There are several ways a blog can help your business. It can be a key plank in your social media strategy, and well-optimised posts can draw valuable search engine traffic to your site. But a blog also gives your business that all-important personal touch.
It comes as no surprise that a prospective client will probably scan your website first, before picking up the phone or dropping you an email.
Of course, that means it’s important to have a welcoming home page, a crystal-clear ‘About Us’ section, intuitive navigation and compelling calls to action. These things are important. Imagine yourself at a trade fair. Most of your website is the virtual equivalent of a smart, well-laid-out stand, a smile and a handshake, a brief presentation about your services and a business card to take away.
What makes a prospective client remember you when they get home with a carrier bag crammed full of brochures? For a trade fair, it might be the small talk, the banter – and the conversation where you displayed your knowledge of your sector.
But online, it’s your blog that sets you apart. It’s on your blog that you show that you understand your clients’ needs and that you can deliver what you promise. In fact, a survey by the Content Marketing Institute (CMI), published last year, found that blogs were rated as the most effective content marketing tactic – as effective as ‘in-person events.’ It makes sense. Blogs can express a business’s personality in a much more engaging way than other forms of marketing.
Here are just some of the things you can do with a blog that just won’t work anywhere else on your site:
- Demonstrate how well you know your sector by posting intelligent reactions to the latest industry developments.
- Showcase your recent projects (which, incidentally, means some additional free PR for your clients).
- Introduce new staff and show off the skills and experience they bring on board.
You could also consider these business blog models.
The key thing to remember is that a blog is much more than a place to put photos of the staff Christmas party or rant about your malfunctioning email system. Rather, it is a hugely flexible tool enabling you to add depth, personality and credibility to your website.