If you’ve ever taken one of my classes or heard me speak, you’ve probably hear me say this:

Blogging is one of the best things you can do for your business.

While most people think blogging is just about what you ate yesterday or how cute your baby is, there’s a lot more to it for business.  A lot more.

Beyond the Brochure

By now I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase Content is King more than once.  It’s definitely true – creating new content on a consistent basis is one of the best ways to gain the search engines’ attention.  And attention turns into ranking.  And ranking turns into customers.

But let’s be frank – your website probably sucks.  It’s a boring brochure, laden with the must-have’s such as an About Us page, a contact form, and of course a list of products or services.

Boring, unremarkable and unoriginal.

But this is where most businesses are.  Why? Business owners have a website simply because their competitors have a website.  It’s not looked upon as a marketing tool, a lead generation tool, heck it’s not even mentioned in their advertising or listed on their business cards.

It’s a brochure and that’s all.

You’re the Expert

But what you should realize is that blogging software is simply an extension of your website – a very easy publishing tool that lets you add new content by simply typing in your thoughts and pushing the Publish button.  Done. Out there. Online.

Do you want to start ranking for keywords in your industry? Start blogging about topics related to them.  You are in business because you are an expert at what you do.  And as an expert, you’ll naturally use these keywords when you explain your products or services.  You’ll listen to your customers, you’ll answer their questions, and you’ll be the expert (in their eyes).  Sure, there may be twenty people within twenty miles that could answer that question, but you’re the only one online answering it, so you’re the expert.

People will drive to buy from experts.  They’ll pass up five stores that sell your item just to buy from you.

Crashing Waterbeds and Money in the Bank

STLBeds is, by definition, supposed to be out of business.  They’re a simple Dad-and-son business, selling mattresses to people in their surrounding area.  Dave, the owner, has been doing it since 1986, jumping onto the waterbed craze in the 80’s and riding it for many years.  But now, well, not so many people want waterbeds.  Over the years they added bedroom furniture and ‘regular’ mattresses, but sales were declining.  They couldn’t compete with big box stores and were watching their numbers decrease every day.

In 2007, Dave’s son Doug wanted to learn a little more about getting the business online, so he took a local class on HTML and followed it up with an online marketing class.  Soon he was talking to his dad about starting an SEO campaign.  In November 2007 STLBeds launched a new SEO-friendly website, and Doug started blogging about everything related to mattresses, furniture and life as a salesman.

In January of 2008, Doug wrote an article called Will a Waterbed Crash Through my Floor? and he hit a home run.  He didn’t know at the time, but a lot of people were leery of purchasing a heavy waterbed and they were looking online for ways to remedy their problem.  Doug’s blog ranked right at the top, and thousands of visitors later, Doug is banking.

Problems are Gold

Doug did something that you can do, too.  Find a typical problem with your industry, product or service and take it head on.  Be honest, open and frank about the problem, and offer a solution.  People will – once again – think you’re an expert on the issue.  And they’ll trust you.  And they’ll buy from you.

What do people always ask you?  Are there stereotypes about what you do that make people nervous when they buy?  Are there typical objections to every sales pitch that you can debunk on your site?  These shouldn’t be avoided – they should be tackled.

By the Way, We Sell That

Lastly, don’t be afraid to mention in your blog posts that you sell the item you’re blogging about.  I recommend not being outright salesy, but there’s nothing wrong with saying “here’s the problem, we have the solution”.  Link back to your item or service in your post.

Build your internal links, build trust with your readers, and build your bank account.  I see nothing wrong with that.

2 Responses

  1. Great stuff Will — I love the idea of listening to customer questions, objections, etc and turning it into blog content for Google to index and return in their search results.

  2. It is true story. We have had great success with many other keywords and keyword phrases as well. Thanks for not giving all or our secrets away. 🙂 We simply use the questions our customers ask us, then we answer it by way of a blog. It couldn’t be easier. Yes it takes time, but I have more time than I do money and thanks to Business Blogging for Revenue STL Beds has more revenue.

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