Professional Web Studio

Web Development - Search Engine Optimization
Online Marketing

2011 May06

Blogging for Your Local Business - Tips and Ideas to Help You Get Started

Written by: Darlene

Have you been in business for a while but been apprehensive in using the Internet to promote and market your business?

Did you know that creating a blog for your business is a fun and very inexpensive way to market your business?

Today I am going to talk about tips and ideas that will help you get started in building a blog for your local business so that you can increase awareness of your business and attract lots of new customers that may not otherwise know you exist.

Select Interesting Topics

Be creative in your writing while sharing your expert knowledge of your industry.

blogging local business

You can begin by spending a bit of time during the week just coming up with blog post topics. You want to write your own posts, not just copy and paste articles from someone else’s site to yours (even if you do give them credit). Google really dislikes “duplicate content”.

What I do is grab a pen and my notebook and find a quiet spot where I know I won’t be interrupted. I relax and just let ideas come to me.

I also seem to come up with good ideas just as I am trying to fall asleep. I have heard many other people say that their best ideas come to them just as they are falling asleep because things are quiet around them and they feel more relaxed.

You’ll find new ideas everywhere – newspapers, magazines, other people’s blogs.

You may want to try carrying some sort of notebook with you throughout the day so that you can quickly write down ideas as you think of them.

If you attend networking meetings or business association meetings listen to what people are talking about. If they mention any troubles or issues they are having that relate to your industry use them as ideas on what to blog about.

I personally find networking meetings to be a great source of inspiration.

As you write your posts remember that people typically go online looking for entertainment and fun, or help with something.

If you are a bakery or a new candy store, blog about how your products can be used for fun and entertainment at birthday parties and other big special events.

If you are a massage therapist or naturopath, blog about:

  • How to eliminate stress before it takes over your life
  • How to sit at your computer properly so you don’t end up with a pain in your neck
  • An excellent vitamin routine that will significantly boost your energy

A landscaper could blog about:

  • What types of trees and plants grow well in a specific climate zone
  • How often to water your lawn and trees
  • How early is too early to plant your garden when you live up North

Article Layout Ideas

If you are new to blogging, grab a magazine and look at how their articles are done.

Each article usually has one or more beautiful pictures that relate to the article topic.

local business ideas

You can do the same thing with your blog posts by adding pictures of your work, whether it be, landscaping, home staging, or a cupcake bakery.

Again, just as magazines do, use great attention grabbing titles for your blog posts.

As well, you always want to include specific phrases in your titles that pertain to your industry. You can also use sub-headings throughout your blog posts to break up the content and draw a person’s attention down through your post.

Keep in mind that online people typically skim an article first to see if it is of interest to them, and if it captures their attention, then they will go back and read more.

If you are operating a local business then it is very important that you try to include your location in the titles of your post and throughout your content.

Some days that will work well with your content and some days it won’t. Just do the best you can.  The point of doing this is to grab the search engines attention which in turn will help new potential customers find you online.

When you write your blog posts try to write 600 words or more.

If you find this difficult, then begin by just jotting down points and ideas. Whatever comes to mind.

Re-read your ideas and begin elaborating on them.

If you find that some of your ideas do not really fit well with your post then copy them to another page and use them in other posts.

When you were in school and you were learning how to write essays you were probably taught that you start a new paragraph each time you move on to a new point.

Blog posts and web content are different. As I mentioned above, people skim and like to be able to read articles online very quickly. It is much easier to read quickly if the paragraphs within the article are only 2 to 3 sentences long. Almost point form.

If you have never noticed that before, find some posts where the paragraphs are quite long and see if they hold your attention or if you get anxious and want to move on.

Do Written Interviews

Find businesses that align nicely with your business and ask them if they would be interested in participating in an online written interview.

Come up with 4 or 5 unique questions based on their business and ask them to write the answers.

Once you receive their answers you can create a blog post with an introduction, the questions and answers, and then a thank you paragraph with a link back to their business website. You can also ask them to send pictures of their work or of themselves working in their business, which you can then include in the blog post.

This is a “win – win” situation for both of you. You have a new interesting blog post and they get free publicity.

Offer Coupons and Special Deals

Instead of paying for ads in newspapers and magazines to advertise your specials, start using your blog. Find creative ways to include your special – limited time offer deals in your blog posts.

Tell your customers to watch your blog for upcoming specials and discounts and get them use to checking your blog on a regular basis.

Link those special announcements to your Facebook page for even wider coverage.

Blog About Special Events

Announce special events, such as:

  • seminars
  • BBQ’s
  • fundraisers, etc.

on your blog and then link back to your Facebook page. After each event blog about how well the event went and include pictures from the event.

One of the biggest reasons why you want to create a blog for your business is to attract more people to your business and increase your sales.

Remember to use social media to tweet and Facebook your blog posts to quickly spread the word about each new blog post you publish.

It is also important to note that more than likely your competition isn’t blogging yet, so this a great way for you to get noticed and stand out from your competition.

The more often you publish great blog posts the quicker Google will index them. The quicker Google indexes the blog posts for your local business the more new clients you will attract.

Your Turn

Have you started a blog for your business? What have you been doing that works well for you? I’d love to talk about your ideas in the comments area.

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