To be honest, I’m not much of a fashionista. I’m a thrift-store junkie and paying more than $20 for a pair of pants is anathema to me. (To put it more succinctly, I’m cheap, and no doubt my esteemed colleague Amie could tell you all about it.) However, just because I’m a second-hand rose doesn’t mean I don’t like a good deal. In fact, my blood thrills at it – and most other people are the same way. Discounts, clearances, two-fer-ones, the whole nine yards. Everybody likes a good deal.
Sample sales, for those not in the know, are a big thing in the fashion industry, and when a store offers one, a floodgate of deal-getters come rushing in. Basically, it’s when a clothing store decides to sell its samples or discard excess merchandise. The idea is to move product quickly, so the prices are slashed slashed slashed and usually they go like hotcakes. Sometimes they even inspire a bit, of, uh, violence, such as when a riot broke out at a sample sale in London. Sample sale or death? Sample sale please!
Anyway, today I’m going to expound a little bit by explaining how a blog is like a sample sale. Blogging for business might not sound much like getting a sweet deal on Jimmy Choos (and having to fight your way through a feeding frenzy of deal-seekers while you’re at it), but trust me on this.
Blogs are a sample of your knowledge. Just like how a sample sale sells top-notch merchandise cheap, a blog is a little snippet of what you know and can offer as a company for free. It’s advice that you give away at the unbelievable clearance price of zero. While many companies charge for consultations, few charge for access to a blog. (And, really, if anybody does, they’re negating the entire point of the exercise.) Content marketing is all about strutting your stuff for free. While you might have to pay an arm and a leg to get the Internet guru Ian Lurie to consult with you, you can get samples of his delicious advice for free at his blog. (We love you, Ian!)
Blogs move fast. Now, there’s no exact science to how often you should update your blog, and pretty much anyone you ask is going to have a slightly different answer if you ask. However, blogs are moving pieces of content, just like hot sale items move fast from sample sale racks. The merch moves, moves, moves at a sample sale, and likewise the content moves moves moves in a blog. Blogs should never sit still. While there’s no doubt that everybody has a different opinion on how often you should update your blog, all of the experts agree on one thing: never let a blog die.
Blogs bring people in screaming droves to your business. Well, perhaps they won’t be screaming, but a blog is a proven way to increase traffic to your site. After all, see point one – you’re giving away all sorts of designer-quality information for free, right? Well, that attracts people who are interested in what you’re talking about. It invites people to the conversation. It allows you to strut your stuff and interact with potential clients and your peers in an entirely unique way. It’s the backbone of content marketing. Check out this post by Zac Johnson at Basic Blog Tips if you’d rather not take my word for it.
Blogs are a great deal. You give away information for free, which makes the reader happy. The reader visits your site, learns more about what you do, and starts to build a relationship with you, which makes you happy. Just like with a sample sale, getting rid of your merchandise isn’t just so that you can move product – it also is almost like advertising in and of itself. After all, if you get those Jimmy Choos at a low low price and you end up loving them – well, you just might consider purchasing a pair at retail price the next time around. If your readers love your blog… well, they might consider you the next time they’re in the market for your goods and services.
Everybody loves a great deal – and there’s no better deal for businesses of all shapes and sizes than a blog. Blogs are one-concept-fits-all; it’s all about starting that conversation, and blogs are the perennial way to get peers and potential clients talking. And at the end of the day, there’s no better place to hang your (designer) hat.
Latest posts by Laura (see all)
- 7 Tips To Make A Bio Bang - July 24, 2012
- Web Content Gone Wrong: Rehabilitate Your Site, Stat! - July 23, 2012
- A Blog is Like a Silent Warrior - July 17, 2012