Published on July 1st, 2013 | by Genelia L.0
Business Blog Benefits: Why Your Company Needs One
Once upon a time, not so long ago, the measures of a business were rather different than what they are today. It was necessary to have a business card, detailing your business address, your phone number, and if you were extra fancy, a different number for your fax (sparing your from answering the phone to an electronic screeching in your ear indicating that someone was attempting to fax you). Then, of course, the Internet came along and changed everything, and no business worth its salt could do without a website, and an array of email addresses, depending on which aspect of operations the emailer was attempting to enquire about. While the concept of the blog has been around since the infancy of the Internet, it’s still a tool that’s utilized by a variety of businesses, both large and small, and rightfully so. A blog is a method of imparting valuable information about the company and its related areas, in a way that can be formal or personable, as the situation might dictate. So what are some of the real benefits of maintaining a blog for your company?
The Personality of Your Company
One of the key benefits of blogging is that it can be constructed using a personal voice, which can assist in the branding of your company. A blog is usually written to a specific audience, and it allows you to engage with your audience in a more involved way than traditional marketing. Of course, a blog is hardly spontaneous, and each entry can be carefully crafted to emphasize a specific product or service, or even something like a particular company trait that you want to impart upon your customers. Since the blog can exist as a voice of your company, consistency is important, so if a number of people are writing the blog, then it’s important that they liaise with each other to ensure that the writing is of a comparable standard, or you could even produce a blog style guide specifically for your company.
Interaction: Positive and Negative
Opening a blog up for comments can be a blessing and a curse, but it certainly allows for greater interactions with your audience. Anything that encourages debate is usually a good thing, but remember that the anonymity of the Internet allows for a great deal of negativity, and if a consumer is displeased with your product or service, or the content of a blog, then they could well be forthcoming in letting you (and other readers of the blog) know. You don’t necessarily have an obligation to display negative feedback in such an accessible forum, and since the blog exists as a marketing tool, being too “open” can actually be detrimental. Consider moderating comments prior to them appearing online. While this can be time consuming, it allows you to filter anything overly negative or even abusive, while still drawing your attention to the criticism and allowing you to address any shortcomings in your operation that may have led to the negative comments.
A good blog should be maintained as part of an integrated effort with all social media and online marketing efforts. Since the construction of a well-written blog can be far more time consuming than other forms of marketing, it needs to justify its existence. There’s no point in having a company blog if it’s buried in the depths of your website and isn’t easily accessible. A blog should be highlighted using your company’s Facebook and Twitter presence, thus drawing web traffic via these mediums. Naturally, any visitor to your blog should be encouraged to sign up for updates, meaning that your blog also exists as a newsletter. This can be highly encouraging, as over time, a substantial list of subscribers can grow, and so you know that people will actually be reading the blog, rather than just the futile feeling of writing for an audience who might never discover your writings in the vast reaches of cyberspace.
This is a guest post by Marianne Ross, a freelance writer, who shares her business tips on various blogs.