by Neena Nandagopal | Featured Contributor
One of the easiest (and cheapest) ways for business owners to reach their audience is through blogging.
Yet I am continuously surprised at how many entrepreneurs shy away from starting a blog.
And my response is this:
“I know that you don’t think of yourself as a writer. After all you do have a business to run.
And, obviously, you are very busy – which is a good thing.
But as a business owner, marketing is part of your job description.
And blogging is a very effective form of marketing.
So, what can we do to make it easy for you to start blogging regularly?”
While my clients come from many industries – their answers are quite similar.
These are the 5 biggest obstacles that keep entrepreneurs from using a blog to market their business.
Luckily, they are all easy to overcome.
Obstacle #1: I Don’t Know How To Update My Site
The technical side of blogging may seem scary. But most blogging platforms are now very user friendly.
Sure, you can get someone to set up your site – but you need to understand how to use it.
The most important reason is because it is expensive for you NOT to know.
To look “fresh” you should add new content to your site regularly.
Knowing how to update your site empowers you to either do it yourself or hire the right people to do it for you.
Obstacle #2: I Don’t Know How To Work With Images
In blogging, images are important.
You use images to illustrate your posts. So, there are some image basics that you should understand.
First and most important, familiarize yourself with the legal issues about using photos that you did not take.
Either use your own photos or find permissible photos that you can use.
Second, learn the basics of resizing, cropping, and adding a few words to a photo. These can add visual interest and really make your pictures pop.
Services like Picmonkey and Canva make it very easy to work with your photos even if you are not a pro.
Obstacle #3: I Am Not A Writer
This is actually a good thing.
Writing for the web goes against the grain of what we learned in high school English.
When you blog, you should write like you talk.
A light conversational style is a lot easier to read online than huge paragraphs with big words.
Learn to write headlines that grab attention and keep your writing simple.
Obstacle #4: I Don’t Know Anything About Search Engine Optimization
Using good search engine optimization (SEO) is how you let the search engines know what your site is all about.
When you write a blog post, you are writing for two audiences: real people and search engines.
Writing for real people is easy – you say what you need to say to get your point across.
But when it comes to search engines people seem to think that there is a magic formula that they need to use to rank well.
Recently, the search engines have come down hard on websites that try to “game” them. Meaning that if a website uses an underhanded technique to get to the top of the search results – they will actually be penalized and either get dropped altogether or get pushed way down.
You don’t need to be a search engine expert to be a blogger.
Just remember to use your keywords in your article just enough so that the search engine robots can figure out what your article is about and rank it accordingly.
Don’t overdo it – but don’t forget them either.
Obstacle #5: I Don’t Have Time To Blog
Blogging for your business may seem like a huge time commitment.
But you can set your own blogging goals to fit your available time – it is entirely within your control.
If your goal is to make your site look current and active – you can commit to write one blog post per month.
That is only 12 articles per year.
If your goal is to generate huge amounts of website traffic – then you will need to commit to blog more often.
Pick your schedule, create an editorial calendar, and stick to to it.
Don’t Let Fear Hold You Back
The more you blog, the easier it gets. Don’t wait for perfect – just get started and learn as you go.
She is passionate about giving creative and talented women concrete guidance on how to establish an online business that is in line with their lives.
Her services include everything from blog coaching packages to creating individualized policy and procedure manuals and business processes.
Neena believes that working more efficiently is the key to business success. However, her philosophy is that time management is outdated. Instead, she works with her clients to manage their focus and attention, because that is what brings maximum results – both online and offline.
When she is not working, Neena enjoys spending time with her husband, four teenage children, and her little shih-tzu.