(815) 503-0286 matt@matthewlbrennan.com

Are you getting the most out of your business blog? Chances are marketers and other business owners have told you that you need a business blog to improve your sales online. But there are simple steps you can take to make sure that your blog is working for you the way it should be.

Eight ways to increase sales with your business blog

Include a Call to Action – Your audience may not take you up on your offer if they don’t know what you want them to do. A call to action can simply be asking those who are interested to reach out by email. It can be a link to your product page. If your post is truly genuine, your audience won’t mind the one sentence pitch at the end. And it may make all the difference for you.

Offer Something that Matters to Your Audience – There’s nothing wrong with making an offer in your blog post if it is done with tact, and not done too frequently. Whatever you decide to offer, you’ll want to make sure it is something they will likely be interested in. It is important to know and understand your audience.

Be Authentic – To put it bluntly, your audience can smell a rat. If you are not being genuine, if you are acting like a spambot, they’ll notice. I’m sure you’ve heard the adage that people do business with people they like. So go ahead, put your interests out front. I’ve included my obsessions with Cubs baseball, Bears football and Sons of Anarchy before. I’ve written about my son. All of these things have served as conversation starters for me. You never know who might identify. Your business blog should not be all sales all the time. Have a little fun. It can go a long way.

Educating Your Customers on What They Need – You know more about your business than your customers do. You have experience and an expertise. It’s up to you to educate. It’s up to you to show them what they might need. A word of caution on this, however – your customers likely don’t have the same background that you do. You may need to find ways of explaining your subject matter without all the high-end industry lingo. Don’t talk down to them, but don’t assume they know all the industry vocabulary either.

Stress Benefits Over Features – When you think of features, think of a bunch of computer guys sitting around talking about RAM, programming languages, or CPUs. This may all make sense to a serious computer aficionado, but to the average user or customer, it may as well be Greek. To follow through with the metaphor, the benefits of a good computer might be large amounts of memory, good for storing music, photos and videos. It might be a fast processing speed that allows the computer to function quickly with several programs open. Benefits are how your product helps your customer, which should be the focus of your business blog anyway.

Learn to Provide Value Without Selling – Your customers may not always be looking for an immediate purchase. A lot of times they might be conducting some research, or looking to have a few questions answered. If you can become that resource for them, they may just buy from you when the time is right. If your business blog can serve as your customers’ resource, it will improve your chance at building a loyal customer base.

Promote Your Blog to Widen Your Audience – Are you doing everything possible to promote your business blog? You can post it on your Facebook page, Facebook groups, Twitter account, Google Plus account, LinkedIn account, LinkedIn groups and many, many other places. You can set up an email subscription so your customers can access your posts from their inbox. There are also ways to syndicate your material to reach a wider audience. All of these things have the potential to bring in more readers and grow your customer base. 

Cross Promote Your Print and Web Marketing – Make sure your blogging efforts are part of your larger digital and print marketing strategies. The customers who receive your print materials should also be aware of your social media accounts. Your social followers should be aware of your print or in-store marketing efforts. Everything should tie together to help you sell more. When your business blog reaches your entire audience, you win.

Looking to find out more about business blogging, or continue the conversation? Contact me today.  Matt Brennan is a Chicago-based marketing writer and copy editor