A blog is low cost and effective way for businesses to communicate with its customers. There are basically two types of blogs - personal blog and business blog. A personal blog is an update of what is happening in your life, your thoughts and opinions. Personal blogs are especially fitting for businesses that cater to improving people's lives. For example, a personal blog will not be out of place on the website of a personal trainer, life coach or a financial adviser. In these cases it is possible to incorporate valuable information within personal blog. The personal aspects of the blog will help you establish that human connection with your customers, which is invaluable. A business blog on the other hand provides value to its customers by sharing the business expertise and knowledge. At the same time, it allows the business to keep their customers updated on upcoming events, products and any other news that they wish to share. Both these blog types have their respective use in a business website and a choice between them depends entirely on the type of business. As long as you can keep the content focused enough to provide information and value to your customers, they will keep coming back for more.
Some companies have both a personal blog for its employees and a business blog. Allowing your employees to have their own blog on the company website gives them a sense of being a part of a bigger team and also allows them to directly connect with their respective niche clients. Of course when you allow employees to have their blog on the company website, you have to make sure you lay out the rules for blogging very clearly. Some of the key points you should include in your blogging guidelines for your employees should include:
- Conduct Guidelines - Just as employees have to follow certain conduct guidelines at work, they should be given very clear guidelines on the acceptable online communication and blogging behavior
- Legal liabilities - Employees should me made aware of their legal liabilities for the content they post
- Allowed content - Give them guidelines on the content that they are allowed to post
- Off-limit content - Confidential information and any other blog items that are completely off limit should be very clearly communicated to your employees
- Response for press inquiries - There should be an established hierarchy for response to inquiries from press and all your employees should be made aware of this
Why have a newsletter subscription on your blog
Having an newsletter is a great tool for your business online marketing. As publicity experts have pointed out for years, newsletters let you:
- communicate frequently with a highly specific audience
- establish yourself as an authority and market leader
- enhance your image and credibility; develop good service or product identification
- offer potential users, buyers or members a personalized contact.
Here are some of the ways having an newsletter could help your business:
Build a customer database:
When customers sign up for a newsletter on your website, they provide you with their email addresses. These email addresses can then be used for service and product reminders, promotions and educating your website visitors about your field of business.
Generate new customers:
Generating traffic to your website is essential for generating revenue from your website. Without traffic, you won’t have customers and without customers, you won’t earn revenue. Digging deeper into the website traffic you will find that most sales come from returning website visitors. Newsletters are one of the most effective ways to reach your market, increase website traffic and hence increase sales. If you can manage to capture the email addresses of unique visitors to your website, get them to return to your website through your newsletters. This is achieved by including articles and promotional products and services in the newsletter with link back to their respective pages on your website.
Keep in touch with your current customers:
Remember -Out of sight is out of mind. Customers need to be constantly reminded of your products and services. A newsletter will help you achieve this goal. As compared to a hard copy newsletter or brochure, an online newsletter with links to various pages on your website makes it easy for your customers to visit your website with just a click. The easier you make it for visitors to come to your website, greater the chance that they will. Every time you have a sale or promotion on your website, you can use your newsletter email database to inform your current customers. Especially in these tough economic times, customers are constantly looking to find a deal and appreciate you making the effort to inform them of new promotions.
Build your business brand :
Customers always appreciate an informative newsletter. It makes them feel empowered and hence helps to build a sense of trust. Newsletters are a great way to let your customers know about your industry. If you are able to keep the newsletter content neutral and give your customers a sense that they are getting a picture of the entire industry and not just your products and services, they are not only more likely to read your newsletters, but also to trust your business. Trust and loyalty are the two most important aspects of brand building. Use your newsletters to promote your brand.