The university world calls it ‘publish or perish’ and while I wouldn’t go that far, a blog can be a great way to promote your business, boy band or just yourself… and how? Your blog can help you…. 1- Demonstrate your expertise. Do you fancy yourself as becoming the ‘go to person’ in your field? One person who used his blog to achieve this is Karl Deeter of Irish Mortgage Brokers. He went from being a relatively unknown mortgage broker to appearing on TV, radio and being quoted all over the Irish media (in the space of two years). How? He made clever use of his blog to comment on basically everything and tie it in with finance. Have a look at it: it started out with humble text-only origins and now it is blogging nirvana material: video clips, excerpts of newspapers where he is quoted and podcasts. 2- Increase your website’s rankings in Google. Search engines like Google love fresh, new content (assuming your blog is integrated in an SEO appropriate way on your site). 3- Show off your passion for what you do. Most people couldn’t be bothered writing a blog. That’s why you should. Whatever your particular niche is – how many people in your area are blogging? If there are very few, or better still nobody – you will have the ‘first mover advantage’. 4 – Position yourself to attract the kind of clients and business that really excites you (e.g. most business I know have a bread and butter base, but secretly pine to develop an aspect of their business that is currently less than 10% of what they do). By sharing your passion and capacity for that niche part of your business, can only help generate more enquires for that. 5- Learn more about your customers’ needs and wants. The great thing about social media (like a blog) is that the two-way interaction with your customer base allows you to shape your service or product around your actual customers needs (as opposed to what you perceive their needs to be). 6- Generate business. If you position it cleverly (you can use it to generate ‘calls to action’ = potential sale). See the end of this blog for an example. 7- Build a community of supporters and advocates. If you think your particular passion is too quirky to generate a large following… well think again…how popular do you think a blog called “Stuff White People Like” would be? A mere 68 million hits (and a book) last time I checked. 8- RIP (Rant in Peace) to those who really want to listen to you. While the view may be pleasant from your high horse – let’s face it – it is far more pleasurable to be the ranter than the rantee. It is best not to overdo your ranting on your particular bug bear on those who love and care for you. But once your blog is well-written and interesting, there are potentially squillions of people on the World Wide Web who share your particular concerns and might even go out of their way to hear what you have to say. So are you blog-writing ready and ripe? When you read blogs or articles related to your field, do you find yourself saying things like.. • Can’t believe people believe this stuff…… hey this dude isn’t even a qualified… • Can’t believe I’m not blogging. • I know more than this blogger. Bloggers and non-bloggers fall into two types “Fools rush in where perfectionists fear to tread.” People most likely to blog tend to: • Realise that becoming an expert is a journey not a destination. • Have the humility to accept corrections and comments from readers with grace. • Are eager to get on and be seen as the ‘credible expert’ in their field. People most likely not to blog tend to be: • Perfectionist types who are in fact experts in their field, with a wealth of information worth sharing. • Those who secretly crave the glory of the TV slot, but hope somehow to be magically head-hunted to comment on Matt Cooper or Prime Time. But that doesn’t happen my lovelies. Not even in the movies. • Helpful types who are happy to lash out “free advice” as though they had not spent years investing in learning their craft. While they are happy to dole out solid, useful advice to the willing for free, they are not still confident enough to hit the ‘’publish’ button. • Waiting for the “right time”, or the perfectly crafted blog. Afraid to dip their virgin blogging toes in the murky webby waters, they hover in the ether, with an interesting mix of being both a little bit jealous and a little bit superior to those who are already doing it. [I say this as this was me I’m all of the above: a recovering perfectionista and a closet blogger]. VOTE for this post HERE and win great prizes! This post is part of the SugarTone: Sweet Business Blogging Contest.