The Real Reason Why Blogging is So Important
“I use my blog to educate my audience about my super awesome products so that they’re excited to buy them.”
“I write blog posts to improve the SEO for my business - the more posts with the right keywords, the more money in my pocket.”
“My blog is on a long list of all of the things I should be doing for my business but that I never do because there are more important things that need my attention.”
“I occasionally post a blog when I have news to share about my business, like a new product, an event appearance, etc.”
“Do people actually blog anymore? Seems outdated.”
These quotes are just a super small handful of the responses I’ve gotten when I ask business owners why and how they use their blog. And, while they’re all obviously valid, not one of them actually gets to the root of why businesses need to blog: connection.
Here’s what I said in response to each of these businesses:
“I use my blog to educate my audience about my super awesome products so that they’re excited to buy them.” That’s great! Your blog really does provide a huge opportunity to create value for your audience by educating them about what your business does. But, if all you’re doing on your blog is trying to find ways to “get the sale”, then you’re missing out - and leaving your audience feeling underwhelmed. By transforming your blog from a sales pitch to a conversation, you help your audience really get to know you. And, when they get to know you, they develop a connection - and that’s the real motivating factor behind almost every sale. Try adding content that educates your audience about WHO YOU ARE and WHY your business exists. Instead of thinking of your blog as a chance to stand on a stage and speak to your audience about your business, think of it as a small (but important) conversation at a party with a group of people. Shake their hands, look them in the eye, smile and tell them about yourself!
“I write blog posts to improve the SEO for my business - the more posts with the right keywords, the more money in my pocket.” Blog posts ARE great for SEO! It’s so important to understand what your audience is looking for and then to develop content that delivers what they’re needing. The problem, however, with only focusing on SEO is that you overlook another whole set of needs your audience has: CONNECTION. While your potential customer might not be Googling “Denver Newborn Photographer I Can Trust In My Home And Feel Confident About The Pictures I Get Of My Precious Baby Girl Harper,” that doesn’t mean that they’re not looking for it. When businesses only use their blog for SEO, people feel it right away. No matter how clever you are about the way you write your content, the agenda behind it will still be present. Does that mean you should throw SEO strategies out the window? Absolutely not. But, consider how much more you can share with your audience when you free yourself from the constraints of keywords and searched phrases. Mixing in some personal content shows your audience that you actually want to connect with them - not just show up on Page One.
“My blog is on a long list of all of the things I should be doing for my business but that I never do because there are more important things that need my attention.” Girl, I get it. Running a business is hard and, when you’re just starting out, there really are hundreds of important things that need your attention. But, don’t underestimate the power of content, especially the personal kind you can showcase on your blog. Even just one sincere post a week can help your audience get to know you better - and that’s a big deal. By showing your visitors WHO you really are, you help them let their guard down when they land on your website. For a lot of people, they are ready to not trust you simply because they don’t know you and because they’re bringing all of their baggage from past online experiences. If you want to help drive better (and bigger) conversions on your website, then don’t let your blog sit and go stale.
“I occasionally post a blog when I have news to share about my business, like a new product, an event appearance, etc.” Cool! But, let me ask you a question - how many websites that have blogs you love publish the same type of content? I’ll go out on a limb and guess that the answer is zero. Yes, it’s an easy way to keep your blog updated, but it’s not very interesting. You can convey the same information in a one-sentence update on social media, through a calendar, or even just compiling all of the biggest news in one “Monthly Update” type of post. That means, there’s so much more opportunity when it comes to the content on your blog! What if you used your blog to create a real connection with your audience? What if the content you published helped them to get to know you and your business better? If your audience was getting to know you through your blog, how much easier would it be to close the deal later on?
“Do people actually blog anymore? Seems outdated.” I totally get it. (But, yes, TONS of businesses, including Kim Kardashian, still blog and they continue to because it’s so important.) If, however, blogging isn’t your style or doesn’t align with your business vision, that doesn’t mean you should cross it off your list. Blogging really is just a type of content creation - and it’s effective because creating content is at the heart of all smart marketing. Of course, there are hundreds of ways to create content for your business: social media posts, videos, eBooks, podcasts, newsletters, emails, webinars, etc. Creating a content marketing strategy using the methods that make the most sense for you and your business is vital for your long-term success. Blogging, on the other hand, is totally optional.
At the heart of all of these responses is the importance of creating CONNECTION, because finding a way to share your story is SO vital to the health of your business. To steal a quote from the always brilliant Laura Belgray, “Every piece of copy you write is an opportunity to grab attention, share who you are, and connect with the right, eager-to-pay people.”
And “copy” applies to every single word you write - from the services you offer on your website to the caption under your #workfromhome Insta post, and, of course, your blog. With every word you write you have the opportunity to create connection, to help people know who you are, why your business exists, and why they should trust you. It doesn’t matter if you connect via Instagram story videos, a blog post, or perfectly scripted speeches - the bottom line is that you give your audience a chance to see that you are REAL.
(Because, let’s face it, knowing what’s real and what isn’t gets harder every damn day.)