Blogging is easy, blogging is fun. And what's more…it can help your business in a lot of ways. A blog is a frequent, chronological publication of personal thoughts and web links in the cyberspace. You could call it an e-diary where you can register your thoughts, opinion and comments on anything and everything under the sun that interests you. Though people had been ‘at it' long before the term blog was coined; it has gained currency as an effective medium of communicating over the Internet only recently. The introduction of automated published software like “Blogger” at www.blogger.com has been instrumental in blogging success. A blog or a weblog' is conceptually similar to a website and is accessible to anyone on the Internet.
There are millions of bloggers in the world today blogging away to glory. But blogging can be more than just chatter in the cyberspace. It can be a great tool for boosting your online business's profitability once you've understood how it works and what are its limitations. Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weblog#Corporate for some more information.
How to become a Blogger?
The key to learning how to become a blogger is to start blogging! Easier said than done? Not really. There are several websites that can give you information on how to be a blogger. Blogger.com is one of them. You have three options here to choose from:
- Have a hosted service like Blogger allows you to set up an account and fire away in a matter of minutes.
- A remotely installed blog like movabletype allows you to install on a server for a small fee.
- Desktop blog programs like Radio Userland are installed on your desktop and then uploaded to a host. These are usually desktop programmes that include hosting and upgradation for a certain period of time and charge you a small fee.
You can get more information on blogging resources from http://www.blogroots.com/resources.blog.
Also see: http://www.blogger.com/start
Once you have decided what option you want for setting up your weblog/ blog you are ready to start blogging. It is that easy. It could take a while before anyone will notice your little blog in the corner and take you seriously. But you can cut down this time with some great ideas at: http://help.blogger.com/
offers some great ideas on increasing your blog's readership.
There is a Chinese saying, “ It's a wise man who learns from others' mistakes”. Read others blogs to see what works and what doesn't, what are their writing styles etc. It's a great way to teach yourself and fun too…. you are learning on some one else's expense.
Guidelines for the greenhorn blogger
Here are some simple guidelines for a newbie blogger. Take a chance with these to increase your chances of success.
- Get Blogging: Like I said earlier, the best way to learn blogging is to start blogging.
- Recognize your motivation: Why are you blogging? What do you hope to achieve?
- Link to other blogs: the best way to popularise your blog is to link to other blogs. So link you must!
- Develop a unique style of writing: Developing a writing style is an evolutionary process. Try different approaches and formats until you find one that fits your message, audience, and personal motivations.
- Express your personality... let your humour, your perspective on life, and your values shine in your writing.
- Be regular with your posting: readers will quickly wander away from blogs that are not updated regularly. So this is very important.
More blogging resources are available at: (www.lights.com/weblogs)
How to profit from Blogging?
Now that you have understood what a blog is and how to get blogging, its time to make it pay. Blogging is a great way to enhance your online company's bottomline. It is a popular and an easy medium and has potential of reaching millions.
Here are some tips for you to turn blogging into a serious profitable strategy.
1. Customer Interaction: A blog is a good means to keep in touch with your customers regularly. You can keep them updated on new events, happening in your company, new products and services and other developments. the best part is that you can do it more cost effectively and in much less time than other methods like newsletters, customer updates and customer meetings. The elements of interactivity, community and collaboration are key here. Your blog can also serve as a platform for advertising, promotion and even internal communications. One well-known business example is software company Macromedia's use of blogging to keep customers updated on what's happening with its products.
2. Query management: With a blog you can receive and answer to customer queries more quickly than an email. For potential customers it is very important to have a sharp turnaround and you can do that easily with a blog.
3. Link to other sites: Linking your blog to other similar, but not competing, sites is a great way to get some free publicity and traffic for your online business. It is also one big reason why Search Engines will grab your site in their result pages. Ask any online entrepreneur what getting quality traffic to a website means and you'll know what I am talking about.
4. Get Feedback: Getting feedback from your customers on your products and services, on your company practices and other things is one of the most valuable resources you can build. With a blog, it is not just easier but also time saving for customers to leave feedback for you without filling complicated and mile long forms.
5. Get Google to work for you: Selling ad space is one of the most popular revenue streams for online businesses. With Google's free AdSense service it just got easier www.google.com/adsense. AdSense allows bloggers to display up to three content-specific "ad units" (boxes that can hold up to four ads each) per page. Each time a visitor clicks these ads, you get paid. Need more convincing?
6. Become an affiliate: Your blog can become a cash cow by using the simple idea of becoming an affiliate for other websites. An affiliate basically carries a link to the other site and each time some one clicks on that link, you get a small commission for it.
7. Donations: If you are running a blog that people love to read and keep coming back in hordes, why not ask them for some monetary appreciation?
Put on your thinking cap and let your imagination run unbridled. You will surprise yourself with the number of ideas that will make your blog less of a personal e-diary and more of a digital cash cow. Blogging is a relatively new marketing arena for webpreneurs, but has immense possibility and potential. Be sure to get on to the bandwagon early in the game and reap your benefits later.
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