Blogging

7 Smart Tips For New Business Blog Owners

Did you recently launch a blog to promote your small business? If so, below we outline several strategies to help you turn that blog into a customer raving, information packed, lead generating, sales producing machine.

The trick is to know from the outset what you want your business blog to achieve, as this will facilitate the step by step action plan needed to get you there. Whether you seek leads, sales, readers, email subscribers, etc – below are seven blogging tips for new business blog owners to get started in the right direction

1. Design A Cohesive Look

Try and mirror the look and feel of your blog to that of your offline motif. If you have a logo, incorporate it into the theme of your overall blog design. If you have certain colors that identify your brand, be sure to place these on your blog site. You can hire a freelance designer on marketplaces like eLance or ask your social network for a referral. If you’re using WordPress, have a custom theme designed or a ready-made one altered to match your offline look and feel. Don’t underestimate your brands power to drive online traffic and readers.

2. Decide on Content Topics

Next up on your list once your design is nailed is to create a plan for content. This can be as simple as deciding that you will update the blog once daily, once weekly or some other regular schedule. It could mean deciding who will write the articles, or it could mean what specific topics you plan to cover. Want some examples? Try thinking of what your target buyer seeks in terms of information and formulate content that answers questions or paints a picture. And don’t forget to include multi-media content such as videos, audio, podcasts, digital PDF reports and mobile accessible content. The more variety the better.

3. Video Is Your Friend

Online readers love to watch video as evidenced by the explosive growth of video sites such as YouTube. Not only that, but Google the biggest and best search engine on the web, gives good credence to online videos. Now when a search is done, depending on the term, you will most likely get served up a video along with traditional text only results.

As a small business owner, there are a tremendous amount of ways to use and include videos as part of your content marketing strategy. For example, a video showcasing a fun company event is a way to let customers “inside” your business. Keep in mind, that you can’t go wrong with humor, find a way to use humor in your blog and or social media campaigns. People love to laugh.

4. Network

In the blog world, you can’t be an island. By definition a blog is collaborative and this is what makes it stand out from traditional publishing. There’s dialogue and feedback, which is what you will have once you’ve established yourself in your respective niche.

You do this by aligning yourself with other blog owners and joining their social networks, try to find them via blog directories, Twitter, Facebook, Google searches and or word of mouth. Ask established bloggers to point you in the direction of those who would be a good match for you to network with.

5. Share

This piggybacks from point four above on networking. Once you’ve found 10 to 20 blog owners to network with, you now will want to share freely Share their content, spread it around via tweets on Twitter, status updates on Facebook and or linking to it from your own blog.

For example, let’s say you own a travel business and now have a travel blog – from your network you spot an article on how one blogger thinks living abroad in South America is an easy and inexpensive way to live the good life. But you feel differently about this topic. You now have a golden opportunity to state your case (via a blog post) and use the South America article as inspiration for your piece. The trick is to link to the other blog and let him or her know you’ve got a response to the article on your site. This is how the blog world works, we feed off each other.

6. Hire Or Outsource For Growth

As a small business owner, your time is limited and as such so is your time to blog and or do social media online. But once you’ve got a basic handle what a business blog is and what it can do for you. You can hire someone or outsource a part of the tasks involved in getting the blog off the ground and or growing it. But it’s essential that you take the time (initially) to learn the ins and outs of it, so that you can competently hire someone to take over. If not, you will be lost and so will your hired person. As for where to look to outsource, try eLance, Fiverr.com or ask around.

7. Patience Is A Virtue

Creating, managing and growing a blog is hard work and time consuming. It’s not a “set it and forget it” type of effort. It requires good old fashioned elbow grease along with some smart but simple strategies and lots of networking. But it will not happen overnight, it will take some time to get it going. How long depends on your efforts and overall action plan. Keep at it, don’t give up. You can (as many already have) create a go-to resource online in your niche in the form of a blog for your small business.

Keep these tips in mind and you’ll be half way there

Let me know below in the comments area – how you plan to get your business blog off the ground, what questions you have and what you hope to accomplish?

 7 Smart Tips For New Business Blog Owners

Missy Diaz

Missy Diaz blogs for Smarta, a new support platform for business owners and entrepreneurs providing a one-stop-shop where business owners can connect, learn and actually *do* business.
 7 Smart Tips For New Business Blog Owners

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13 thoughts on “7 Smart Tips For New Business Blog Owners

  1. I’m happy to see this article on tips for business owners. Most of the blogging tips articles I come across seems to be about “How To Make Money Blogging” or “How to sell affiliate products”

    Nice to see we aren’t forgetting about the bricks and mortar folks. They need love too! :-p

    Unfortunately I do come across a lot of business blogs that kind of “set it and forget it” which of course isn’t really effective. 

    Hopefully this article will inspire some of those folks.

    1. Hey, Gerald:

      I recently read that small business owners do not have a presence online. And I’m truly surprised as I swear I read an article like that – close to a year ago if not longer. Yet the stats haven’t changed. Small business owners STILL are not online.

      But I do think that will be changing soon and so I’m creating and directing articles their way, to help.

      I know several small business owners (mainly in my family) who are slowly but surely hopping on the online bandwagon. Slowly!

    2. Hey, Gerald:

      I recently read that small business owners do not have a presence online. And I’m truly surprised as I swear I read an article like that – close to a year ago if not longer. Yet the stats haven’t changed. Small business owners STILL are not online.

      But I do think that will be changing soon and so I’m creating and directing articles their way, to help.

      I know several small business owners (mainly in my family) who are slowly but surely hopping on the online bandwagon. Slowly!

  2. In trick #1, would you recommend that the blog take the look of the regular website so that it is seamless between both? – background image, header, footer, etc. 
    Or should it have a look/layout of its own? – of course incorporating the logo and some of the color scheme if that is an important part of the branding. 

    1. Hi, Giovanni:

      I would try to keep it related and seamless. This way the reader and or visitor identifies the blog with your brand. It should all meld together, as it helps with association.

      Make sense?

  3. Great post. A lot of posts nowadays concentrate on just professional blogging, and corporate blogs are a little different. I agree with the fact that design should correlate with that of your site for branding purposes, and also that outsourcing some posts could be great if you are short on time. One thing I have seen happen, however; is when owner outsources the work to someone and completely forgets about it. That is when things start going wrong: posts stop coming, posts diverge from site topic etc.We have fairly big client that delegated social and blogging activity to someone in the company and was under impression they are posting every week, when in fact they have not posted since LAST YEAR!  So I would say : Outsource but still come in and do a post once a week or so, and  check on what is happening on your blog.

  4. All of these are great points Missy. In
    particular, designing a cohesive look. Nothing turns me away faster then a site
    that’s disheveled and makes me spend more than 5 seconds to figure
    out who they are and what their MO is.

     

    Second, video is quickly becoming one of
    the most prominent means of getting your product to the masses. It may take a
    little to time create one that looks great but the dividends are plentiful and
    the search engines love them!

     

    Another is networking. This is a big
    one. Too often, most of the people I talk to overlook this critical piece of
    their business. As the saying goes, it’s often not what you know but whom you
    know. You can also meet some really awesome people in your niche and learn tons
    from their successes and failures.

     

    A final item that I would suggest adding to this
    list: Choose Your Keywords Wisely. Before you write your post, you need to
    determine what keyword phrases are likely to bring in relevant traffic. Use
    your keyword(s) in the title tag, in the body of your post, in the meta tags
    (description) and use internal linking when possible. Deny this critical step,
    and the posts you’ve poured so much of yourself into, may go unnoticed by the
    web bots and your intended audience! Cheers!!

  5.  I think a lot of new businesses find time management an issue. Needing to spend time on their core business, finding more time to liase with a designer to create their online presence seems daunting..

  6. One more thing to add is if you want to become an established blog owner try writing about something new or which has been hardly written about related to your niche. But make sure it’s interesting enough so that people would read it.