7 Reasons Your Small Business Needs a Business Blog – Part II

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Last week the 7 Reasons Your Small Business Needs a Business Blog – Part I was published.  This is Part II.

In first section of this two part series we discussed the following three reasons your small business needs a business blog:

  1. Take Control of Your Brand
  2. Build Trust
  3. Get Found Through Search
The following items round out seven reasons.  There are more reasons but I feel these are the seven most important reasons, the reasons that will ultimately have the most impact on your small business.
You can also purchase the Social Tools Book, which will take you a little farther down the rabbit hole.

4) Establish Expertise

No one likes reading boring industry barf posts, but they are important (more to come on why in the next few weeks).  In the insurance industry people love to write about coverage, its easy to write about and feels like the right thing to do.

The problem is insurance consumers do not like to read about coverage.  They might skim it if they have a serious problem or question.  But they don’t want to read anything super technical about they coverage.

What insurance consumers want is a solution.  Insurance consumers don’t want know the why, they want to know the how… This holds true for small business no matter what industry you may work in.

Your potential customers want to see that you have expertise (technical barf), so the boring technical posts need to be there but remember what they are looking for is a recommendation.  That is what drives them to purchase.

5) Strengthen and Expand Relationships

What makes social media and blogging a revolutionary communication medium is ability to make yourself available to clients and prospects on their terms (This was a strong premise in my Future of Social Media post).  Availability is a very important aspect of building social capital, the currency of the Internet.

I definitely have banged this drum quite a bit over the last few weeks but what it boils down to is simple, all us small business peep’s have is relationship.

Someone’s price is always going to be better.

Someone’s service is always going to be better.

Someone’s “Fill-in-the-blank” is always going to better.

Except relationship.  You can have the BEST relationship with someone.  People make crazy decisions because of relationship.  When your competitor walks into your client’s business and asks for the sale it’s the relationship you have that is going to make them say No.  Not your price, not your service, not your whatever…

Your blog is another way to build relationships that can last a lifetime.

6) Capture Leads (Subscriptions)

It is a fact of business that not everyone you meet will do business with you right away.   We can agree on that, right?  But some of the people you meet will and that’s how we make money.  So what happens to all the people we meet that might want to do business with us but just don’t want to right now?

How are you capturing their information and communicating with them throughout the year?

Your blog if set-up and executed properly is a natural lead (think subscription) capturing tool.  Whether those subscriptions are Twitter followers, Facebook Likes, LinkedIn Connections, or Newsletter Subscribers your blog content is going to drive people to want to stay in touch with you.

If you blog sucks, less people will subscribe, if your blog rocks it, more people will subscribe.  Over time when a need arises these subscribers are going to come to you because they’ve been following you for a while, view you as an expert, trust you, and will WANT to do business with you.

7) Sell More

At it’s purest form, this is what we’re trying to do, we’re trying to sell more.  Your business blog is going to allow you to take control of your brand, build trust, get found online, establish your expertise, strengthen relationships, capture leads and hopefully if the moon and stars align properly help you to sell more of whatever it is you sell.

I could say a whole lot more on this but what all the words would boil down to is a business blog helps you sell more of whatever it is you sell.  It’s that simple.

The Rub

So I hope you’ve found this list of 7 reasons your small business needs a business blog useful.  The argument for your business having a blog I think is settled… You Should!  But I know it’s not that easy.  In the coming weeks we’ll discuss some different ways to go about blogging that may help you get off the fence if you haven’t started a blog or improve your blog if you have.

Thank you.

I am Ryan Hanley

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Comments

  1. says

    As a blogger, it amazes me when I meet business owners who don’t take advantage of this foundation of social media.

    1. Your blog serves as your “hub” for all of your other socia media: facebook, twitter, pinterest, instagram, LinkedIn, the list goes on;
    2. It’s FREE and;
    3. Relatively EASY to learn;
    4. It helps your customers know you better (this goes with Ryan’s point on Branding). Even if you are an insurance agent, and your business is selling insurance, if you blog about your kid’s little league game, it’s puts a human face on your business presence. People prefer to do business with someone they can relate to, rather than just another generic ad or website.
    5. It’s FUN!

    The only downside is that it does take a little time to learn, but the good thing is, there is so much information out there that if you are really motivated, it won’t take you long.
    In the end, it will be all that much better for your bottom line, and customer relations, and you won’t believe the opportunities that come from networking online.

  2. Anonymous says

    Ryan:  I’m a new, young producer in Midwest Ohio.  I’ve been following some of your stuff for about 6 months now.  This post is scratching my itch to FINALLY get something (namely, a blog) going with the whole social media thing.  My only questions is this.  You’re an NY guy; I’m in small town Ohio.  Do you think that there’s just as much of a need for blogging-type activity in small businesses set in rural America?  In other words, if I set sail on the S.S. Social Media, would it amount to a small-town agent pretending he was a urban agent?

    • says

      Chad,

      That is a really excellent question (You’ve actually just inspired a blog post) but I will do my best to answer briefly here.  

      The quick answer is Yes you should have a blog.  Answer these two questions: Do people in your community use the Internet?  Can you provide valuable solutions to their insurance problems?

      If you answered Yes to both those questions then you have your answer.

      Maybe not as many people are searching for insurance where you live, but if your clients knew that you had a great website that they could lean on to get information and updates about their insurance do you think that would provide some fencing to keep them in your Agency?

      Also just because your Agency is located in small town Ohio doesn’t mean small town Ohio is only place in Ohio that you have to write business.

      Does that help at all?

      • Anonymous says

        Thanks, Ryan.  I do see your point about the possibility of broadening my prospect base (that actually crossed my mind as I was typing my question).  In fact, I suppose it could be argued that successful online networking may be the surest way to “localize” much of the business that seems so far out of reach.

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