Do I need a blog for my ethical business?
My answer to this is a big fat “YES!”.
I know that as an ethical business owner or social entrepreneur, you already have a thousand things on your to-do list, and the thought of adding another might seem like a ridiculous and counter-productive thing to do, but hear me out…
I am no statistician but I would hazard a guess that about 99% of businesses in 2017 have some kind of on-line presence, whether that’s through a website, or via platforms like Facebook or Instagram. It’s how customers and clients find you, and maybe, hopefully, buy your products or services.
A blog doesn’t have to be a traditional written one like this one, there are so many different ways to create content now, and I’ll discuss those now in the next post, but suffice it to say, you don’t have to be a genius writer – you can record a podcast, or a vlog, or even use something like Instagram to tell your story.
The point is that you are getting out there, and creating regular content – you are engaging your audience and your potential customers.
A blog is a fabulous way to get a message out there.
As ethical and social entrepreneurs, we all have a passion and a purpose that drives what we do.
A blog is a great way to convey that purpose, and to inspire other people to care about it too.
My blogging journey started back in 2012 when my family and I spent a year buying nothing new, and I started a very simple free WordPress blog to document it. What started off as a personal and slightly naive challenge to see if we could ‘Make Do and Mend’ for a whole year, ended up changing my life. I found a whole amazing community of wonderful supportive people who cared about the same things I did. The more I learned about the impact of our modern ‘disposable’ society the more passionate I became about doing all I could to limit my own impact and to make changes to my own lifestyle. By sharing these challenges and the things that I was doing, I (unknowingly in the beginning) began to inspire other people to make changes in their lives.
The blog gave me a platform to share my message with the world.
It allowed me to find my voice, to discover a creative side of me that I didn’t even know was there, to connect with other people doing amazing things, and to create ripples of change.
Blogs are also a great way to connect to potential customers.
As ethical businesses we have (at least) two prongs to our enterprises: getting our message out there and creating ripples of change; and also selling our products or services. This is a whole other blog post in itself, but unless we are financially sustainable and generating income, we are limited in the impact that we can have, so we need to face up to the cold hard truth that we need to earn some money!
In order to find customers or clients, people first need to KNOW about us, they need to LIKE what we do, and they need to TRUST us before they will part with their cash.
Very few people will buy on their first encounter with a company – apparently people need between 7 and 14 ‘touch points’ with a business before they buy, and a blog is a fabulous way to generate these touch points in a very genuine and un sales-y way.
The whole point of blog posts is to provide your customers with additional value, to help them with their problems. This builds trust, and people are then far more likely to buy from you when you have something that they need.
Another great incentive to blog is that it will improve your Google rankings and make you more find-able.
I am in no way any kind of expert on SEO. In fact, the phrase SEO makes me want to run away and hide, so I like to keep things super simple.
Google rewards regular, fresh content. If you have a website that was made for you, or that you’ve created yourself, and it is just sitting there unchanged, day after day, it is very unlikely that people will find it via a Google search.
Google just won’t see it, and therefore won’t show it to people.
So you need to be creating fresh content for your website, or updating it, regularly.
And what’s the easiest way to do that?
Given the choice of spending an two or three hours a week working on SEO, or spending that same time creating content that I know will give value to my clients, I know which one I choose every single time!
If all this has persuaded you that really should be blogging but you don’t know where to start, or you’ve started before and then run out of ideas, then I’ve put together a new 10 day live coaching programme, just for you!
It’s a Get Blogging Bootcamp, especially for ethical and social entrepreneurs, and anyone with a story to tell that can change the world. People like you. Starting on the 15th May, each day you will get an e-mail with a short workbook and video to work through and the idea is that by spending just 15-20 minutes a day during the course, by the end you will have a coherent strategy for your blog, a bazillion ideas for blog posts, a schedule of posts for the next three months, AND have hit ‘publish’ on at least one post.
There’s more info here, (or if you just want to cut to the chase, you can sign up here!) or do drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
I truly believe in the power of good stories, good businesses, good blogs, to change the world. I want to help as many people as possible to get their message out their, and create their own ripples of change – will you join us?