We are living in a digital age. Information exists in incredible abundance and the internet is the vehicle that delivers that information to individuals all around the world. This affords entrepreneurs from all industries the opportunity to provide some of that information to consumers as they search for solutions to their problems using the internet.
Regardless of which industry you are in – whether in real estate, financial services, business coaching, or graphic design – one of the most effective ways to provide valuable information for prospects in your market is to have your own blog.
Here are 5 reasons why, as an entrepreneur, you should utilize the power of blogging to grow your business:
1. Your competitors probably don’t have one
Creating a blog from which to share information about yourself, your products or yours services is likely to give you an immediate competitive advantage. Many professional still depend mostly on face-to-face interactions or phone calls to prospect for new business. While these methods are still effective, as a professional in the digital age it is equally important to establish a presence online. A strong online presence – something a blog is instrumental in creating – will help you stand out from the hundreds, maybe thousands of others competing to serve the same market.
2. Potentials customers can find you
Each time you post relevant and valuable content on your blog, you give the major search engines more incentive to rank your articles in the top of their search results. This is called Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The job of a search engine is to present people with content that is most relevant to the keywords they use in their search. The more content you have on your blog (and the more specific keywords you have within that content), the more likely you are to appear at the top of your prospect’s search results.
Giving potential customers a way to find you is incredibly powerful. Instead of calling someone who may or may not need what you’re offering, these people find you precisely when they’re searching for the answers they seek. The fact that they are searching for specific information online proves that a need already exists. The content you share in your articles should help them solve that need.
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3. You position yourself as an authority in your market/niche
The written word is very powerful. There is an immediate perception of authority of an individual who writes professional and helpful articles to serve their target audience. Most people are consumers of information, not producers of it. Becoming a producer is a sign of leadership, experience, wisdom, and credibility. By becoming the source of information, you position yourself as a thought leader in your market.
Once positioned as an authority, any recommendations that you make carry with them an increased level of validity. This enables you to recommend products or services that are most relevant and most helpful to your market. If you’ve done a good job of providing valuable content and educating your readers, they will trust your recommendations.
4. You can engage in conversation with your audience
A blog is an excellent way to interact with existing and potential customers. By allowing readers to comment on the bottom of your articles, you give them the opportunity to provide feedback or ask questions. By responding to your readers, you not only help address their concerns but you also demonstrate that you care enough to communicate with them. This helps build likeability and trust. As we all know, people like to do business with someone they like and trust.
Giving your readers the option to subscribe to a mailing list is a good idea. This will enable you to follow up with potential customers via email and also continue to send them information over a period of time. You should also give your readers the ability to share your article easily and on various platforms. If you article is shared by your readers on networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter, then you benefit from exposure to the people within the networks of your readers.
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5. You never know what doors may open
The 4 benefits listed above may seem obvious to those who are familiar with blogging. But the one benefit, and perhaps the greatest benefit, that is often overlooked are the opportunities that will likely come to you because you have a blog. There are countless stories of individuals who have received job offers, been offered promotions, been asked to speak at conferences and industry events because of their blogs. Remember: potential customers aren’t the only people who might visit your blog. Other professionals from your industry and outside industries are likely to find you, and you never know what fruitful opportunities these new connections might bring you.
As we conduct business in the digital age, we must learn to be effective both offline and online. A blog is a critical component of a strong online presence, enabling professionals and entrepreneurs to become the provider of information that is relevant and helpful to their specific market. By consistently posting valuable content online, you increase your credibility in the marketplace. You also reap the benefits of having your articles work for you 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, to educate and attract potential customers or clients to you. And lastly, you never know what doors may open as a result.
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