As someone who works online, I'm always looking for the most effective ways to get my ideas and expertise out into cyberspace to ensure I'm getting my little corner of the digital world.
Like it or not, having a blog that gets consistent attention from you has a lot of benefits that shouldn't be ignored. A lot of my clients and those I coach, are overwhelmed at the idea of writing consistently. I have to remind y'all that my mission is to help you find the most simple & streamlined ways of managing your digital media.
So don't poo-poo the blog idea until you hear me out. Really, it's much more simple than you think.
Here are my top 5 reasons why blogging is so important:
3. SOCIAL MEDIA CONTENT: I constantly hear people say that they can't figure out what to post on social media. Even when they have an excess of material. And that's not good. The only thing worse than no social media presence is a bad social media presence, meaning inconsistent, last minute, thoughtless posts! A blog is an easy solution for this by providing an anchor for you. You have ideas, concepts, images, a topic you've assumed is of interest to your audience - a focus! Use images and material from the blog as social media content which ultimately will send people back to your site. Google likes this too and so will you!
4. HONE YOUR WRITING SKILLS: I read a fantastic quote this week that I posted on Twitter - "Copy writing is the number one skill that every entrepreneur should learn" ~ Derek Gehl YES, YES and YES! If you're doing anything related to business, you must be able to write. This is doubly true if you're doing anything related to marketing your business. So at very least, use your blog to get better at writing. It's a skill you MUST have. Luckily the internet has provided us a much more casual platform for business writing than in days gone by, so don't fret. Just write.
5. LET THEM KNOW YOU - Social media was designed as a peer-to-peer network. Technology has supported that trend and over the last 5 years, we've seen how easy it is to connect with almost anyone, anywhere. It's important for businesses to stay transparent and although there needs to be some professionalism included, you need to remember that people expect accessibility. A blog allows your audience and potential new clients to learn about you, as does your social media content, which we already decided you can easily pull from your blog posts. So take advantage of this easy to use platform to highlight things about your business that are interesting and useful!
I hope these 5 points help you realize that you've got to be on top of blogging. Not to necessarily become a blogger, but to leverage what the web has to offer artists and entrepreneurs. Don't miss out because you're over complicating the whole thing. Keep it simple, be creative and join the 21st century!
Business Strategy First, Marketing Strategy Second ~ Catherine Mellon
I've been more interested in planning the new year than cleaning up the old one! But I know at the end of the day I'll regret that. Luckily, I did manage to find an ounce of discipline last week and I managed to get the old year neatly wrapped up in a nice, neat little bow so I can move on.
I've had a series of years I call my apprenticeship years and I am now ready to step into my true professional persona. Focus comes from clarity and my apprenticeship years have helped me become really clear about my skills & my passions which are the foundation of my business. But there are a few things that need to happen before we go rushing off into the new year all willy nilly, and that is some planning.
If you're like me, then you may cringe a bit at the minute details that need your attention. After all, I'm an entrepreneur, don't you know! I have visions to envision, dreams to dream up and ideas to execute. If there's one thing my apprenticeship years have taught me, it's that without a plan, that 'entrepreneurial spirit' will run me, my business and my bank account, right into the ground. So, we start the year with a plan. After all, it's tough to plan a marketing strategy without a business strategy. Makes sense, right?
So on that note - Have you done an overview of your year? Are you starting to work on your business plan? No matter how small your business, you need a plan. A marketing strategy without an overview for the entire business can be a waste of time & money. For January I encourage you to set your intention to PLAN. I found this fantastic article that has resources for a few different types of business planning. If your business is larger than a solopreneur or small business, or has big goals such as finding investors or growing internationally, you may be interested in some of the amazing tools you can find at the Canadian Business Development Bank. Along with a fantastic business plan template, there are all sorts of articles designed to help you consider all the factors that will potentially influence your success. Even though it's technically designed for Canadian businesses, we're all pretty cool up here so go on and use it as a resource. We don't mind sharing!
Your business plan will include a sales & marketing section that will include your marketing plan. If you are an artist, photographer or designer and you need help with your digital marketing, let's connect! My courses are launching shortly and I have a ton of goodies coming your way in 2017. The first step is to get them all into a plan. Happy 2017 & happy planning!
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Catherine Mellon is a Social Media Director with 5 years experience helping entrepreneurs & small businesses use the internet to grow their business.