Yesterday I spoke about ways to use content marketing if you don’t have a blog. But what if you do? How do you put that blog to work for your direct selling business?
As a direct seller, you may be considering using a blog to establish yourself as an expert, and generate new leads for your business. It’s a great idea, and a fantastic way to build more exposure for your personal brand and your business. When you decide to blog, however, there are certain things you must include to make it effective.
This all goes back to your strategic plan for social media…what do you want to accomplish? What is your goal? Once you’ve decided that, then you can set up what’s called a “conversion objective” for your blog. That’s a fancy way to say “What do I want people to do at my blog? What is the ultimate action I want them to take that will benefit my business?” Once you’ve made that decision, you can add the elements that enable readers to complete the conversion objective.
- Newsletter Sign-Up: For a blog, your main conversion objective should be to gain subscribers who opt in to your newsletter so that you can market to them more directly. So if you want them to subscribe, you need a way for them to do that. The best way is to set up a subscription widget in the sidebar of your blog, which links readers to a page where they can leave their name and email address in order to receive your newsletter. Here’s the newsletter service I use. (Disclosure: affiliate link) Your newsletter service should make it easy to pass data directly from your blog to your list. If you’re not ready to invest in a newsletter service, then add a manual email form to your blog (it emails you the info someone enters), which allows you to collect data and add it to your mailing list manually.
- RSS Feed/Email Subscription: You also want people to be able to hear from you regularly, even if they haven’t yet taken the step to subscribe to your newsletter. So it’s a good idea to include a “subscribe to the blog via email” link. Most people who choose to subscribe to a blog prefer to do so via email, rather than RSS. Free services such as Feedburner make it easy for you to set this up. And then you should occasionally provide links within your posts to subscribe to your newsletter, for people who subscribe to your blog by email, and may not visit the actual site. You should also include an RSS link for those who prefer to add your blog posts to their Google, My Yahoo page, or other reader.
- About Page: It’s essential that your blog help people get to know you. If people read a valuable post you’ve written, often one of the first things they’ll do is look for an about page to see more about the source of the information. In that page, you should talk about who you are, your interests, and how those interests led to your business. It’s also a great idea to give folks an idea of what kind of information they can expect should they decide to subscribe to your blog. And ALWAYS include a picture, too. That’s what people connect to.
By focusing on your conversion objectives, you ensure that your blog works for you. What do you think? What have you included on your blog, to help you meet your conversion objectives? Looking forward to reading your comments!
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