Monday, 5 August 2013

Content Marketing - Why Blog?

The basis of content marketing is simple.  If you don't talk about it (as in online) you won't be listened to.  Hence we've all become content publishers in our own right, whether business or social.  So why blog?  Blogging is by no means as easy as using Facebook or Twitter (or LinkedIn etc) to communicate.  To blog you have to:

Come up with an idea you want to write about
Think of a headline that people are going to notice
Write your blog
Optimise your blog (hopefully)
Publish - not just on your blogging platform, but to other places on the web
And then do it all over again on a regular basis.

The first three above are the hardest, and the reason why many are put off by the idea of blogging, and yes there are those who still don't.  You can write a list of ideas to blog about, so that's not so hard, however thinking up a headline that is going to catch attention and worst of all WRITING - those are the most difficult.

The first time I had to write a piece (not a blog, but a column for a Conde Nast online magazine) putting pen to paper was the hardest thing.  Finding your voice and writing can be extremely daunting until you've had some practice but after all it's not exactly like getting up on stage in front of an audience.  You can start off quietly, read people's work that you like who write around your subject, show what you've written to some friends and ask for honest opinions. 

And practice, practice, practice.

The best way to find your own 'voice' is to get out there and do it.  Blogging has become part of content marketing for every online business and should be an essential part of it.  So the question 'why blog?' is an easy one to answer, because you can publish your blog post to so many places on the web, from your own website to your Facebook page, to Twitter and on.  You can link to your blog on Pinterest and get more readers that way, you can use it as a basis for your newsletters.  And if you're lucky one of your posts may go viral (for the right reasons hopefully) and bring you thousands of visitors.

For any online business out there who does not as yet have a blog I suggest that they get going right now.  Apart from anything else, blogging can be enjoyable, and put you in touch with so many more potential customers than you ever had before.  But don't just blog to sell.  Any more than you should just post to Facebook or Twitter to sell.  Blog to be useful, informative, friendly, helpful and interesting.  QED really...............

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