Blogging for business – Giving away free information…wait, what??

When people start their journey of blogging for business, I’m certain most think it’s going to be an easy ride. Many think that business blogging is just about self-promotion and advertising the business. Wouldn’t that be easy! But if that’s you, then you’ve got it all wrong. Blogging is more about social marketing than advertising. Taking the time to blog for your business is an investment in your business, your website and your customers/clients/readers. In fact, in most cases, advertising shouldn’t come into the equation because you’re not really trying to ‘close a deal’ through a blog post. Actually, you’re trying to attract people and have a conversation with them.

Therein lies the problem when the category of ‘advertising’ is removed.

Whilst there’s tonnes of things you can blog about for your business, start with providing solutions to your customers’ most common problems and focus on that. No, nothing to do with relationship dysfunction or car problems (unless you’re a psychologist or mechanic…or both), but problems relating to your industry, service, business or products.

blogging for business

And then here’s the thing – once you’ve determined what the problems are (think of some of the most frequently asked questions), then provide solutions……. wait what?

Yes, trust me on this one, provide them with solutions. Real ones, not dodgy-they’re-going-to-have-to-come-to-you-afterwards-to-fix-it type solutions but real world solutions to your customers’ real world problems.

An example – Pest Controller Mike decides he wants to start a blog to improve the SEO of his website, give himself a bit more exposure and connect with his clients a little more. So Mike thinks about some of the most commonly asked questions from his clients. Things like problems with ants on benches, cockroach infestations and termite prevention immediately come to mind. Mike could then write good quality blog posts on ‘How to keep your kitchen benches ant-free’ or ‘6 sure fire ways to make your house less ant-appealing’, ‘How to stop termites from eating your house while you sleep’, ‘5 ways to evict cockroaches from your pantry’ etc, etc. You get the idea.

Now I know that some will be shaking their heads and shouting at the computer screen at the moment saying ‘what are you crazy?? That’s giving away information!! For free!! Without anything in return!!! (yes that’s a lot of exclamation marks but you’re screaming at the computer!)…. But before you slam the screen of your laptop shut just bear with me for a minute.

Yes sure you’re giving away information. But don’t for one second think you’re writing yourself out of a job just yet. See the thing is, people that come to your website aren’t likely to convert straight away. Chances are they’re actually looking for answers to problems they currently have. Like Mike’s Pest Control website for example- lots of people that hit his site will at first be looking for solutions to their ant/cockie/termite problems. And if you don’t provide that information, they’re going to go elsewhere for it anyway!

blogging for business

Providing valuable and useful information to your readers and potential customers serves 2 purposes – credibility and trust. Credibility is developed by providing worthwhile and accurate information about a topic. Trust is that you’re providing it to them and expecting nothing in return. Trust is also developed with your readers and customers by showing that you know what their issues are and you care enough to provide them with some answers.

blogging for business

Sure, not all of your readers will convert to customers straight away, but when they’re ready to take action, who’s the person imprinted in their mind? Someone they’ve pulled from the Yellow Pages? (does that even exist anymore) or someone that’s shown they’re a real person, with knowledge in the area and compassion for their customers?

 

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