[Average reading time – 3 minutes]
Small and medium sized businesses may be wondering “Is blogging still important in 2020?”
In some ways, when you compare to other digital marketing options, writing a blog seems a bit old school.
Shouldn’t businesses be hanging out on Insta or making short videos on Tik Tok?
But good old-fashioned conversation, face-to-face or online, is the key to winning customers and keeping them.
So, should small businesses be blogging?
The simple answer is yes.
Why Is Blogging Still Important in 2020?
Larger businesses have larger marketing budgets which gives them access to marketing channels that a small business cannot afford. Namely television, radio and mainstream newspaper/magazine advertising. These options can be extremely costly but of course they can be highly effective at reaching a huge audience. A 30 second TV ad run during the half-time break of England’s 2018 World Cup semi final game against Croatia cost around £400K. Huge brands such as Nike or Coca-Cola will pay massive sums for the opportunity of reaching 25m+ people in just 30 seconds.
Small businesses must take a cheaper, slower burn approach, naturally. And one of the most important things a business needs to do to get customers is gain their trust.
However, there are 5 other benefits that a small business can get from blogging to their audience.
Let’s explore these now.
Whilst blogging probably isn’t the best way of generating awareness of your product, service or brand, it can certainly help you to reach new potential customers. For your blog to be read by new people, its needs to have:
- an attention-grabbing title which makes it clear what benefit the reader will get from clicking
- valuable content which solves the readers problem or at the very least informs
- Optimisation for search engines so that it ranks high on Google (and other engines) for your keyphrase
To get more information about how to write a blog you can check out my post called Blogging: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Bloggers
So, you’ve managed to get your reader to click on your post which takes them to your blog on your website. Great.
People want to be entertained. Long gone are the days when companies could just stick an ad in the Yellow Pages and the clients would come flooding in. Consumers want more bang for their buck and with social media channels providing a high level of connection, customers are seeking out interaction; a two-way communication with the brands they love.
Blogging is a great way to get engagement with your audience. Be great at this by delivering value with every single post you write.
If you aren’t sharing, you aren’t caring.
Give tips, tricks, hacks, info, “secrets”, quick wins, freebies – it doesn’t really matter what you call it.
Don’t sell your product, offer your experience and knowledge and this will grow your fan base.
And always, ALWAYS reply to any comments on your blog post to keep the conversation flowing.
A great way to build a loyal fan base is to create an active community around your business. Companies often use social media such as Facebook, Linked-In or Instagram, but you can also use your blog to become a go-to resource in your field.
When you create a community for your clients, enabling them to contact you, ask questions or simply have a chat, you create a feeling of togetherness and this increases the chances of customer retention and word-of-mouth recommendations.
A business that takes the time to truly engage and build a community for its customers gains a priceless benefit – the trust of those who buy.
Trust is vital for an ongoing customer relationship.
As soon as trust is lost, chances are high that the customer is also lost.
Blogging helps to gain and keep trust because it allows you to show customers your philosophy and your ethics at a much deeper level than a tweet or a gram.
Through your blog, you can develop your brand voice and be a business that your customer can rely on for well researched accurate information.
Become the go-to authority in your industry and you will have people coming back to you time and again. It takes time to develop a body of information which positions you as an expert in your area, but small businesses need to play the long game and over time it will pay dividends.
As an example, if you are social media management agency and you write blogs which help small businesses to understand the value of different platforms and how to use them effectively, you will deliver benefit to your readers to help them navigate a complex area.
They may use that information to run their own social media but as they grow and they need someone to manage it for them, they are much more likely to come to you, as their authority on social media, who they know, like and trust.
Brand loyalty is big business. Retail companies have led the way in developing customer loyalty programmes. It’s much more cost effective to sell to an existing client than it is to find a new client to sell to. All successful businesses know this and they develop ways to encourage the customer to stick with their product.
In the UK, supermarkets have been at the forefront of this marketing technique with Tesco’s Clubcard programme being the biggest and most well known scheme. However, brand loyalty is not just for the big players.
Small businesses can develop their own loyalty schemes to keep customers coming back and these could include using your blog and or email marketing tools to keep in contact with your customers. Blog posts which offer the opportunity for rewards related to continued purchases can help to keep your customer sticky to your brand.
So, there you go.
6 reasons why blogging is still important for small businesses who cannot afford broadcast advertising. If you are interesting in reading more about why blogging is still important in 2020, why not check out this article: 11 Biggest Benefits of Blogging for Small Business Owners.
Why don’t small businesses blog then?
The main reasons I have heard for not doing it are:
- I tried it. It doesn’t work
- It takes too long
- I don’t know what to write about
Tell me in the comments below if you currently blog for your business and if you don’t, why not?
In answer to reason no.1, it’s true that blogging is not a quick fix. It doesn’t work overnight. Businesses who have blogged but not gained any traction have probably not understood how to blog in the right way. I refer you again to the blog on habits for successful blogging.
In response to “It takes too long” – it doesn’t have to. Read my blog about how to write a blog post fast or hire someone else (a.k.a. me) to do it for you.
Finally, for no.3, “I don’t know what to write about” checkout my step by step guide on 26 blog ideas anyone can use for a variety of different blog topics.
For a free no-obligation consultation about how blogging could help your business, get in touch on 07789 928530 or email [email protected]