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Extra Q&A’s for New Business Bloggers

As promised, here are the outstanding questions in our ‘Q&A’s for new business bloggers‘ series – The place where you ask a question, and we, well,…answer it.

As this is numero four, how about catching up on the previous  Q&A’s, like ‘how to structure a blog post’ and ‘community blogging’.

Q&A’s part one, part two and part three:

Onto our blogging Q&As

1) Frank Bradley hails from Oracle as their Social Media Evangelist and is an excellent blogger! (He’s also a real sweetie, but keep that to yourself!).

I’m interested in where people get inspiration for their blog posts.

Howdy Frank and thanks for the excellent question. To answer it, I  did a bit of reseach using Facebook Questions.

I asked the question using the simple random sample method. These are the results:

  • Interactions with prospects  (3)
  • Interactions with clients (2)
  • TV, news (international, regional or local) (2)
  • Incidents in personal/professional life, pop culture, current events and trends (1)
  • Blog posts by others in your industry (0)
  • Blog posts by others, regardless of industry (1)
  • A conversation online or offline (1)
  • What is happening at your company (1)

For me personally, blogs by others in my industry, current events and trending topics.

The first because it triggers thoughts about a subject you know or encourages you to learn and share a topic you should know. It gives you an opportunity to assess the interest and engagement levels towards the topic first.

Trending topics are a great source of material because they will be of local, regional or international interest. People will be discussing and searching for these subjects and are more likely to read your posts, It is geared towards real-time events, which is the nature of social media communications.

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2) The uber famous recruitment expert Careers Coach; Greg Fry is as famous as Guinness (well, we think so…). He asks;

What are your thoughts on reposting blogs on other sites?

Hi there Gregin short, I like, and do it!

Reposting blogs to other sites – the benefits:

  • Increases exposure of the blog post
  • Allows you to share the post with a different pool of readers
  • Gives you a higher response rate
  • Lets you ‘test’ which sites are best for sharing and which blogs are best shared (tongue-twister!)
  • Your post-life increases

You might find though Greg, that you have to ‘tweek’ your post for the different audiences. Do also check terms of blogging, as some sites ask you to post an ‘origional, unpublished blog’ and to leave the blog for a certain time period.  Some have a stricter policy or require a number of posts per month/quarter/year.

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3) IT Consultant, Robert Doherty from KD Systems in Cork is a Microsoft whizz and works alongside my nearest and dearest.

What fiscal benefit does blogging bring to a company to offset the man hours used to write it?

A fair question, and one best answered by listing all the benfits associated with blogging.

Here goes… :

  • Gives you authority online for your industry / expert area
  • Creates exposure for you and your business
  • Opportunity for others to network, engage and collaborate with you
  • Increases your web footprint (online mentions / reach)
  • Keeps others up-to-date with you and your business
  • Puts you on the map
  • Give s you access to third party audiences and widens your sphere of influence (community blogging)
  • SEO (Search engine optimisation) – helps with keyword searches
  • Is free
  • Is a human voice

Blogging is a soft sell, as opposed to a hard, direct sell. You instead ‘sell’ by sharing your knowledge and expertise.

Example: I blog about a project I’ve been working on for a client. I showcase my work and discuss aims, objectives and outcomes, I then share this post and a ‘potential’ client reads, enquires about this service for their business and I’ve got a brand new client.

It works because they see first-hand what I do, they can assess my knowledge, read other blogs and feel confident that I know my stuff. Even better – they’re on my turf – exactly where I want them to be.  And if they don’t enquire, they could share my post, refer me or comment. Either way they’re engaged. My exposure and brand penetration grows.

In business terms I’ve gained:

  • Actual / potential custom
  • Exposure through branding
  • Loyalty
  • Engagement

All for a small amout of my time and zero cost.

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4) Our networking buddy Debbie, is back with another question. She’s the leading lady at Yellowhouse Childrenswear!

How do you drive people to your blog once written?

The million euro question has been asked. Getting people to engage with blogs has a lot to do with strategy. A strategy could use the following factor:

  • Branding / Voice / Personality / Style
  • Reputation / Reach / Brand penetration
  • Blogging exposure / Audience
  • AIDA Model (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action)

So we’re looking at  – Who you are, Do people know you and your company well enough to comment and share?

Can they relate to your style and voice? Are you friendly, humerous, cute, serious, formal, informal or sarcastic?

Are you blogging on your own blog? Community blogging sites? LinkedIn Groups, Forums or Online Networking Sites?

Is this your target audience? Are they receptive? Are your posts interesting? What they what to read?

Thinking about these will force you to consider your blogging, locate your audiance, write what they want to read and adapt your style for them.

If readers like your style and enjoy your subjects, they they will respond by commenting, sharing and following you.

A few tips

  • Always reply to a comment
  • Use the soft-sell approach (discuss)
  • End with a question or suggestion
  • Research all available blogging channels
  • Connect with your influencers online

This is a post I did a while back, which discusses social media engagement through a story  Social Media Secret Formula: Treat it Like a Courtship.

Heading off for a birthday lunch now at Water Rock, Midleton  – happy reading ; 0 )

As always, share your thoughts on our answers, add your own questions and feel free to push the boundaries of our blogging knowledge.

1 Comment

  1. [...] new series ‘Selling online’, follows on from our very successful ‘Q&A’s for new business bloggers‘ series. Inspired by the post ‘How to sell online in 60 seconds‘; online [...]

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