9 Reasons to Start Blogging Now

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To many, blogging can be seen as a tedious task that doesn’t yield a quick return on investment.  But if done correctly, blogging can be a powerful weapon to add to your marketing channel.  The first thing to remember is that it’s best to write helpful, motivational, or emotional content for your audience.  As long as you continue to provide value to people, they’ll remember you.  Keep in mind that trust isn’t built in one day; but once that trust is built it’ll be much easier to convert your readers to customers.  People hate being sold to by strangers.  But you won’t be viewed as a stranger after they view your blog because you’ll now have a relationship with them.

‘Help others get what they want, then you’ll get whatever you want’ – Zig Ziglar

Here are 9 reasons you ought to start blogging:

1. Create a relationship with your audience

The main reason people read blogs is because they deliver value in some shape or form.  If your blog is helpful to your readers, you begin to develop a relationship with them because of the help that you’re giving.  For example, the KISSMetrics blog does an excellent job of delivering helpful content about startups, analytics, and online marketing.  It’s no surprise that they have a highly engaged audience and large number returning visitors.

2. Blogging establishes you as an authority

As your readership grows, word begins to spread about how helpful your blog is. Being an authority can lead to many unforeseen opportunities such as guest blogging opportunities, people asking to guest blog on your blog, interviews, and more.  SEOmoz, an established leader in inbound marketing, continually attracts high quality writers to its blog.   This is a win/win scenario for both SEOmoz and the writer because:

  • SEOmoz gets high quality content that continues to help build their brand.  The content they receive is mostly free.
  • The writers get to build their brand by putting their content in front of a large, relevant audience.

3. SEO (organic traffic)

Some people think that SEO is a gimmick, but it’s actually a very powerful marketing tool if utilized correctly.  Blogging is a significant part of SEO because it continues to send signals to the search engines that your site is producing content worthy of being placed in its index. For the most part, your SEO strategy should be invisible.  If you look at sites like Amazon, Zappos, or SEOmoz, they’re actually well SEO’ed but don’t give the appearance or feeling of a spammy site.  Getting SEO right can lead to benefits such as skyrocketing your monthly visitors from 0 to 3 million. Just remember this: blogging is a part of SEO and is dangerous if used effectively.

4. Builds your e-mail list

Statistically, e-mail lists have shown to convert at a higher percentage than other marketing funnels.  But the question remains: why should people subscribe to your e-mail list?  The answer is because you’ve helped them so much that they want to give you permission to send them helpful e-mails.  In a sense, you’re continuing the relationship building process by consistently adding value to their lives.

5. Increases your social media following and RSS readership

Similar to growing your e-mail list, people only want to subscribe to you because they care about what you have to say.  One of the easiest ways to get someone to care is to help them solve a problem.  As mentioned earlier, solving a problem leads to word of mouth, which is still the most powerful and natural form of marketing.  Social media is simply a medium for others to talk about you.  Providing value with your blog is the easiest way to get people to broadcast your message across the web.

6. Become a better writer

You don’t necessarily need to be an english major to write well.  Becoming a good writer is all about writing more.  The great part about writing is it opens many doors for you.  People start to find out who you are, how you think, and what you’re all about.  And if you deliver immense value to them, they’ll remember you.  And if they remember you, you’ll start to see a lot of unforeseen opportunities.

7. Become a better salesman

A lot of people tend to avoid doing sales because it can be nerve wracking.  One issue people have with sales is articulating themselves because they tend to get nervous.  However, if you start to write more about your topic, you gain more confidence and the words start to flow.

8. Build relationships with specific people (guest blogging, interviews, etc.)

Blogging doesn’t just build a relationship with your audience, it can also create new relationships with individuals you want to target.  For example, BufferApp grew their customer base to 100,000 just by guest blogging.  The whole process of guest bloggingis simple: look for relevant audiences to write for, give them value, and get them interested in your work.  Boom. More people added to your audience! Keep in mind guest blogging is just one way to build relationships with others. Feel free to explore other tactics!

9. Increase leads

Some companies worry about revealing too many trade secrets will come back to bite them later.  The truth is if you’re out there delivering so much value with your blog, more good things will happen to you compared to the bad.  For example, the CEO of Likeable, Dave Kepern, gave away so many valuable social media strategies through their blog that one person actually approached him at a conference and told him he started a competitor because of his blog.  Dave was devastated by this.  A few months later, however, Likeable locked in a $200,000 contract because a marketing director felt that they could trust them with social media consulting after reading their blog.  In hindsight, Kepern’s ‘negative’ experience wasn’t that bad because he actually gave someone the courage to start his own company.  His ‘positive’ experience’ was phenomenal because he easily closed a six figure deal.

Conclusion

Blogging isn’t rocket science. It’s just hard work. And that’s like everything else in life. You don’t necessarily need to be the best writer on the block to get going. But you do need to start. Sure, you might not see an immediate ROI from blogging but you can be sure that if you continue doing a great job, you’ll build an audience that will talk about you. And that’s stronger than any form of marketing.

What are some other good reasons to blog?

Image credit: Jakeandlindsay

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Eric Siu

Eric Siu is the User Growth lead at Treehouse. He likes Apple products, food, travel, and Monopoly Deal. You can follow him on Twitter at @ericosiu.

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