A blog, short for the word weblog, is defined as a website containing a writer’s or group of writers’ own experiences, observations or opinions on a given topic. Once thought of as a medium reserved for fashion trendsetters or video gamers, blogging has more recently become a sales tool, and a very effective one at that.
It’s safe to say that nearly every purchase is impacted by a blog of some sort. In fact, I’d be willing to bet that the last purchase you made was influenced by a blog post or even multiple posts. Because more and more of our purchasing happens online, consumers are able to surf the web for customer reviews and consumer reports before clicking “buy,” making blogging a powerful sales tool.
So instead of relying on your current customers to leave a positive review on your ecommerce site or a testimonial on your website to attract and convert potential clients into sales, why not take the blogging into your own hands? Content marketing is all the rage right now and blogging may be one of the last great and FREE ways to generate content, which can play a big part in defining your brand.
Getting started is easy – just start typing! The beautiful thing about blogging is that the content is very informal, usually written in first person, and can be as short as this article. But, what should you write?
A produce farmer, for example, might write about the health benefits of eating avocados at every meal and throw in their favorite recipe at the bottom, instead of posting an ad for 10 percent off avocados. If you are in office furniture sales, tell your readers why it’s important to have a desk chair that supports correct posture – comfortable people are happy people and happy people are productive! In a not-so-sexy industry? An accounting firm might write about the top three deductions missed when a business owner fills out their returns (of course, this is best published before April 15). Suffering from writer’s block? Share a fun fact about your business that many wouldn’t know or a personal experience that taught you a lesson and will impact your future buying habits.
In short, blogging is a great way to establish yourself as an industry expert and a trusted source when it comes to the products or services you are selling, which does have an impact on your bottom line. While I may not be in the market for chemical-free cleaning products, after I read an article about the health implications some traditional household cleaners have on pets and young children, I might be more inclined to purchase this new product. And, I will feel empowered and informed on this topic and will likely tell a friend or two, which leads to even more sales.
So rethink your online sales strategy and give blogging a try. And, if you belong to the Columbus Chamber of Commerce, send us your blog post. We would be more than happy to redistribute your content!
— The Columbus Chamber of Commerce provides access to the connections, resources and solutions you need to help start and grow your business. Learn more about the Chamber at columbus.org. —