With the rise of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, some online marketers have ditched their blogs in favor of social networking. Yet others jump into blogging without a clear strategy — only to give up when their blog doesn’t translate into direct profits or new business in the door.
Are there some businesses and entrepreneurs who drive profits from their blog by converting audience into paying customers? Absolutely. But if you launch your blog with the goal of driving profits as your main goal, you’re likely to be sorely disappointed.
I have found that the single greatest benefit of my blogs is that they allow me to position myself as an experienced thought leader on the topics on which I blog.
For example, two weeks ago I attended a local chamber of commerce event and exchanged business cards with several potential clients. If they’re like me, they visited my Web site or “Googled” me to do some due diligence. As such, they were likely to find several years worth of blog posts on topics related specifically to the type of projects I discussed with them. Hopefully, those posts portray me as a thought leader in my field.
In other words: I know what I’m talking about.
Not a direct sale — but certainly helpful in closing the deal.
My blogs are also the primary way in which I build my personal brand. All of my content on Facebook, Twitter (and even some content on Instagram) flows from my blog posts. I blog about specific topics on which I want to be “branded.” This helps my long-term word of mouth business, and has even brought potential clients through the door.
I also get a significant (and growing) amount of Google Search traffic to my blogs. This is from people searching specifically for topics on which I blog about.
This is related to my point about personal branding, but when you Google my name, my personal blog comes up first. When you Google my company name, my company Web site comes up first. And it all links to the type of content I want people to see when they search for me.
I have clients who have been referred to my by friends who regularly read my blog. I have had clients who called me because of something they read on my blog. And, I’ve landed clients who went to my blog only after meeting me face-to-face.
In all cases, my blog was helpful in portraying me as a thought leader and building my personal brand, which contributes to direct and indirect growth of my company.
Cross-posted at EngageGravina.com.