Tuesday, September 30, 2008

    How to Use Blogging for Your Business

    Every single small business owner is an expert in their field. No matter what product or service  you provide, your customers do business with you because you are the expert in that  arena, and if you are not an expert, then they very quickly realize that and go  somewhere else. People trust experts, and when making a decision about a purchase, they look to  the expert to tell them what they need to know and to give them all of the information they need  to make an informed decision.

    For a small business owner who is just getting started, however, it may take some time and effort  to establish yourself as an expert in your field. You may know what you need to know,  you may have the information you need, you may do a superb job at what you do, but if your  potential customers do not know that and cannot see it, then why would they choose to do business  with you? You need to, essentially, place yourself out there in front of them and demonstrate  your expertise. You need to build your reputation as an expert in your specific area, which will  build the trust of your customers and potential customers.

    An excellent tool to use when establishing yourself as an expert is blogging. A blog is  essentially an online journal. You write about whatever you want, it's easy and simple to use,  and easy for people to read. This gives you a medium to communicate your expertise, as you can  blog about what you know about your product or service and provide useful information for your  readers.

    For example, if your business is selling salt-water fish and aquariums, then you would want to  set up a blog and write about the care of fish, how to set up an aquarium, what you will need to  get started, what kind of fish are good to start out with, what fish and creatures dwell together  well, and so on. Since your business is marine fish, you obviously know a lot about them and have  a lot of information to share, and you can do this in a fun and interesting way, and in whatever  style is you.

    Another example, if your business is a car repair service, then you would want to write about not  just car repair, but car maintenance, how to prevent common neglect and accidents, how to care  for your car after repair, how to choose a good mechanic and what to look for in a repair shop.  And the list can go on.

    Setting up a blog is easy and inexpensive. There are numerous websites where you can sign up for  free and create your own blog. They already have the tools that you need integrated into the  website, ready for you to use - you can start blogging almost immediately! You can add photos to  your blogs, you can allow readers to post comments, and most blogs have an option for your  readers to subscribe to receive new blog posts via email or rss feeds. Google has a blog service  that can be found at Another free one is at For other options,  just do a google search for "free blog" or similar keywords. These sites will give you your own  subdomain, such as, which links directly to your blog. You can then give  this url out to your friends, customers, and include it in your marketing materials to direct  people to your blog.

    If you are not sure what to write about, or are afraid you will run out of topics, try some of  these ideas:

    Keep a paper and pen handy with you in your purse, by the phone, on the dash of your car, in your  shirt pocket or wherever is convenient for you. As you go through the day doing business you may  get ideas for topics. Write these down as you get them, then when you go to blog, you will  already have a list of great topic ideas!

    Ask your readers what they would like to know about. Invite them to email you questions. Some  blog sites may have a tool where you can create a quick poll or a short survey. Use these to get  feedback and to find out what your customers are interested in knowing about your subject.

    Browse magazines on your subject. This may spark ideas and you may be able to build off what you  read about.

    Borrow from other experts. If you run across another blog, or website, or an article in a  magazine that you really like and would like to feature in your blog, then get permission from  the author and post the article on your blog. Most authors will be more than glad to let you use  their article as long as you provide their information and a link back to them.

    Use your own experience. Do you have some entertaining stories from your experience in this  field? Do not be afraid to throw in some fun and humor.

    Blogging does not have to be tedious and boring, or take up huge amounts of time. If you are not a  natural writer and feel like it's too much of a job to sit there and write a long post, then  don't! Keep it short and simple, or whatever is your style. Remember that it is your  blog, so let it reflect your personality.

    If you find you simply do not have any time at all to do your blog, then hire someone else to do  it. Perhaps you already have someone working for you who can take it on, or perhaps you know  someone who would be interested. You can give them your topic ideas, or even use a voice recorder  to record the posts for them to type out in the blog. Again, whatever works for you, your style  and your business!

    The world of blogging is a wonderful tool to use to keep in touch with your target customers and  to establish trust as an expert. If you take the time to start, you will find it well worth the  while and will learn a lot from it as well! You have information and expertise to share - a blog  is a great medium to use to get it out there!


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