For Women Entrepreneurs on Blogging to Create Value

IMG_0766Would you like to use blog posts or articles for marketing your business, but you don’t know where to get started? Sales and marketing are essential to every female entrepreneur to launch or grow her business. You can use blogs to help promote your business and give value to build relationships with future prospects.  The best part is that it’s free marketing and if you do it right, you can maximize each blog to reach prospects in multiple places. This article shares a few tips to get you started and is the first of two articles. The second blog covers how to make your blog into a multi-purpose vehicle to increase your social media exposure.

Quick Note: there are slight differences between blogs and articles, for example the length, 1500 or less words vs. 1500 or more words; 1st person vs. 3rd person; and the tone, scholarly vs. relationship. My writings are more of a combination, perhaps a “blarticle,” but for the purpose of this message, I will use blog and article synonymously.

Just like going to the gym, it can be hard to get started blogging, but once you’re there, it feels great and provides tremendous value. There are several things to consider when blogging, including writing for your ideal customer, determining your topics, and where you’re going to host.

Determining your ideal customer is a great first step. Many business owners make the mistake of thinking they should reach everyone. This comes from fear of not wanting leave anyone out or missing an opportunity. The challenge is that you will end up missing your best target because your message is too broad and people will have a hard time thinking “she’s talking to me” or “she knows what I’m facing,” and ultimately “I need her product or service.” Identify your different targets and put them through a filtering system to determine what target you are best serving. I use a filtering system that I teach my coaching clients with specific criteria I identify. This helps them get very clear on their best target (and sometimes top two targets) that are a right fit.

Creating topics is the next step. Once you have your targets chosen, topic selection becomes much easier. If you already have tons of topics, but don’t know your target, start with organizing the topics and then pick your target. Assuming you are now settling in on your target, you can take multiple actions to develop topics.

Interview people in your current customers. Write 5-10 questions you think others in your target might want to know more about and schedule conversations with 5-10 people. Let them know they will be featured as an expert on your blog and in your social media. Do not write the blog verbatim from your interview. Deconstruct it and rewrite it for readers.

Interview your prospects. Again, 5-10 questions about what you want to know from your prospects. What are they looking for in a business like yours? What ways have they been helped before by someone like you? This serves to generate information for your blogs and starts to build rapport with your targets

#Salestip this method also allows you to hear from your potential customers exactly what they are looking for from you.

Read articles and watch videos from successful people in your industry. Watch what the most successful people do and create your own ideas from there. Is there something you totally agree with and can expand on with more information? Do you have a twist on an idea? Perhaps you disagree with someone and have a different viewpoint.

Read articles and watch videos from influencers who serve the same target, but in a different category. I was helping a client to determine her topics and she tells me about someone on YouTube who she admires. They are in an unrelated industry, but serve a similar target. I watched the video and created 10 new topics from ideas I had from the first five minutes of the video.

Subscribe to Google Alerts. Go to Google, type in your target or product/service, and have Google send you alerts when an article is published about your target or product/service. Read the articles each week and write a summary or review of what you’ve learned from this week’s news.

Hosting your blog is a pretty easy thing to do. Word Press is a great tool for hosting your blogs. There are a number of other free websites that allow you to host as well, but Word Press is my favorite. You can write a blog post and schedule it to post automatically on your other social media platforms such as your Facebook business page and Twitter. Caution, you can select to post on LinkedIn too, but you’ll want to publish a separate post on LinkedIn so you can have a chance to get picked up by LinkedIn Pulse. Pulse does not pick up shared links. You’ll also want to post your blog on your website.

In the next article, you’ll learn some time saving and marketing maximizing tips to get the most of the work you create with your blogs. Stay tuned!

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