Developing a Blogging Strategy for Your Business PlanPosted by Jessica Oman
While most business plans don’t describe a marketing plan in detail, they usually do explain the company’s overall marketing strategy and an overview of tactics that will be used to generate leads and prospects. When I assess business plans, I often see marketing overviews that look something like this:
“Company X will use different marketing tactics including word of mouth, referrals, social media, blogging, brochures, and a web site to attract customers.”
Folks, that’s not a strategy. That’s a generic blanket statement. How do you implement that?
Yes, blogging is an important marketing tool for many businesses. But like any tactic, without effective implementation, it has no effect. And remember, your business plan needs to be written in a way that empowers you to implement it – otherwise, you’ll never use it.
Marketing through a Blog
If you plan to use blogging as part of your marketing strategy, ask yourself the following questions:
1. What will I blog about?
Choose topics that solve problems for your customers and give them added value on top of your products and services. For example, if you own a carpet cleaning business, you might blog about how to remove pet urine stains from a wool carpet. Telling your customers how to do it themselves – when you’d rather they pay you to do it – may seem counter-intuitive, but it positions you as an expert in your field and prepares potential customers to buy from you when they’re ready. There are many techniques for generating blog topics – try a few and see what works best for you.
2. How often will I blog?
Does your audience yearn for new information every day? If you’re a writer or an internet marketer, you might want to blog daily to keep readers engaged and interested in your content (and off your competitors’ sites). But maybe your site doesn’t need a lot of web site traffic; it just needs to be highly targeted. In this case it might be better to blog once a week or less, and spend the rest of your marketing hours promoting your business in another way. Find a balance that works for you.
3. What is the purpose of my blog?
You might be blogging to increase web traffic. Or, perhaps you need more leads. Beyond that, maybe you want more newsletter subscribers, or more conversions and therefore more real customers. A blog can serve all of these purposes, but you do need to choose one to be the primary focus, and tailor your content and formatting to serve that end.
Consider these three questions carefully, and describe their answers in your business plan, and you’re well on your way to creating a blogging strategy you can act on and evaluate.
What purpose does blogging serve in your business?