In the late nineties, as an engineering magazine editor, I would often talk to industrial companies who still didn’t have a website, and were realising that they couldn’t get away with not having one much longer. What’s more, with their competitors having had one for some time, they were already at a disadvantage which it would be hard to overcome. It had been a bad decision not to go along with this new idea, as many were having to admit.
Ten years later, I’m getting the same feeling about business blogs. Some companies have had them for a while, and are seeing the benefits in terms of website traffic and customer engagement. Others ‘get it’, but just can’t seem to get around to it. And of course there are those who think blogs are just a fad, and they’ll be glad they didn’t waste time and money on them. These are the same types of company which only reluctantly created their first website in 1999, and only then because everyone else seemed to have one. Bad decision.
I think that every business should have a blog. Now.
I believe that customers are starting to expect this sort of interactive relationship, and the longer you put off launching one, the worse it will look for you. They expect more informal, unstructured communications from you, and they expect to be able to reply and hear from other customers. We’ve already helped Insider Programme members set up blogs, and I see the benefits they’re getting first-hand.
If you think “But what on earth could we put in a blog?”, have a read of 31 Blog Post Ideas For Small Businesses. It’s been written by a guesthouse owner in the Caribbean, whose business I assume is probably somewhat smaller than yours. No excuses.