A little flavour of what's in store...

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Why Blog? A guide for businesses

If you're a business that has an online presence, then sooner or later you're going to want to Blog. It may be that you're forced to Blog rather than want to but why put off the inevitable?

If you feel your business is being forced into blogging, then don't approach it with a heavy heart – this will come across in your writing and topics and your business will gain little from any exposure, which will be difficult enough to attract if you neglect your Blog.

Why Blog? Well there are several, already well written about reasons and i'm not going to go into details here at the risk of making this entry to big and unreadable. Basically, you'll Blog to inform of your new products, new services even new staff. You'll remind people of where you are, what you do and how that can benefit them. You'll entertain and enlighten through topic and non-topic articles, testimonials and contributions from other staff members.

And the result of all this blogging is a hoped for audience that will spread your word still further attracting new readers and hopefully a few new customers along the way also. You'll also benefit from the increased exposure giving your website better ranking and so moving it up the organic search results (which means hopefully, more people will find you) and you'll be able to spread word of new products, developments or news that much quicker to your audience through the use of an RSS Feed that directs people back to your Blog.

Because its so much easier to update a Blog, than pay a web designer every time you want to update your 'news page' on your website, you'll make your company appear more up to date and commercially aware. How good is that?

If you are already converted to the idea of blogging then now is the perfect time to start. Create an account on Google and use their ready to go Blog publishing program or explore others available – weigh up what each has to offer and decide yourself what features fit your specific needs the most.

Then you can start posting.

But don't forget that posting is only the start. You'll need to get your Blog out there in the 'blog-o-sphere” to get really noticed.

How? I hear you ask? - there are a number of Blog directories you can submit your blog to.

Remember to check out each one and decide which best suit your purposes. Some have their own communities and 'neighbours' facilities so providing a ready made blog community.

Use sites like Technorati and DIGG to get your articles noticed and add social bookmarking elements to both your Blog and individual posts to help get them noticed.

Don't expect instant results and don't be put off by some saying “you must post at least twice a day” - the thing is there is no real time frame (although the more frequently you post, the more your Blog will appear fresh and inviting). Post when you've got something to say – think carefully about each and every post – what are you trying to say, what are you hoping to achieve etc and if you're really struggling for ideas, then if you come across another article you find helpful, write a brief intro and link to that. You'll be amazed at just how quickly you'll get links back to your articles.

Jonathan Crouch

About the author: Jonathan is webmaster and all round I.T. guru for Fabulous Photo Gifts - online personalised photo gifts. In addition to posting for 'Photo Gifts, he also writes a number of SEO articles aimed specifically at small businesses who may not have the resources to out-source their web requirements.

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