Starting a Blog for Your Company
Written by Amy Bax for Gaebler Ventures
Is your business blogging yet? If not, it may be time to take a serious look at blogging and what it can do for small business growth?
Many CEO's of large companies start blogs to inform and create communication with their current and potential customers.
If done correctly, blogs can be beneficial for a company of any size as an alternative way to reach out to current and potential customers.
What Is a Blog?
Blogs are published reflections and opinions from one or more persons from within the company. They are generally updated and somewhat informal. Starting a blog for your organization is an additional way to reach your business goals of reaching important target groups and strengthening relationships.
Blogs have become popular because they are a way of showing the personal side of the company. It can make you seem more relatable in hopes that people will respond positively. And because it creates another form of communication between company and customer, it is another opportunity to recruit new customers and create customer satisfaction.
What Benefits Are There to Blogging?
You are able to position you or your company as an industry expert. People will ask for and take your advice seriously as you comment on things going on in the industry, provide feedback for readers with questions, and provide tips.
It improves customer relations. You are giving your current customers yet another outlet to come to you for help with satisfying their needs. Also, by publishing personal reflections and comments, you are personalizing your business. People are able to connect a face or person to the product/business, which can set you apart from competitors.
Feedback can be beneficial. Since it is your target audience reading the blog, why not ask them for their opinions? It may help you with new product/service ideas, improve on what you already provide, and get a general idea on how to better satisfy your target customer. Information you get from comments and feedback could be just as beneficial as a costly focus group or survey campaign.
What to Watch Out for When Blogging
Keep it updated!
People will become disinterested if they spend the time to go to the blog and you don't take the time to update it. At the same time, do not overdo it with pages and pages of daily blogging. Most people will not have time to fully read and respond to what you have to say if they cannot take the time to read it. A paragraph or two revolving around one or two ideas is best.
Know that it is a two-way channel of communication and treat it that way.
Provide replies to comments in a timely manner, and do not pick and choose what you decide to respond to. This could make you lose credibility if you are trying to position yourself as an industry expert and a specialist in customer service if you refuse to answer inquiries on certain topics.
Make sure it is personable.
One main reason of starting a blog is to reveal who the people are behind the business. Boring and unattached will leave your current and potential customers uninterested and looking elsewhere. Also, no one will want to read a blog that only is there for obvious promotion of a specific product or service. Readers will catch on quickly that you are using it as an advertisement and not for conversation.
Keep it appropriate.
There needs to be a personal touch, but remember what is professional and what is not. This is especially important if it is a blog that several people contribute to. One outburst typed for the public can be detrimental to the company image. It is suggested that someone who is not a contributor read over the blog on a regular basis to monitor for these incidents.
Amy Bax is interested in providing innovative informational resources to entrepreneurs. She is currently an MBA student at the University of Missouri - Columbia.
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