Understanding Business Blogs

blogging miriam slozberg

Times are evolving constantly. In the highly competitive marketplace, small and medium sized business entities (SMBs) veer away from the traditional to more creative and interactive approaches to doing business. Opportunities now spring from new markets, new consumer segments and new marketing tools exemplified by websites specifically business blogs.

A blog, short for weblog, is a website in which journal like entries called posts are written on an ongoing basis and displayed in reverse chronological order. New posts appear at the homepage so visitors can read what is new. It is an easy, frequently updated online journal, focused around a topic, industry or personality. Authoring a blog or adding an article to a blog is called blogging while the person who posts these entries is known as a blogger. Typically, a blog is composed of hypertext, images and links to other web pages, audio, video and other files. A distinct feature of a blog is that it allows readers to write their reactions or comments to what was written in the blog post. He or she just types his entry into a simple online form and the entry is readily available on the web for worldwide readers to see.

Over the years, blogs have evolved from simple, personal online journals to effective tools for augmenting business communications. Along the way, search engines were displaying popular media blogs produced by journalists appearing above other search result rankings. Propelled by this discovery, companies started writing blogs to provide relevant information about their business to potential customers to visit their sites.

What is a Business Blog?

It is a blog about a business. It is an organized journal about a company’s products or services. A business blog provides specific news, statistics, product releases, and other relevant information related to the company to prospective customers starting a business blog. They also give potential customers enough reasons to visit a company’s website. Just imagine prospective clients visiting a company’s blog periodically without the company having to spend hefty amounts of money on advertising and promotion. As they say, give readers valuable pertinent information and they will come.

A business blog is best viewed as an addition to a website. If a company has a website, a business blog is just embedded in it. For small and medium sized businesses, business blogs help put a personal touch on an otherwise bland business site. A business blog can be an excellent marketing tool to support a main business, to provide value, build healthy relationships with potential clients and thus create personal brand and image.

Blogging as a Marketing Tool

Business blogging provides a way for companies and readers to meet on common ground and discuss ideas, products and services in the hopes of building an audience that can become customers. A business blog provides a cost-effective alternative to having a website. For small and medium sized business entrepreneurs without the time and the means to set up a website, business blogging offers an inexpensive tool to herald the company’s presence on the powerful Internet.

Business blogs provide SMBs with an avenue to share their expertise and knowledge with a bigger audience. Both online and offline small and medium sized businesses can use blogs to take their products and services to a wider audience increasing web traffic and boosting sales. The fact is business blogging is fast becoming a sustainable marketing strategy for any online marketer. There are numerous ways a business can benefit from a blog.

An effective business blog can help give a human face to a business. Blogs bring a personal dimension to the web. Blogs make business sites more personal. Since blogs are updated by individuals, the “voice” of the blogger will resonate through. This will assure potential customers that there are real people behind the blog engaging them in real conversations. Blogs can be opinionated, informative, at other times infused with humor thus eliciting better response from target audience.

A business blog if used productively can improve customer service. It provides instant customer feedback through comments. It allows one’s audience to comment on a post and create a dialogue with them. A blog can act as a question and answer forum. Customers can post questions and receive instant replies. An effective business blog functions as a central knowledge base of articles, tutorials, product development status, and other relevant product or service information. This is good customer service.

It also keeps an archive of older posts organized by date and categorized by topic. This gives the target audience easier access to information. With business blogs, it is also easy to add new information on a regular basis. Frequent updates in the form of fresh new posts mean visitors will have all the reasons to keep coming back thus building loyal readers – best potential clients.

A business blog can increase the chances of prospective clients to visit a company’s website. For a start, visitors can be redirected to the company’s main site through links and special offers. Use of relevant keywords and popular links to specific sales pages improve search engine ranking of both the business blog and the main website. Just like the main website, top search result rank equals traffic. With more and more people turning to the all-powerful internet to search for products and services, it is essential for small businesses to be easily crawled by search engines. Since search engines thrive on new content, they are going to index it fast.

Posting valuable content regularly on a business blog builds company credibility and creates sound business reputation. A business blog can help project a company as an expert in a chosen business area. Customers feel more comfortable transacting business with a reputable company.

A business blog can be an avenue to introduce company products or services. Ideally, a blog is not about selling. A blog can be used to mention new products or services and direct visitors to the company’s main website in the process generating more sales.

However, a business blog is not urgent but important for small and medium sized businesses. A business blog alone is not enough to market a company product or service. However, it is a good investment for start up businesses to have conversations with customers and prospective clients. Business blogging is an effective way to start conversing with visitors interested in ones products or services but it is in no way to be viewed as a stand alone strategy. Yes, business blogging can do wonders. But it is not going to work on its own. It is most effective when used in conjunction with social media and other online tools.

Setting up and maintaining a great business blog that visitors will find useful and relevant is just like having an effective built-in public relations staff that will spread the word about the business.

As a final thought, starting a business blog is easy but transforming it into a marketing tool that drives traffic and sales to a business takes time, dedication and consistency. After all, Rome was not built in a day.

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18 Responses to Understanding Business Blogs

  1. Lesly Federici November 20, 2014 at 1:06 pm #

    Hi Miriam,
    Oh I think it is so necessary to have a blog these days .. look at what’s happening with mobile devices. The statistics are off the chart! So you have to have a blog or else potential customers will not find you if you’re using a cell phone for shopping, research, etc. .. excellent discussion and I hope many read this..
    Lesly Federici recently posted..Community Marketing

    • Miriam November 20, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

      So true and this is why I stress to my clients they NEED a blog, it’s not even an option anymore otherwise. Thanks for commenting Lesly.

  2. donna merrill November 20, 2014 at 9:03 pm #

    Hi Miriam,

    Wonderful description of a business blog! We all need them if we want to have any kind of business.

    It must have content that our readers can benefit from. Then we start having relationships with our readers, answering their comments, going to their blogs and reciprocating. After a while our blogs can become our own “Google” if done correctly.

    When we want to market something, there it is on our side bar. And we can also embed our offer in one of our posts but always following the 80/20 rule of 80% good content and 20% Sales.

    Even if we are doing a marketing campaign to a target audience we don’t know, they will come and check us out on our blog….happens to me all the time lol.

    -Donna
    donna merrill recently posted..15 Reasons Why Blogging Sucks

    • Miriam November 20, 2014 at 9:51 pm #

      Yes and the fact it happens to you all the time is validation of that, thanks for commenting 🙂

  3. Joan Harrington November 21, 2014 at 5:41 am #

    Hi Miriam,
    Awesome post! Blogging is a fantastic way to share your value to the world…….and very important as a business to share your expertise . Very inspiring and 100% agree with all of your tips 🙂
    Joan Harrington recently posted..Want A Blog That’s Thriving Not Just Barely Surviving?

  4. Sue Bride November 23, 2014 at 2:26 am #

    It still surprises me how many small businesses, especially trades people, don’t have their own websites at all, let alone blogs. Maybe they think it will be expensive but it can really be cheap, especially using WordPress which is free.

    If I search for a local business in directories I always choose those that have websites so I can find out more.

    Many only have Facebook Pages and while they are useful their real use comes when attached to a blog.
    Sue Bride recently posted..Team Site Traffic Installation

    • Miriam November 26, 2014 at 9:17 pm #

      Yes Sue, it can be free, I realize a lot of people are on a tight budget so in that case they can create a free blog. There is really never an excuse not to blog.

  5. Andy Lockhart November 23, 2014 at 7:22 am #

    Great description of what a business blog is. All business need them and it is the only way to keep a web site fresh so they are going to get found.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Andy
    Andy Lockhart recently posted..3 Social Media Tools For Content Curation

  6. Monna Ellithorpe November 23, 2014 at 3:53 pm #

    Hi Miriam,

    Great information. I still hear so many people online stated, “You don’t need a blog.” Just another area of poor advice given to new people who do not yet realize how important it is to their business to be seen online and even with mobile devices..

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge.
    Monna Ellithorpe recently posted..5 Valuable Lessons NaNoWriMo Taught Me

    • Miriam November 26, 2014 at 9:16 pm #

      Agreed Monna, you absolutely need one!

  7. Marquita Herald November 25, 2014 at 12:24 pm #

    It’s ironic that after 4 years of blogging it’s hard to imagine that there is anyone left in the world that doesn’t know what a blog is or how it can benefit a business, but of course that isn’t the case at all. In fact a couple of months ago I was chatting with my (adult) niece about how how much I enjoy her writing and posts on Facebook and asked her if she’d ever considered having her own blog – she said she wouldn’t even know where to begin. So yep, there are still plenty of people who can really use this kind of basic information. Thanks!
    Marquita Herald recently posted..Stop Waiting and Start Asking for What You Want From Life

    • Miriam November 26, 2014 at 9:16 pm #

      Hi Marquita, yes, a lot of people really are not familiar with it, even though blogs have been around since the 90’s!

  8. Jacs Henderson November 30, 2014 at 7:48 pm #

    Great post Miriam… I agree, having a blog attached to a Business website is the way to go.

    I think it brings a sense of community to the business, as a place to share and interact with it’s customers, by the post content and also side bar information… and the email opt-in!!

    Jacs
    Jacs Henderson recently posted..Create Fantastic Easy Peasy Quote and Message Images With Share As Image!!

    • Miriam December 1, 2014 at 3:52 am #

      Absolutely and thanks Jacs, a business website is not going to be noticed without a blog!

  9. Christine Adindu December 1, 2014 at 11:07 pm #

    Thank you for sharing this information about business blog. Having a blog have become a norm… everyone needs one.

    • Miriam December 2, 2014 at 12:25 am #

      It is crucial and agreed, thanks for commenting Christine.

  10. David Merrill 101 December 14, 2014 at 2:04 am #

    A business blog certainly is essential these days, Miriam.

    The challenge is to make it truly engaging,so that your customers and clients connect with “you”. Remember, the reason they visit your blog is not to learn about your business, but to connect with you on a deeper level.

    Encourage them to be responsive. Invite them to be part of what you are doing.

    There is a clear strategy that underlies business blogging… Create some buzz and rapport, and your business blog will go a long way to enhancing your overall business goals.
    David Merrill 101 recently posted..How To Get A Job

    • Miriam December 17, 2014 at 5:44 pm #

      Agreed David, business owners cannot just write blog posts about only their business. The post do need to be niche related but engaging, that is the only way they will get those subscribing to their RSS feeds.

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