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Friday, 31 May 2013

6 Good reasons to have a blog

My blog is relatively new. I'm still finding my way, much like the 100 million other bloggers who have created web log's in the last decade - but week by week I feel compelled to share whatever's going on in my world, regardless of readership.

There's a therapy to writing a blog, like filling a journal, but now it seems that blogs have become a rather influential part of the marketing mix, so not quite the self-less act they once were.

Technorati, recently published their 2013 Digital Influence report . It's free and well worth a download. It shows that blogs consistently rank higher than LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google+ and Twitter, as trusted resources and additionally outstrip the most obvious social media, when it comes to sharing and influencing purchase decisions.

For those of you who haven't joined the party yet, (you know who you are), here are a few reasons why blogging is such a great resource.

1. It's practically free

Log onto wordpress or blogger or tumblr and have something up and running in your lunchtime. The only long-term cost is your time. Blogs need love and attention to keep them alive, so decide how much time you can regularly give to updating one at the outset.

2. Your blog is always on

Want to respond to a breaking news item? Need to update your audience on behind the scenes footage as an event unfolds? Your blog is just the place. While most marketing takes time to develop and implement, your blog gives you immediate access to readers eager to hear what you have to say and perhaps more importantly gives your audience a chance to reply, assuming you have a comments section. It's all about engagement.

3. Links online and offline marketing

Talk about your plans and products, invite feedback, test ideas, showcase results. Your blog is the perfect bridge between on and offline marketing activities, engaging with your audience and inviting feedback. Use your blog to explain how your firm came into being, outline product features and benefits, post case studies, discuss your vision. Blogging makes your business a person and everybody knows that people buy from people ........

4. Demonstrate knowledge

Your blog let's you drill down into a topic that is only partially covered on your website, likewise it can showcase your point of view and your understanding of the market. Since blogs are personal opinions, they're the ideal tool to demonstrate your knowledge and show some personality at the same time.

5. Builds brand visibility

People share blog posts. You only have to look at Twitter or Facebook for evidence. Creating valuable content on your blog builds brand visibility that far outweighs what can be achieved through a website. There's something about the accountability of a blog post that makes it far more believable than if the same message had come via your website.

6. Boosts SEO success

OK, this last one is only really true if you remember to include keywords in your posts, but nonetheless, search engine optimisation needs all the help it can get and blogging is a great way to create additional keyword rich text, which all contributes to getting you found online.

Since we all love sharing our stories, blogging seems here to stay.  Yet, for every ying there is a yang, so I thought I'd end with the flip side in the form of a catchy little number called "I hate your blog".  There's two sides to every story.

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