Most of the really popular websites out there right now are, you guessed it: Blogs. With sites like Open Forum snatching up a good deal of the internet’s traffic, a lot of small business owners are asking the question of whether they should get in the game before it’s too late.
The good news is that there doesn’t appear to be a “too late” anywhere on the horizon – blogging as an industry and social networking tactic is still on the strong upswing. It’s an excellent way to increase brand awareness, strengthen your main site’s SEO, and most importantly bridge the gap between yourselves and prospective clients.
That’s a strong list of benefits to be sure, but it doesn’t mean that every small business is in the right position to begin their blogging career. Here are a few signs that might mean you aren’t ready to enter the blogosphere quite yet.
You want results, and you want them now
Patience is an important part of blogging, especially during the early stages. More specifically, you have to trust in the content itself to deliver results in the long run. If you take steps to perform proper keyword research and implement it effectively, you can see a quick traffic boost, but it will be awhile before the actual sales come in from your blog. Sometimes the blog is a hit but you still can’t pinpoint any specific sale that came out of it. The goal isn’t to use your blog for direct lead generation, but to use it as a platform to build your reputation in the industry.
You only want to sell, sell, sell
The fact stands: Content is the most important aspect of a successful blog. People read blogs for informative content, not a long string of sales pitches and product releases. If you only try to promote your business through the blog, you’ll see a trickle of traffic at best; at worst you’ll fall right off the radar and never be heard from again. People don’t want to read about your company all the time – that’s what your online store is for. You have to be able to focus on what your audience wants in a blog, not what you wish they wanted.
You have trouble relinquishing control
If every single post has to be reviewed and evaluated by you directly, you’re going to have a hard time building a smooth flow for the blog posts. To really see benefits from content marketing, you have to be able to give up some of the control and just let your writers do what they do best. This ties in with the last point: You’ll often post content that you feel is useless because it doesn’t deliver a sales pitch, and you’re more likely to shoot that down if you are fully entwined in the blogging process. Just let it go and trust your people to do what they feel is right.
You refuse to link to your competitors
This is an iffy one, but it definitely bears mentioning. From time to time, you will have to link over to your competitors and show some love for something that they provided. It’s important to show your readers that you respect the competition, but it also comes down to SEO. Google likes to see links to authority domains, plain and simple. This will also give you a boost as an open minded thought leader in your industry.
Of course, if none of these apply to you it might be high time you set up a blog and ran with it. From there you can decide whether you want to write the content yourself or hire a freelance blog writer.
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