The blog is now the most basic and essential marketing tool needed for today’s small businesses. Your blog can be a very powerful way for your readers, customers, audience, and market, to connect with you on a practical and emotional level, 24/7. If you do not include all the basic information that your readers are looking for when they visit your blog, they will leave your site feeling disappointed, and without making an emotional connection to you, your products, or services. And because of this, many will not return to your blog, or buy your products or services. Here is a quick run-down on the most essential information that you must include in your blog.
1. Quality Content
Content, content, content. Content is king. We have all heard these before. The problem is that too many blogs still don’t provide quality content. Practical, useful, insightful, honest, and helpful content, that provides the information that your audience is looking for, is by far the best way to build an audience. Quality content is your way to prove to your audience that you know what you are talking about. Then your audience will begin to trust you, your information, and your blog. Quality content is what will bring them back for more. These same people will then choose your products and services over your competition’s. Always remember, that the quality of your content is much more important that the quantity of content.
2. Biography / Personal Information
This is the place to show your credentials in a positive light. Show how your experiences, education, career, jobs, accomplishments, awards, etc., are proof that you know what you are talking about. Be very careful not to exaggerate. The instant your readers get the slightest hint that you are exaggerating, or boasting, or lying, you will lose their respect and trust – forever. They will never believe you again, and never come back to your blog, and never buy your products and services.
3. Contact Information
You must make it as easy as possible for your readers to contact you. For some businesses, an email address is enough. For others an email and telephone number is essential. You will need to decide on this one. Either way, make your contact information easy to find. And make sure that you respond as quickly as possible. The faster you respond to the email of telephone call, the more they will respect and trust you.
Photographs play an important role in helping your audience make an emotional connection with you. Photos of you at work; sitting at your desk; standing at a podium; displaying your product; with your family; with celebrities, etc. You get the idea. The internet is a visual medium. Use it to your advantage. If you don’t look good in photographs, then hire a professional photographer that will know how to make you look great. Looking professional is essential to gain the respect and trust of your audience.
5. Social Network Links
Social media is the wave of the future. Eventually, every person and every business will be using social media for networking with their colleagues and customers. With social media you can have your little spare-bedroom business doing business on a world-wide scale. You can easily start networking with customers and suppliers on a global scale, right from your home in the middle of nowhere. Be sure to check out LinkedIn, FaceBook, and Pinterest first.
6. Free Downloads
Be sure to provide documents that your blog’s visitors can download. Things such as your brochure for your products and services, a white paper, and a free ebook. Do NOT force them to provide you with any information, such as an email address, in order to download your free documents. This will scare away too many visitors. Most of those email addresses will be useless for marketing purposes anyway. Simply provide an easy and obvious way for them to contact you if they have any questions or need more information.