Are you considering blogging for your business, but don’t really see the point? Or have you written a few posts, then not seen any return?
You’ve heard that successful businesses should be blogging, but why? And how?
The biggest “why” is connecting with customers and clients. Businesses can blog about the problems their customers face, success stories, how to best use their latest product, or a “peek behind the curtain” with an employee interview.
In every one of these cases, the business is conveying their message while giving the customers some real value.
And while blogging like a boss might not come naturally at first, with a little knowledge and a few posts under your belt, you will be connecting and sharing like the best of ‘em. And seeing the loyalty and sales boosts that come with it!
Five Simple Steps To Start Blogging Like a Boss
“Engagement” is certainly the buzz word of the online world these days. But, every is talking about it because it is incredibly important.
Being engaging doesn’t necessarily mean conversational. It simply means having the ability to capture the reader’s attention. Try a question at the beginning of the article (like the one at the beginning of this article!) to make readers think, relate, and, most importantly, read on!
Questions don’t just have to be at the beginning of the article either. Add a question at the end and encourage people to comment with their opinions on the subject.
If you’re not sure if you’re engaging enough, think of your blog post as a form of social media (which it is). Would your post make someone want to dive in and connect?
Have you ever come across a blog post that appeared to be a never-ending wall of text? Did you make it to the end of that article? Didn’t think so.
Break up your words with some eye-catching images. Add a photo, a text-based graphic, a video, or an infographic that relates to the topic while staying in your brand’s image.
People will be more willing to stay with you through your entire thought when you accompany your words with something interesting to look at.
How long should your blog post be? Well, that’s really up to you. But, whether 300 or 1200 words, you want to keep it straight to the point.
Get your whole idea across without losing your audience by being incredibly focused.
If you have hit 1500 words and feel that you could go on for another 2000, consider breaking up your thought into two or three easily-digestible and hyper-focused posts.
Remember when your mom told you to “just be yourself”? Nothing could be more true as you blog.
Remember that people are reading your blog because they love your writing style, your ideas, and your message. They want to hear from YOU, not who you think you should pretend to be. Be sassy, or silly, or intricate, or grand…just as long as it’s absolutely you and your brand.
In the age of digital marketing, authenticity is the name of the game.
Can you imagine if I started off this post with one point, then drifted to the next, then went back, then threw in a brand new idea in the last sentence? You would rightfully be reading it thinking, “Huh?”
Your thoughts need flow cohesively in an organized way. If they don’t, your audience won’t be able to understand the message you’re trying to convey…and your message is everything.
Now, you don’t have to dig up the notes from your college composition course and start diagraming your blog post.
There are simple tricks to keep everything organized.
• Use clear, simple headings to help your blog posts flow together.
• Leave plenty of white space in your articles, with paragraphs being 3 sentences, max.
• Bold main sentences so that the reader can skim through and pull out highlights before committing to reading.
• Use lists or bullet points (like these) to break up each thought.
Each of these organizational tips encourages comprehension and helps the readers come away with a greater understanding of who you are as a business and, perhaps more importantly, a person.
It’s time to lose the blogging procrastination and frustration, and start putting your message out for all to see. Start blogging like a boss, then tell us all about it in the comments below!
Your small business has an office. You go there every day (probably for too many hours), get what you can done, and then leave wondering if you actually accomplished anything. You read an article about coworking and think it sounds pretty amazing, but know that you’re doomed to stay in the same office rut forever.
Or are you?
Now, more small business owners are freeing themselves from their offices a couple of days a week to reap the benefits of being surrounded by other successful, inspirational business owners. Like one visitor to Suite Spotte said, “It’s like a never-ending, no-pressure networking event. Plus, you actually get tons of work done!”
If you have ever been curious about using a coworking space as your second office, here are 6 benefits to leaving your office behind every once in a while and embracing coworking.
You could go to all the live conferences in the world and it still wouldn’t beat working closely with a group of other business owners and entrepreneurs day after day. Working this intimately together builds trust and confidence in each other, which in turn could lead to an infinite number of business partnership and referral opportunities.
Distractions can run rampant in an office. If an employee comes running in with an “urgent” yet simple question, any focus on that truly important task you were working on before that moment is lost.
There’s something to be said about working alongside a group of like-minded, driven and focused members of a coworking space. They are there to provide just the right amount of inspiration when you require it, yet know that when you’re in “work mode” that they need to stay away. Coworking members know this because they are all in the same productivity boat, creating a one-of-a-kind industrious environment.
Opportunities for Learning
Many coworking spaces hold events for members to help them grow and accomplish more in their personal and professional lives. Often these seminars are given by members of the coworking space, such as the Suite Spotte workshops. Not only is it a great way to get a new perspective or skill, but you also get to learn more about your fellow coworkers and their businesses.
Human beings are social creatures, so when we work in a solitary office, loneliness can set in. In coworking spaces, that never happens. Everyone gives you privacy when you need it, but you can go seek out social interaction during work breaks. Taking frequent breaks to socialize with others can even fuel creativity or inspire a different way to approach a problem.
Meeting Places for Clients
Where are you meeting your clients? If it isn’t beautiful yet rife with any technology you could ever need, you’re in the wrong place. With a coworking membership, you can book an hour or two in a state-of-the-art conference room and instantly impress any client. Not only does having your own meeting space look professional, it will also show your client that you’re innovative and a strong part of the entrepreneurial community.
See the Big Picture
Do you ever have big plans for the day but, when you sit behind your desk for the thousandth time, you seem to fall into the same pattern of chugging away at the details? You work hard all day, but wonder what you actually accomplished. Coworking is the antidote to this phenomenon.
It’s hard to fall into a rut when things are always different, moving, and getting stirred up. Innovative ideas are thrown around, others’ accomplishments are announced, and discussions about big plan are happening all the time. The energy practically forces you to look at the big picture, and take steps towards those big plans you are working toward.
No other work situation gives quite the community foundation and networking potential that coworking does. Leave your office behind and begin to embrace all the benefits coworking has to offer!
Do you have an office and also work out of a coworking space?
Share your experience in the comments below.
Whether your product or service sells depends on one factor, value. Price is really just the monetization of value. For me to be willing to buy what you have to offer, the price has to align with the value I place on it.
Any real estate broker knows that the value of a home is based on what buyers are willing to pay for it, not how much the current owner loves their home, has invested in it, or even how much they originally paid for it.
As business owners, we get caught up in the blood, sweat, and tears we put into bringing our product to market. We allow our BS&T to drive the price. In reality, perceived value is what determines the right price. Before you make the leap to investing a lot of BS&T, find out if the market will reward you for doing so at the level you expect.
Here at Suite Spotte, we know that there are alternatives to the coworking we offer. Prospective members may choose to work at home because in their minds, it’s free. Or they may work at the local library or coffee shop for the price of a fancy coffee. Others may choose to use a coworking space. Those who choose one alternative over another weigh what each has to offer, the investment required, and decide if the return is worth it.
So why pay for coworking if you can work for free at home? Suite Spotte members tell us that the value of coworking exceeds the space we provide (although it’s pretty awesome). The value extends to the business owner members who become part of a collaborative community. The sharing, supporting, creativity, and connecting experienced at Suite Spotte is what differentiates coworking from office-sharing, the coffee shop, or the kitchen table; and therefore, equates to greater value.
How does your pricing compare to the value you offer? Step into your potential buyer’s shoes and take an honest look at the value you offer from their eyes. You’ll find that when you do, your customers will be more responsive to what you have to offer without squabbling about price.
I’ve added solo to my list of four letter words.
Many of us proudly proclaim that we are solopreneurs. We boast about being the sole owner of our business, have no employees, and are doing it on our own. Whether we are financially making it or not is rarely disclosed. We’re out there anyway — the proud party-of-one.
But just how proud are we? Are we meeting the expectations we had for our business? Are we being honest with ourselves? Is it really possible to do it on your own?
If you are doing everything on your own to run your business, you are no doubt leaving money on the table. I’ve never met a business owner who had all the skills required to successfully run a business. Sure maybe you are getting by, but you’re not playing to your strengths, and that’s where real growth comes from.
You say you’re not a solopreneur because you have employees that work for you? If you draw on their strengths and allow them to do their jobs without jumping in and micromanaging them, then you’re right. Kudos to you!
But if you are constantly stepping in and telling them how to do their job your way, even though their way works (or may even be better), then you are still operating solo my friend.
I’ve ripped off the solopreneur badge, and I’m actively building collaborations with other business owners. Join me. Soaring collectively is superior to flying solo.
Interested in learning more about playing to your strengths and building collaborative relationships to make real money in your business? Check out my new book, Rocka Million, A Manifesto for the Gutsy Micropreneur. Available on Amazon in paperback or ebook. It would make a great holiday gift too ☺.