Blogging offers an easy way to create powerful word-of-mouth “buzz” for your product, service or business. But only if you use it correctly.
Most people approach a blog (short for weblog) like an online diary. They write their personal thoughts, feelings or ideas about a particular topic or subject, and then sit back and hope people read it.
In reality, a blog is far more than an online diary. It’s a mini Web site that is instantly and easily updatable. And because you do it yourself, a blog doesn’t cost an arm and a leg every time you want to update it or make a change.
Blogs offer three advantages for businesses with limited marketing budgets:
Save time. To post a new entry to your blog, you just add the content and you’re done. You spend more time managing your business rather than your Web site.
Save money. A blog doesn’t require expensive specialists to design and maintain the site.
Higher search engine rankings. Blog pages are more easily read by search engines, which means you get higher rankings when people search for your product or service. And because blogs are updated more often than traditional websites, the fresher content also produces higher rankings.
Most important, blogs allow you to connect on a very personal level with your target audience.
The Internet can be a cold medium because it’s just one person reading text on a screen. Much of the allure and magnetism of a blog stems from the fact that it is written in an intimate first-person voice rather than the cool and distant corporate voice. A blog allows you to inject warmth, personality and passion into a website, so that you reach through the screen and grab the reader on an emotional level.
A good blog cultivates reputation. It helps to create your brand. It helps to show off your personality and brings people into your network.
Best of all, a blog is simple to do and it doesn’t require a huge investment of your time. You can create an effective blog in 60 to 90 minutes a week, including the writing. And you don’t have to be a great writer, as long as you stay focused and provide your readers with information they really want to know about.
If you want to get meaningful content to your target audience while differentiating your business from the competition, you can’t do it much faster or better than with a blog.
Next in this series: Browser-based software makes blogging as easy as pie.
This post is the first in a series of excerpts from OneCoach CEO John Assaraf’s interview with award-winning blogger Andy Wibbels, author of “Blog Wild.”