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Blogging may be the single most effective way to market a small business, yet a surprisingly large number of people fail to take it seriously.
It’s cheap to start, and cheap to scale. It works in almost every industry. It generates sales in the short-term, and is an incredible brand-building tool in the long-term.
When it’s pulled off correctly, it can not only completely transform entire companies, but it can make it incredibly difficult for anyone else to even compete.
The potential here can not be overstated. My first ever hire was a content writer. There’s a reason blogging is at the core of all my companies, (including my eCommerce brands which have gone on to do millions in sales.)
The importance of blogging cannot be understated. In this article, I am going to make the case why it’s time for you to start a blog, and showcase all of the incredible benefits that blogging can offer your small business. Some of these will not be obvious, and I urge you to continue reading with an open mind – taking examples and imagining how they will fit in with your own business, and your existing marketing strategy.
1. Contrary To Popular Belief, Blogs Do Make Money Directly
Most blog owners find success not by using their blog to sell directly, but to funnel readers to somewhere else (such as an email newsletter.) This is typically where the actual selling occurs.
However, that doesn’t mean that it’s not possible to make a direct return from blogging.
In fact, doing so is quite easy.
The reason that many blog owners fail to make money from their blogs isn’t because there’s something inherently wrong with blogging, it’s because they start with the wrong goal in mind.
The blogging community has a bad habit of basing their success off of vanity metrics such as page views, social shares, or comments. Because page views are the goal, they end up writing content that nets them the most page views – and succeed with it.
Imagine however, if they had framed their content from the beginning to actually lead to a sale?
By targeting people who are ready to buy, blogs can act as an excellent bridge between someone who is interested, and actually closing a deal / making a transaction.
For example, let’s say you sell fancy birdhouses.
You would do a lot better writing an article on ‘gifts to buy bird lovers’ (where you have the opportunity to promote your products in a natural setting) than an article on ‘building your own DIY birdhouse’.
Yet, many bloggers make the mistake of targeting the latter option. That’s not to say you couldn’t still find ways to promote your products in that second example article, but the point is that if you want sales, you must frame your articles in a way that encourages immediate sales.
The reason that people claim blogging doesn’t make money is because they go about it with the wrong goal in mind.
Of course, the benefits of a company blog are not only in the short-term. In fact, the real power of blogging lies in its long-term capabilities.
2. Blogging Is An Excellent Branding Tool
Blogging provides you a platform that allows you to truly build a brand in a meaningful and memorable way.
Unlike a social media post which has a shelf-life of less than a day and is too short to fit much in, blogs are intended to be consumed on a more deeper level. Due to the value you’re providing the consumer, they’re actually paying attention to what you have to say.
You’re given the opportunity to really fledge out a message and form a larger connection with your audience, making you and your brand more memorable in their minds and in their hearts.
You’re also given the opportunity to position yourself or your brand as an authority figure in your space – somebody who has true expertise in this field. You’re willing to help others out for free and show them what they need to know. They begin to trust you, your opinions, and share the good experiences they’ve had with your company with their friends and family.
By doing this, it’s not even necessary for consumers in your market to think about your product – if they even think about your industry at all, you’ll surely pop into their head.
3. Blogging Pays Dividends – Forever
Unlike most marketing channels, blogging does not have a shelf life.
A tweet may be gone in 10 seconds. For a Facebook or Instagram post, you may be lucky to get a day out of it. An ad will be gone the second you stop spending money.
Blogging, however, doesn’t have a shelf life. If you invest time or money into developing a blog article, it will pay you dividends for years into the future.
Every single blog article that you release acts as an entrance door for your brand, and these will be found by people years into the future.
This comes from publishing pieces of content that are evergreen – meaning they will always be relevant.
With a proper strategy in place, these articles on timeless topics will be found on search engines, passed around on social media, and linked to from other sites in perpetuity – meaning that articles will continue to work for you long after you’ve finished paying for them.
This is why developing a strong blogging strategy is such a great way to recession-proof your company. Even if your marketing budget drops, your blog will continue sending new customers your way and building relations on autopilot – even if you are no longer willing to keep pouring money into new content.
That’s pretty powerful!
4. Blogging Insulates You From Competitors
One thing that makes blogging challenging is that it’s not something you can just pour money at, and see results right away.
It takes a strategy that must be carefully executed over time. The results tend to be quite exponential, but it may take a while for things to really get off the ground.
However, this offers a key benefit for businesses who have reached that point – if your company builds a successful blog, it insulates you from your competitors.
Not only will it be harder for new companies to take any of your audience away from you, but you will have the ability to get in front of your competitor’s customers with your own marketing messages whenever you’d like.
Imagine how challenging it would be for a company to increase their market share, if you showed up on Google every time somebody typed something relating to your product or service?
Consumers appreciate valuable content that helps them with their lives. When you dominate your industry with your blog, your competitors will have to resort to using paid advertisements in hopes of attracting that same attention.
5. Your Customers Will Love It
Businesses are built upon a fair exchange of value between the consumer and the company.
Obviously, this generally comes in the form of money, in exchange for a product.
However, have you put a value on the attention of your target customers?
Considering there are thousands of companies fighting for it every single day, it’s fair to say that the attention itself has a value.
You aren’t entitled to it for free.
By developing a real content strategy, you bring this value-exchange back into balance, and earn more of your consumer’s attention as a result.
Unlike an ad that people usually run into accident, people will be happy to seek out your content and spend minutes or hours consuming it, if it actually has value.
Blogs are a great relationship building tool, as they allow positive and memorable points of contact all throughout the buying process, and long after your customer has made their first purchase.
Additionally, as you are regularly getting in front of consumers in your market, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to generate awareness for newly released product lines – increasing the lifetime value of each customer.
6. Connections And Relationships With Influencers
Owning a blog makes you a core part of the community that exists within your market.
Many businesses underestimate the power this holds, if they are able to remain personable and authentic within their marketing.
One of the most powerful benefits that blogging offers is the connections you are able to make as a part of this community.
The opportunities that networking with influencers provide are plentiful, and are not always something that can be purchased – regardless of how large your marketing budget is. For example…
- Leveraging influencer’s audiences to help promote your brand in a positive and authentic manner.
- Partnering with influencers on unique projects or products.
- Developing passionate ambassadors willing to help you craft or perfect upcoming products.
For more information on how building a network of influencers in your market can benefit you, click here!
7. The ROI Is Incredible
If it isn’t already obvious, the ROI of blogging is enormous – both in the short-term, and the long-term.
Blogging is cheap to start, and writers can be hired from websites like Upwork for incredibly cheap prices. You do not need a lot of content to start generating a return – even one new article a week can be more than enough.
I also offer writing services as a freelancer, which you can learn more about by clicking here.
Like many marketing methods, it can be scaled over time as it makes more money for you, and there is virtually no risk in starting.
Not only will blogging make you money from the articles directly, they will also continue to build relationships with your audience over time, moving them closer and closer to a sale.
Every article you publish will work for you years into the future, building your brand as an authority figure in your space.
Very few forms of marketing offer such a diverse set of benefits, making blogging something you should consider exploring straight away.
It’s clear that blogging can benefit your business, and act as a great platform for marketing your products or services – but how do you actually get started? More importantly, how do you structure your blog to ensure it’s actually working towards the goals you have in place for it?
I happen to have a course on this exact topic.
My blogging course is $97 and covers every aspect of blogging from beginning to end.
In section one, I show you how to get your blog set up and running without any coding or technical knowledge whatsoever.
In section two, I show you how to develop a content strategy that aligns with your objectives, and share ideas that make developing content easier. If you plan to outsource work to freelancers, I also discuss this in section two.
In section three, I go into detail about marketing blog articles specifically, and how to drive traffic to your blog – and the best practices I’ve learned over 10 years of blogging that keep people coming back.
Finally, in section four, I talk about how to capitalize on that attention, making the most amount of money from your blog possible.
It is probably the most comprehensive course on blogging available, and the only resource you need to buy in order to get up and going today.
I hope that this article has helped to show you just how impactful blogging can be for your business.
Blogging has been the foundation of all of my companies, and this will surely continue well into the future.
If you have any questions about blogging or you’d like me to clarify anything mentioned within this article, please don’t hesitate to reach out. You’re welcome to leave a comment below, or send me an email at james[at]jamesmcallisteronline.com
In any case, I’d love it if you’d send me a link to your blog when you get it online – I’d be happy to see it!
To your success,
– James McAllister
Review the main points of this article in the SlideShare below. Feel free to embed this on your site, use it in your organization, and share it with others! All I ask is that you give credit! (Download links are available from SlideShare’s website, which you can access by clicking the LinkedIn icon)
James I cannot agree with you more buddy. On every reason. Especially the note about blogs being direct money makers. I link up to 14 income streams through my blog.
Ryan K Biddulph(Quote)
Happy to hear that Ryan! Blogging itself can be a great money maker if you consciously work to implement a strategy.
James McAllister recently posted…Starting An Online Business – What To Buy, Broken Down By Budget
Your gives readers clear reasons to start blogging right away. And although there are several other reasons for blogging, the seven you outlined in this article are incredibly fantastic. If not for anything, building relationships is the way of life, but in this case, the bonds you build will set you up for the long run in that you will profit from it.
Moreover, your blog offers you financial freedom as well. You get clients who contacts you to write for them because they love what they see on your blog. Others want to to simply place their link to a post on your blog, and so on.
Thanks for sharing, James.
Hey Moss, very well said!
There are many small businesses out there who think that blogging isn’t a good fit for them, or it’s no longer as valuable as it used to be. Of course, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Even small local businesses have a lot to gain from implementing a blogging and content marketing strategy. There’s just too much to gain to ignore blogging entirely – even for the most obscure of companies.
Always a pleasure talking with you moss!
James McAllister recently posted…Starting An Online Business – What To Buy, Broken Down By Budget