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home | Feature Articles | Start a Blog - its your best New Mar . . .

Start a Blog - it's your best New Marketing Tool
Frank Stankus

"This is a relationship business" we keep hearing everyone say. Well, it's true. So it follows that you have to do everything you can to maintain those relationships. Are you? You're not if you don't have a blog.

If this sounds strange to you, it's certainly understandable. Change is happening at a dizzying pace, and lots of people are unsure, if not outright confused, about the role things like blogs have in their business future.

Well, we're here to tell you that a blog is a tool that you should use if you want to make the most of your business.

Let's look at the reasons why.

First, a blog helps build a community of people around you and your work. People will read your blog only if they have an interest in it, somewhat similar to why they visit your website. But there are several major differences between the two.

  • A blog let's you build on the relationship by offering more informal content than you would put up on a website. This can be as personal or impersonal as you choose. You can, for example, talk briefly about a trunk show you participated in or wax poetic about this morning's sunlight filtering through the trees and how that inspired you to create a new line.

    Retailer JR Dunn has a great blog - that refers people to their website, too.
       Retailer JR Dunn has a great blog - that refers people to their website, too.

    The possibilities are endless. With this additional information, the reader -- who hopefully is a buyer or potential buyer of your jewelry -- has more of a connection to you and hence your work.

  • Blogs are designed to be incredibly easy to update. A MAJOR difference from websites in general. The least techno-savvy person can update a blog on a daily basis.

  • You can also put pictures and even video on your blog -- again, easily. Granted, setting up video links is a bit more involved than simply posting a paragraph or a picture but it's not that difficult. This picture-posting ability allows you to put pictures of your newest designs "out there" almost immediately, without having to make arrangements with your website guy to do it. And you can add more fun things like photos of you at trade shows, walking by your favorite, inspirational beach, or any number of events that flesh out your business story.

  • Now here's an added bonus you probably didn't realize: the more often you put something on your blog, the higher the potential Google rating your name gets. Google ranks sites in many ways, including how many links others have to it, how often it's been accessed and how often new material is posted to it. With the right blogging software, every time you put something on your blog, the software sends out a notification, called spiders, for Google to come take a look.

    That impacts you in a positive way, with a higher Google ranking. Easier to find, easier to do business with you!

    If your regular website isn't optimized (search engine optimization -- SEO -- is the key to google fame and a sub-speciality of many web gurus) your BLOG could Google higher than your website!

    Those reasons should be enough to give you cause at least to consider starting a blog -- and connecting it to your site.

    You don't have to be a slave to it, writing something every day or night. You don't even have to do it when you're not in the mood.

    And you don't have to get personal if you don't want to. What you might want to do is think of it as a means of providing a constant stream of material for your fans. And those are the type of people who make the most loyal customers.

    There are several good blogging programs out there. We looked at several and recommend TypePad, which we use.

    Click on the icon below to get to their site, have a look around and then sign up. You can be "bloggin'" in less than a hour!

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