Blogging For Profit
Blogging can be an insanely powerful tool in the business world today. As a human face for a company, a blogger, armed with a unique and engaging voice, brings a built-in customer base who are already in love with the brand.
Naturally, adding a blog to your e-business (or vice-versa) is an important step in kickstarting profits. Here are four tips for taking advantage of blogging as a way to increase the profit margin of your business.
1. Know Your Market
The most important part of any e-venture (or any business venture at all for that matter) is knowing your audience. You need to ask yourself who your target customers are. What do they want? What do they need? Who do they want to be like? Try writing up a description of the person you imagine shopping with you or visiting your site. Making a list of your ideal customer’s characteristics, likes, and dislikes will help you craft your online persona to best attract the right kind of business. While you want to be open to bringing in a variety of customers, defining your brand will help attract customers who keep coming back for your expert advice on exactly what they want.
2. Learn from the Pros
Remember that you are not alone in the e-commerce game. Plenty of people have tried, failed, and succeeded before you, and they can be a treasure trove of knowledge. Looking to others who have launched similar online ventures to yours can be incredibly helpful when first setting up your online business.
As an example, Nasty Gal is a retailer specializing in fashion, shoes and accessories for young women. The company has more than 550,000 customers in over 60 countries, making it the fastest-growing online retailer in the United States. Before Nasty Gal was a business giant, it was Sophia Amoruso’s vintage eBay store. She was able to grow her brand by pairing it with an awesome fashion blog, sharing designer spotlights and even astrological advice. By complementing her store with a blog, Amoruso established herself as an authority for a niche market.
3. Find Your Niche
This brings us to point number three: find your niche. The Internet is unfathomably large, and chances are there is someone out there right now trying for a piece of your market. Your job is to carve out a new corner of the Internet for yourself. Take a look back at that description of your perfect customer and ask yourself what makes him or her different? What product or service does your store or blog offer that no one else has yet? Finding what makes your brand special is what you will need to foster and grow with your blog and attract that perfect customer to your products and services.
4. Link ‘Em Up
While creating a blog for a store worked for Nasty Gal, it might sometimes be in a business’s best interest to do the reverse. Choosing to connect a business with an established blog opens up countless opportunities for content marketing. Content marketing is a marketing approach based on the creation and distribution of content meant for a targeted, well-defined audience in hopes of driving sustainable and profitable customer action.
If you are a small marketing company and you’ve already developed a reputation based on your unique promotional strategies and tips for growing brands, a blog can serve as the next step towards profitability. A small web design or marketing firm can use this platform to provide advice and tutorials for potential customers, and if your blog has a large enough following, may even be a potential source of ad revenue.
Go Forth and Blog!
Once you have established yourself or your brand as an authority in your niche, there is no limit to the ways in which you can profit from a harmonious relationship between blogging and promoting your business. If you continue to create compelling content on a regular basis, comments and social media will take over to form a marketing force all their own—making your business an unstoppable online powerhouse.
Sara Gruber is a self-proclaimed professional millennial with interests in transmedia marketing and storytelling. She likes great TV and movies almost as much as she likes talking about them afterwards.