Thoughts from the flying carpet
Seven years ago a friend of mine, a traffic manager (his job is to funnel Internet traffic to websites) told me I needed a blog for my Tae Kwon Do studio. I didn't really believe him, but tried my best to comply. My thought was, "Just one more thing I don't have time for, added to my To Do List. But I guess I can use it to promote new products and classes." For a couple years I updated the blog, but it never got me anywhere. Eventually I gave up.
Since then I've learned a great deal about marketing my businesses over the Internet. Now I am a regular guest contributor to two different blogs, have been featured in many others, and have even started my own: Thoughts from the Flying Carpet.
What's made the difference between then and now? Knowledge and experience have taught me to use a broader perspective. Truth is, back then I had no respect for blogging. I thought it was something only aspired to by teenagers who didn't want a real job. Because of this bias my initial idea, to use the blog as a glorified "showroom," was too narrow. Blogging does eventually help sell product, but that can't be the focus of a post. Blogging works because:
1. Blogs generate content. Content is key not just in search engine ranking, but also in social media engagement. Much better to create your own rather than share that of your competitors.
2. Writing guest blogs on widely read sites can increase your social media presence exponentially. Think about it: if you guest write a piece for another blog, it's tweeted to their followers. If it's an established blog, you can have your piece in front of tens of thousands of new eyeballs. Don't underestimate the importance of Twitter. Blogging and Twitter are the new way to do P.R. Just look at the news today. How did Hillary Clinton announce that she is running for President of the United States? She tweeted it. Which leads to . . .
3. Blogs are MUCH cheaper than press releases: blogging is free, whilst press releases start at $500 and rise steeply after that.
4. Blogging allows you to share your expertise with others. Being an expert in your field magnetizes new customers.
5. A great blog article gets shared many times- they can even get picked up by a news agency or go viral.
6. Blogs are an excellent way to increase your site's search engine ranking. As search engines have become more advanced, they place good content high in their rankings. This is why writing a blog is more important now than paying someone to embed a bunch of keywords into your website copy or arcane chatrooms. If you don't believe me, look at the numbers. Recent research has demonstrated that companies with blogs have 55% more website visitors.*
7. Blogs are an excellent way to network. Want to meet people in your industry, or get noticed by key influencers? Comment on their blogs, or write a guest piece for their site. If you have a blog, invite them to write for your site. Social media is a numbers game and everyone wants new followers.
8. They are a wonderful way of communicating with your existing customers. Communication builds customer loyalty, especially in today's world that is increasingly run by computers and hired guns based in Mumbai.
9. Blogging stimulates creative thinking. Creative thinking can lead to new products, markets and more.
10. Blogging helps you learn. Generating high quality content requires research. When you read new research, you learn. The more you know, the more you can stay ahead of your competitors.
What are the reasons not to blog? I can only think of two: (1) you simply don't have the time and (2) you don't feel confident in your writing abilities. Both of these have an easy solution: hire someone to do it for you! Many people ghost write blogs for others at a reasonable price point, myself included. For more information about this, visit my website: http://www.theflyingcarpet.es/blogging or just send me an email over Linkedin.
*Research conducted by Hubspot, 2014
About our Blog
The Flying Carpet blog provides information, inspiration and entertainment to people that like to expand their horizons. Its mantra is peace through openness and connection. We find this is often achieved through sharing experiences of travel, yoga and social media, but attainable other ways as well.
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