Category Archives: Uncategorized

7 advantages of having a business blog

Are you still wondering what are the advantages of having a business blog? You may find yourself facing this question especially when you’re planning to invest time and money in this particular aspect of your online marketing effort and just like any other function of the business, you have to decide what are the advantages and disadvantages of having a business blog.

The advent of social media has definitely disillusioned some people. Many have started claiming from the rooftops that the days of blogging are numbered. They actually don’t understand blogging. You see, blogging was never a fad. Social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter may go tomorrow, and an alternative may serface, but blogging is going to remain there. I used to maintain a blog even when the term hadn’t been defined and one needed to upload blog posts as individual HTML pages.

Listed below are the 7 advantages of having a business blog.

Improved search engine rankings

When you want to know the biggest advantages of having a business blog, this one often gets the first spot among business owners. Good search engine rankings matter to every business because it’s the targeted traffic that helps you do business on the web. Improved search engine rankings can help you bring down your search engine marketing costs considerably. Just imagine if you’re paying per click on Google Adwords how much money you must be spending for, say, 200 clicks. The same 200 clicks can be obtained, practically free of cost, if your blog can help you improve your search engine rankings.

When you have a business blog you constantly create content on specific topics and this automatically improves your keyword density in a natural manner. When you create truly relevant and useful blog posts you begin to get targeted traffic for not just shorter keywords and key phrases, but also longtail expressions.

Aside from quality content, search engines like Google also consider your popularity while ranking your links. This popularity can be gauged by the number of people linking back to your website and blog, and the level of engagements that you have with people on various social networking websites. If more people share your content on their websites and blogs your search engine rankings improve. If the content that you post on your social networking timelines gets promoted by other people, your search engine rankings improve then too.

By constantly providing valuable content you encourage people to promote your links directly and indirectly.

Greater social reach

No matter how many messages you exchange on your Facebook and Twitter timelines, unless you create authoritative blog posts and then share their links you cannot make much impact. If all the time you are promoting someone else’s links, you are just doing what others are doing. Having your own blog allows you to share your knowledge, wisdom and experience with your visitors and your social networking friends in depth. It’s no use creating longer posts on Facebook and Google Plus and generating quality content for them, why not do it for your own blog?

When you publish quality content on your own blog, you also provide an opportunity to your followers and friends to promote your links rather than promoting someone else’s.

Educated and aware customers and clients

This is one of the greatest advantages of having a business blog, and this is where your actual conversion rate improves. When you constantly educate your customers and clients and provide them the information they need, they are always going to do business with you rather than someone who always seems aloof. People don’t like always being told what they should buy. They want to make these decisions on their own, or based on the recommendations of their friends and people they trust. You can become someone they trust by continuously providing them relevant and topical information.

Community and brand building

Businesses and brands that have thriving communities built around them enjoy a solid customer base. How can you build a community around your business? By constantly engaging your visitors. You can do that by posting interactive content on your business blog and then encouraging your visitors to leave their feedback. The more you are able to do that, the more reasons they have to visit your blog multiple times and consequently, develop an affinity for your presence.

The advantage of developing your own community is that people don’t just talk about your business and brand on your own blog, they also do it on various other forums and social networking websites, providing you free publicity in the process.

Have your own PR channel

Is your business attracting negative publicity? Do not let the press depend on random sources, provide all the information on your blog so that later on nobody can deny what you said or misquote you.

Easy to maintain

Despite tremendous advantages of having a business blog, it is very easy to maintain. Once it is setup, just a training of a couple of hours can enable all your employees to use your blog to create fresh content. Here is an advise that may cost me some business, but it will help you. There are many businesses who train their present employees to write for their business blog instead of hiring a dedicated content writer. This is because, who would know the business better than they do? Anyway, the point is, it is extremely easy to set up and maintain a blog.

Easily brand-able

You don’t need to use the default theme of the blog that comes with your typical blogging software like WordPress. You can easily create a blog theme that looks just like your business website with a little help from someone who knows how to use style sheets and a little bit of PHP.

So this was a list of 7 advantages of having a business blog. Do you have some more advantages in your mind? Do mention them in the comments section.


This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged Advantages, , Business Blog, Own Blog, Your Blog, Your Business Blog on by Amrit Hallan.

Using latest news to create fresh content and improve SEO

A quick link to a nicely written article on how to improve your SEO using latest news. The writer has termed it as Newsjacking.

With search engines like Google attaching more and more importance to the freshness and topical significance the content that you publish, news automatically get higher importance. The only problem is what if your industry has no particular news to offer? Then you create a context. For instance, in my content writing and content marketing business, how can I use the latest news to highlight my content writing services in terms of getting some SEO benefits? That’s where creativity comes in. Let me use a small example.

Recently, Google decided to shut down its RSS feeds management service “Google Reader” and people to whom the RSS subscribers matter were really worried (most of them still are). So I quickly created a blog post explaining to them how they can salvage their RSS subscribers in the event of Google shutting down its RSS reader. As I mentioned above, the trick is, creating a context. RSS subscribers matter to those who regularly publish blogs and those who publish blogs need content for their blogs. This is just one example. In a similar manner, you can create a clever context and use topical news to get some leverage.


Writing content for your local market

Wondering how to write content for your local market? If you’re mostly serving customers and clients within your city and you face lots of tough competition you need to strategically create content so that you can be easily found on the web.

While writing content for your local market you need to take care of the following:

  • You need to focus on the name of your city or all the surrounding cities you provide your product or service in
  • Focus on local landmarks. Landmarks are normally exclusive to particular cities. For instance, the statue of liberty is unique to the city of New York, if I’m not mistaken.
  • Focus on the local topics people can really relate to

While creating content for your local market you don’t always have to worry about your marketing pitch. Yes, of course people recognise you and your content by the business you represent, but in order to optimize your content for your local market and generate targeted traffic you need to write content (or get it written by a content writer) that talks about local issues either exclusively or in the context of your business.

Take for instance a fundraising marathon taking place in your area and one of the participants representing your business. You can publish a series of blog posts chronicling all the activities happening around the event, including how the person who will be representing your business is preparing for the big day. You can have video interviews. You can have photographs. You can compile a list of similar events organized in your city over the past 10 years, and so on. This will make you a part of the hubbub going on around you.

But you will have to make sure somewhere or the other your brand or your business is an integral part of your localised content marketing. Recently I came across a website that offers content writing services and it primarily concentrates on those clients who are specifically looking for content writers from India. In order to get content for almost everything related to India they have created a huge repository of articles and blog posts covering hundreds of topics. Although this might be getting tons of traffic to their website I’m not sure how much of this traffic actually converts. I am not against this strategy because if nothing else, thousands of people coming to your website everyday at least raises awareness. It’s just that you need lots of time and money to generate so much content.

Since content marketing can cost you money, you should focus on material that pushes your business interests forward instead of simply creating traffic. You can cover local events, local landmarks and other local news but make sure somehow they are related to your business.


My favorite content writing tool

Early in the day I was reading somebody’s blog post in which she had listed 50 of her favorite blogging and content writing tools. Right now I cannot access the post because I’m writing this from my galaxy tab and not my computer.

But if you ask me what are my favorite blogging and content writing tools these days, I’ll simply say Google Docs, and nothing else. And even the too I keep my editor window maximized (F11) and toolbar disabled so that I have just the editing screen with my text.

In order to improve my focus and eliminate distractions I’m rapidly moving towards minimalism and this also means using less and less tools. After all what do I have to do? I have to write. Whether I’m writing for one of my clients or for myself, all I need is an ability to type without much fuss.

So when I’m away from my computer I use my 7-inch Android tablet and google drive and when I’m in front of my computer I use Google Docs. Other than these, at least for writing, I don’t use anything else.

Of course for publishing I use WordPress but that’s not a tool but a platform. In fact, even for my main content writing website I use WordPress as backend.

Oh, and I forgot to mention GetPocket that was previously known as “Read it Later” or something. I use it not only to read useful blog posts and articles on my tab but also to compile content writing ideas.


Defining Content Marketing

Joe Pulizzi on his Junta42 blog has put up some great definitions – gathered from various content marketing experts – of content marketing.

My favourite there is this one:

Traditional marketing and advertising tells the world that you are a rockstar. Content marketing shows the world that you are one. — Robert Rose

Don’t take “rockstar” literally; what he means is, instead of harping on about what great stuff you’re selling and what miraculous product you have got, content marketing helps your prospective customers and clients find that out on their own.

So how do I explain content marketing to my clients?

I don’t have a definition, but I do tell them that their content creates a ripe ground for conversations and engagement. It’s easier to buy from you if I know you, but how do I know you unless you are close to me or I am mad about you, or if you’re a totally trusted and respected public figure? I begin to know you if you have regular conversations with me.

By “conversations” I don’t mean having useless talk – nobody has time for that. People remember you and visit your website multiple times if you offer them something valuable. Since you cannot offer them free services or free products all the time (you offer them once, so they will come to your website once, or maybe a couple of times) the best option for you would be offering them valuable information. This information exists in the form of content.

Content marketing primary constitutes of three activities, or rather four:

  1. Figure out what your target audience is looking for in terms of content
  2. Mostly which medium it uses (prefers to use) to access that content
  3. Produce that content and make it available through their preferred medium
  4. Keep doing that on an ongoing basis

Many people find the fourth point troublesome, but when it comes to marketing your products and services on the Internet, this is the most crucial point. Content abounds on the Internet. Millions of pages and blog posts (containing text, video, images and audio) are being published daily and within seconds your content can be buried under the new content.

So what’s the use of creating new content, you may ask, if it is going to be buried instantly?

This is where quality matters. Since most of the content has no value, valuable content gets highlighted not just on search engines, but also on various other websites and forums.

But then again, publishing one or a couple of valuable pieces of content doesn’t give you sustainable engagement. Engagement happens when you provide valuable content on an ongoing basis. It doesn’t have to be everyday, but it definitely has to be consistently regular, whether you publish new content every day, once a week, or once a month. Quality, coupled with regularity, creates the most effective content marketing platform.