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Let’s talk about blogging and key for selling online. It can sound really scary, but the thing to realize about a blog (of any size) is that it’s really just a place to write and share. As a consultant, there is a huge benefit to having your own blog because it gives you a tremendous opportunity to set yourself up as the expert in your field. It also gives you a chance to stand out amongst the crowd of consultants in your company. Additionally, it gives you a platform where you can allow people a chance to get to know you.
You Become the Expert
No matter what you sell, your customers need to believe that you are the expert when it comes to not only your products, but your industry as well. When you blog, you provide real value to your customers. You teach them what your products are, how to use them, why they are special, other unique uses, things they work well for, how to modify them, etc. Use your blog to share all the things that you would share with someone in person.
The key to successful blogging, and more importantly, showing that you are the expert, is to also blog about things outside of your products that are still related to what your company specializes in. Let’s look at an example. Say you sell clothing. You might blog about how to pick the best size, what pieces compliment which body shapes, how to pair certain pieces, why your company uses a particular material, or how to best clean the clothing.
Now think about all the things that relate to how a person dresses, and blog about them too. How to pair jewelry with your outfit, tips for doing an easy manicure, how to pick accessories, daytime makeup for moms, what laundry detergent works best for what clothing material, etc.
Ultimately what we’re doing here is providing useful information for free. We’re offering value. It’s something social media expert Mari Smith calls Youtility. And you can read about it in more detail in her blog post called How To Succeed At Relationship Marketing With One Simple, Universal Method.
Pro Tip: Don’t worry if you don’t know a lot about other topics in your industry. Write about what you do know, and search out people who know about the topics you don’t! Then share what you’re learning or you could even have someone guest blog for you!
When you share good information (value) people begin to know, like, and trust you. People buy from people they know, like, and trust! Before you know it, other consultants will be sharing your information too, which is ultimately directing customers right back to you.
Pro Tip: If you’re not sure what to write about, listen to the questions your customers are asking. Any question a customer asks is a potential blog topic.
You Can Stand Out
We’d be willing to bet that if you were to poll a group of consultants from your company, you would find very few who are blogging. It’s not something many consultants do, which means you would be standing out simply because you have a blog!
Now pair that with the fact that your blog is packed full of valuable information and you’re setting yourself even further apart.
When someone has a question, they typically head to Google. With a blog and the answer to their question, there’s a real possibility that they’ll find you during their Google search! So not only have you provided value by answering their question, but you’ve connected with a potential customer you would have had no other way of connecting with!
You also stand out because you have a unique website (rather than a replicated company site) about the products you sell. Search engines will begin to recognize your site when people search for your company name. Remember, not everyone searching for your product already has a consultant. Your blog offers huge potential to connect with numerous people looking for someone to buy from.
People Get to Know You
Remember earlier when we said that people buy from people they know, like, and trust? Well, a blog gives you a chance to share your personality with the people who read it. It gives them a chance to get to know you.
Your personality can shine through in everything from the design of your blog (favorite colors and fonts) to the actual content you write about. In addition to your business specific content, you can write posts about your family, hobbies, special interests, etc.
People with common interests can become some of your best customers. After all, if you love your products, they probably will too.
We’re only really scratching the surface of how powerful a blog can be for your business here. We want you to be able to get started in a way that will benefit your direct sales business without just overwhelming you with possibilities. Once you’re up and running, you can begin to explore the other potential revenue streams a blog offers.
Blogging can be a pretty big commitment, so it’s important to decide if you’re ready to take on the task. It really is one of those things where you will reap what you sow. It’s a hugely powerful opportunity, but you need to be ready for the time it takes. If you’re not ready just yet, Pin this article for later and move on to another task, like Pinterest or an Email list.
If you are ready to dive head first into blogging head on over to Blue Host for easy to use, and affordable web services. When you get to the home page, scroll all the way to the bottom where you’ll see the Support tab and you can enter their Knowledge Base. There’s a great Getting Started Guide that will walk you through the process.
Be sure to read our post on Creating Your Own Brand before you build your blog, so you can bring it all together and stand out even more!