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- from the desk of Ian Christie
CEO & Executive Career Coach
Blogging for Business
The marketing of your coaching and consulting services is almost all about marketing yourself. When someone buys your coaching or consulting services they are buying you - your skills, talents, knowledge, experience and interests.
Therefore, among the strategies coaches and consultants can employ to market themselves, establishing credibility and developing a relationship with your target audience should be high on the list.
You need to be aware of a new online technology that has literally caught on like wildfire over the last year and looks to have a permanent place in the marketing arsenal. I am speaking of blogs and blogging.
What are Blogs?
At a basic level, blogs are a form of web site where the author(s) write and post content frequently - weekly, daily, or for some, many times a day. A blogging tool facilitates the ease of publishing and managing content.
How You Could Use A Blog?
As an add-on to your existing site, a separate site, or even a replacement for your existing site
To complement or replace your existing writing and publishing efforts
Focus around a specific niche or interest, as a more intimate window to you, or general purpose
To post long articles, short articles, 2-line posts, personal journal entries, resource lists, quick commentary and links to interesting sites / people / articles / news that you have found and think are of interest to your readers,
To post photos and audio clips, recommended reading or listening lists
6 Reasons Why You Should Consider A Blog
1. Ease of Online Publishing & Content Management
It seems easy. Write an article. Put it in your newsletter, and maybe on your site. But when you make your article archives available, and get 5, 10, 20 of them live, links start to change and the whole things gets unwieldy quickly.
Writing and publishing articles in your blog is as simple as entering the text and pushing the submit button. Voila. You have a categorized, catalogued page. Because the column, header and other elements of your page are separate templates, any changes you want to make over time will be reflected across your content.
Blogs also offer great content management features. For example, when you set-up your blog, you create keyword based categories for the topics you will write about. Every time you post, you select which categories your post applies to, and from then on, your posts is catalogued by category and date.
Bonus Benefit: If it is easy to publish and maintain, you will write more!
2. An Effective Way of Attracting New Visitors to You
Google and other search engines love fresh, keyword specific content. It turns out, therefore, that blog posts are like catnip for search engines, delivering visitors with specific search terms to your specific article posts. Visitors who come to you throught the “side-door” are often pre-qualified prospects, because your site had what they were looking for.
3. Establish Credibility, Allow your Readers to Get to Know You, and Keep them Engaged
By their very nature, blogs are an informal means of communication with your reader. You have the means and flexibility to communicate as you wish with your readers and they get to know you better. You can easily establish yourself as an expert in your chosen area. You can surprise your readers with resources and keep them coming back for more.
Blogs also offer a commenting feature, meaning that readers can write comments about your posts. Those comments, if you choose, can be visible to other readers, in effect, creating an article-specific dialogue on your site.
4. Reach More Readers More Often
First, with blogging tools, come a content syndication capability. Readers can “subscribe” to your content and receive “news feeds.” Every time you post on your blog, all those people who have subscribed to your news feed will automatically see what your fresh content is.
Second, they do this through another new form of software called newsreaders. You don’t need newsreaders to visit and explore blogs. If you do have a newsreader, you can subscribe to a blog, and in your newsreader, see a preview of that content. If you like the subject, click on the link to be taken to the site.
Third, with the deliverability of email getting less and less sure, content syndication is fast becoming seen by the experts as the new way that online publishers (that means you) can reach their audiences.
5. Build Networks
Blogs allow, and encourage a high degree of linking between sites, other blogs, and individual posts. You can use this feature to show your readers what is of interest to you, find new sources of support, create alliances with complimentary bloggers, and expand your area of influence.
6. Build Your Profile
The vast majority of blog sites spend a lot of time referring to other blogs. If blog owners like your content, they will refer to it, link to and recommend you.
If you’ve decided that blogging is a fit with you and your business or you are curious and want to learn more, here are the basic steps:
Surf to see the range of options and tools available
Make decisions about how it will fit within your business and your existing web site, and what you will focus on.
Research and choose your blogging tool.
Set it up. In addition to style, you will want to identify the keywords for your business, and therefore subject categories to focus on.
Write. And Write.
Publicize and cross-link.
Of course, blogging may not fit you or your business. At a minimum, you may now start to find and recognize other blog sites as a wonderful resource.
Personal assistance integrating a blog into your marketing mix is available to my Solopreneur’s Gym customers.
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