Every small business owner should position his or herself as a thought leader in their industry or arena of business. Launching a business blog can be an important part of any successful entrepreneur’s business strategy to help meet their business goals. The Internet is driven by links and every blog post is a unique listing in Google, so it’s time to establish social proof of your business acumen by blogging. While blogging has been around for a while some don’t know the intricacies of being successful at it. Here are eight basic tips to get you started on the right track. <em>—Hajj Flemings</em>
<strong>Define Your Niche:</strong> Establishing the specific niche you’re going to focus on is critical. You want to select a subject matter that you’re not only passionate about but is also relevant to the space you want to own.
<strong>Own Your Identity:</strong> Decide whether you’re going to market your blog under your personal brand/name or your business name. Once you make the decision then you want to <strong><a href="http://www.blackenterprise.com/2011/07/06/brand-identity-how-to-centralize-your-identity-online/">own your identity</a></strong>. That means purchasing domain names via sites like <strong><a href="http://www.godaddy.com/search/domains.aspx?isc=goaq2001aa" target="_blank">GoDaddy.com</a></strong> and securing the relevant social network URLs.
<strong>Establish Thought Leadership:</strong> One of the most important aspects of writing a blog is to establish yourself as a thought leader in your niche. Creating content that reinforces you as a thought leader and validates you. This is especially true if you’re in a crowded space and you want to cut through the clutter.
<strong>Make Your About Page Hot:</strong> Believe it or not, the about page of your blog is going to be one of the most viewed pages on your site so make it hot. The reason is people want to know more about who is writing the content. Make sure your about page is current and includes links to relevant content especially if it’s media related. Also, write you’re about page in the third person so that it is media ready, so that they can grab the content without having to translate it. Your about page should provide social proof and establish your credibility.
<strong>Local + National:</strong> Every small business blog should have a local component to it. You want to establish yourself as the subject matter expert in your local community or city. Relating some of your blog content to your community or city can create local media opportunities.
<strong>Make Your Blog Social:</strong> Give your blog wings and make it as easy for others to share your content. Add links to your social networks and plug-ins that allow people to post your blog posts to their Facebook wall or Twitter stream. <strong><a href="http://socialwayne.com/2009/11/15/wordpress-blog-social-media/" target="_blank">Here</a></strong>, is a great article by <strong><a href="http://www.blackenterprise.com/2011/05/12/black-blogger-month-social-wayne/">Wayne Sutton</a></strong> on making your blog more social.
<strong>Link to Others:</strong> Pointing to your data sources validates your information and adds credibility. It’s also important to point to other people’s content; everything shouldn’t just be about you.
These are just a few basic tips about establishing your business blog. For more great blogging tips follow <strong><a href="https://twitter.com/#!/problogger" target="_blank">Darren Rowse</a></strong> and his blog <strong><a href="http://www.problogger.net/" target="_blank">Problogger</a></strong>. In the comment section we would love for you to share your top business blogging tips.