Have you considered starting a company blog? Wondering if it is still a relevant, effective marketing tool? The answer is a resounding YES!
People are looking for free information on the web. When you have a product or service, the best way to get that information to your prospective market is through a blog. Blogs continue to offer great value for small business and a great online marketing strategy.
If you don’t already have a custom domain name for your business, you should at least consider reserving a domain name for your blog. Setting up a blog on your own site requires a little more technical knowledge but gives you full control. You can setup a blog directly at WordPress but you will forfeit the control you would have on your own site.
Another option is to set up a simple blog at Posterous. Here you can have a place to post stories, photos, videos, MP3s, and files. My advice is that you weigh the pluses and minuses to all of these options. Take some time to compare them and do what makes sense for your business. Be aware that you may be taking on a sizable task. You may want to consider engaging a marketing consulting business to help get you going.
A key element to a successful blog is awesome content. Define a focus for your blog and write content that is engaging and that people will enjoy. What is your particular expertise? What kernels of information can you share that your audience will find interesting and even educational? Writing about things that you are interested in is not only going to be more attention-grabbing and compelling, but an easier task when it is driven by enthusiasm. A blog requires a long term investment of time (and resources), and you don’t want to be stuck writing about things that bore you.
Think about how you can make it easier for your readers to help promote your content. Consider installing helpful plug-ins, such as a TweetMeme button, which makes it easy for people to re-tweet your posts on Twitter. Experiment with plug-ins to add to the functionality of your blog, but keep it simple. Keeping your blog focused will make it easier for your readers to use and prove to be a strong component in your small business marketing campaign.