Blogging for Business? 5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Selling


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When you start out blogging for business, you’ll keep falling into this trap over and over. You’ll set out to write an exciting and insightful blog about a new trend in your industry. When you read it back you discover you’ve just written an ad for your own product. It’s nothing to be ashamed of; it’s natural to lean blog content in your brand’s favor. Most business blogs are started specifically to drive sales. But writing blogs that just promote your product is a bad habit.

Blogging for business is an opportunity to create a valuable resource. It lets you create content that your customers want to read and share, content that keeps them coming back. Ads disguised as blogs don’t do any of that. At best, they become wasted, unread online space; at worst, they’ll turn customers away.

And here’s why.

It’s Boring

Every writer, whether you’re blogging for business or finally writing that pulp fiction novella, strives to engage readers. We all want to write something that’s enjoyable to read. It is possible to write an effective and entertaining blog that sells a product, but five in a row will send people to sleep.

Customers don’t want to read about your product on your blog. They can do that elsewhere on your website. The easiest way to bore someone is to repeat the same information over and over. If your blog just repeats your other content, your readers will switch off.

It Undermines Trust

Blogging can drive sales because it offers a resource for customers researching purchases. The whole idea is to create content that consumers will read before they decide on what they want to buy. When people research purchases, they rely on trusted sources to influence their decision. They prefer to take the word of other consumers and friends, because they view them as unbiased observers. How can they see your blog as a trusted resource if all it does is sell your product?

Sales Pitches are Scary

Blogging for business is meant to be a way to diversify your brand’s message. Sales on the other hand is aggressive, it can even be scary. You know when you go to a store to browse and an assistant appears out of nowhere to offer help? Don’t you hate it when they just jump into the sales patter when you ask a basic question? That’s how a reader feels when they were looking for a blog and they get a sales pitch. They expect sales from your other output; your blog should be a safe haven of insight and advice.

People Rarely Share Ads

If you wrote a list of blogging for business targets, shares would be right up there. Blogs are ideal content for sharing through social media. People love to share ideas on social media, blogs tap into that and offer bite size and easy to share information. If you have a look at your Facebook or Twitter timeline right now, you will find at least one blog share without scrolling at all. How many manually shared ads can you find? You probably don’t even need to look, you know it’s zero. The only ads that appear in social timelines are the ones that are sponsored by a brand. People don’t share advertisements, they like brand pages. That’s all the conscious promotion they’re likely to give you. But they will share an interesting or engaging blog post.

What Reaction Are You Expecting?

The real question you should ask when you write a sales-ey blog is ‘what do you expect to happen?’ Do you imagine customers reading the blog and thinking ‘I’m convinced, now shut up and take my money’? It doesn’t happen that way. People research purchases these days; online they read an average 10 sources before making a decision. No matter how good a sales person you are, your blog is not going to sell on its own. Of course, it’s no supposed to.

Blogging for business should provide a creative outlet. It should be taken as an opportunity to add value, to engage with customers on real issues and express a different side of your business. If your blog is just on incognito ad it’s a waste of your time. Even worse, you’re wasting your customers’ time too. The difference is, they’ll spot that straight away.

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Republished with author's permission from original post.

Eoin Keenan
Media and Content Manager at Silicon Cloud. We help businesses to drive leads and build customer relationships through online marketing and social media. I blog mainly about social media & marketing, with some tech thrown in for good measure. All thoughts come filtered through other lives in finance, ecommerce, customer service and journalism.


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