You enjoy blogging. You’ve even got some loyal readers. But it doesn’t seem to be generating any business, and you can’t help wondering if it’s worth your time and effort.
Before you give up, ask yourself this:
How well does my blog convey how I can help my readers to solve their problems?
Be honest with yourself.
If your blog posts sound more like ads than articles, you’re missing the point of content marketing. You need to give your readers something of value so they’ll stick around long enough to get to know, like and trust you.
On the other hand, if you simply put yourself out there as a nice helpful person, your readers may assume that you’re simply an individual who is passionate about a certain topic, or perhaps a professional blogger. If you never mention your business, they may not even realize what services you offer.
The secret is to talk about your business in the context of a helpful article. Here are a few ways to do it effectively.
Write one post about each service you provide so that your ideal client will understand what it entails. Highlight the benefits it provides potential clients. Your posts should be short and to the point and focus on one specific topic at a time.
If you’ve created a buyer persona for your business, you understand the challenges which your ideal client is facing. Blog about these problems and mention your service as a solution. Show that you understand your target audience’s problems, fears, and concerns and that you know how to solve them, and your ideal client will naturally be drawn to you.
If you receive questions in your email, use those as blogging material. Or simply think about questions that your ideal client might ask you.
Case studies are great because they accomplish so many things at once. They attract readers, showcase clients, educate customers, and show off the benefits of using your business. A case study gives people concrete information they can use while showing the results that your business gets.
Client Success Stories
Similar to case studies, client success stories work as testimonials for your business. When a client thanks you or tells you how your business helped them, ask if they’d mind being featured on the blog. If they prefer, keep them anonymous. This is a great way to show directly what your business can do for people.
If your client is willing, interview them, then post the video or audio recording on your blog. Include a transcript of the interview for a double whammy and for folks who’d rather read than watch a video.
Seeing satisfied clients rave about your work and how you solved their problems can have a powerful effect.
How to Work with You
Educate your readers by blogging about what they can expect if they do business with you. Make it easy for them to make that initial call by addressing as many of their possible questions and concerns as you can.
Keep It Balanced
If you’ve been reluctant to blog too much about your business, try mixing one or more of the above topics in with your usual content.
If you’ve been blogging mainly about your business, make sure it’s done in one of the above contexts. A blog post should rarely be an outright ad, unless it’s to promote a special or other announcement.
Balancing your readers’ need for answers to their questions with your need to market your business will make a big impact on your blogging ROI. But be patient. Building relationships take time.
One last thing … you’re not done once your blog post has been published. Make sure it goes out to your email subscribers (you can set MailChimp and other services to do this automatically) and promote it across your social media accounts. Ask other people to share it and help you get the word out as well.
As the owner of Organized Assistant, Janet Barclay has been helping solopreneurs to maximize their online presence with her website design and content marketing services since 2003. She began blogging in 2006, and is a frequent speaker on blogging, social media, and other topics at local events and national conferences. Janet established the Golden Horseshoe Virtual Assistants Group in 2008 to provide face-to-face networking for local VAs. Her latest venture is Maximize Marketing Club, where she teaches effective marketing strategies to solopreneurs in a supportive online community.This article is a sample of the exclusive content available to members of Maximize Marketing Club, the online community facilitated by Janet Barclay. To learn more about marketing trends and tools for solopreneurs, sign up for Janet’s free Maximize Your Content Marketing eCourse.