of quality original articles allows email newsletter publishers hungry for fresh content to find articles that they can use for inclusion within their next newsletter.
- www.associatedcontent.com. Associated Content enables anyone to participate in the new content economy by publishing content on any topic, in any format (text, video, audio and images), and connects that content to consumers, partners and advertisers.
- www.articlesbase.com. Articles Base is a free article directory where you can submit and find articles. You can publish your articles for free or find content for your website, ezine, or newsletter.
Reason 4: Post your blog on Social Media Sites
For entrepreneurs using social media as a marketing strategy is a great way to build your business, with minimal to no investment except your time and effort.
- Facebook – Create a Facebook profile and add the “My Blog Application.” Again, join groups and pages that pertain to your blog topic and interact with other members. Share your link with pages and groups and participate in discussion topics.
- Twitter – Twitter allows you to post updates (called Tweets) as often as you want (and limited to 140 characters). When people follow you, they see your tweets. So, by posting the link to your blog, your followers can follow the link back to your blog. If they like the content, they will retweet it.
- LinkedIn – LinkedIn’s edge is the fact that it’s tailored for businesspeople, unlike other social networking sites that also attract a great number of general users. You can use LinkedIn to network with people or groups, or answer questions that other members ask, thus, providing a link to your blog as a reference.
- Digg – The ultimate social media site; it’s become notorious for producing traffic waves so massive that they can have a DOS-style impact on smaller hosts.
- Stumble Upon – Helps members discover and share great websites. As you click Stumble, the site delivers high-quality pages matched to your personal preferences. These pages have been explicitly recommended by your friends or one of 8 million+ other web surfers with interests similar to you.
- del.icio.us – A social bookmarking website; users can mark their favorites with del.icio.us and share them with each other; making it onto the front page of the “recently popular” section on del.icio.us will send a decent amount of traffic so long as the category you’re tagged into is popular.
There are many ways that you can get the most out of promoting and marketing your blog. By incorporating blogging as part of your internet marketing strategy positions your business to be found in the search engines by those that are interested in your product or service.