It seems that more and more businesses are understanding that they need to have a blog whether they are practicing law, or selling brownies. They have heard that “blogging” is a great way to close the gap between businesses and consumers, so they picked their software of choice and added a blog to their site.
Though this is a step in the right direction, one step doesn’t get you all that far. From what I have seen, my small business blogs sit unused, unnoticed, and unimportant. So, in this post I want to identify a few small businesses who “get” blogging and hopefully help those that don’t take a few more steps in the right direction.
Meet our featured Small Business Bloggers….
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I first ran into GJEL through Kaitlin Janusz who is a frequent visitor of Hyperlocalblogger.com . She handles the blog, and all social media work for the GJEL. Their blog is updated weekly, and ranges on topics from “Legal Humor” to “News for Law Students”. Ultimately, Kaitlin has been able to take this California Personal Injury Firm with 19 locations and give it a personality. Which is (INHO) one of the main focuses for a business blog. When you are able to give a business a personality, people feel more comfortable contacting and dealing with that business. In the words of John Buscall, “Think of your blog as a place where people get a chance to see beneath the sheen of corporate copy that usually covers all your business communications.”
I can’t even remember how I cam across this pizza company, but I am sure glad I did. Avalanche Pizza has won more awards, and has been featured in more places than the snuggie blanket. They do a very good job on keeping up with local news in the pizza arena, and you can see the updates right from their home page. This isn’t the reason I choose them though. The owner of the company recently started a personal pizza blog called PizzaGoon.com and that my fine friends, is the reason they were chosen.
John Gutekanst, the owner of Avalanche Pizza, uses his new blog to share a wide variety of fantastic pizza recipes, “how to” videos, fun experiences in his pizza travels, and much more! The reason I find this respectable is that in most cases, successful business blogs are written by a hired hand or the “company techie”. There is nothing wrong with the mentioned format, but when the owner of the company spends time blogging and does a good job at it, I’m impressed. It shows that the business is still very near and dear to the management… which is always a sign of a solid company. So, business owners, it’s time to step up and start blogging. You are the one who built your company, and you should take the opportunity to talk about it on occasion. If you can’t do so regularly, then squeeze a post in to your blogger when you can.
I first ran across this UK based company on a Mashable’s writeup a few month’s ago. I was intrigued by the fact that this local business made the jump from being a local farm shop to a respectable online community through blogging and pod-casting. In their own words they say, “With thousands of listeners from all around the world, and over fifty 5-star reviews on iTunes, it seems that our audience enjoys listening to the shows as much as we enjoy making them.” That is pretty amazing considering the subjects that they are talking about wouldn’t usually be considered all that news worthy. Wiggly Wigglers makes the list because they took the normal (the category that most businesses fall under) and made it exciting. In doing this, they took a rural business and reached a much larger audience and in turn, can now sell their products online as well as at their farm house.
Mike Blumenthal is a small business owner who understands one very important thing when it comes to blogging. If you want to build a community, people have to talk and you have to talk back. Mike blogs about Google Local Search and is one of most knowledgeable people on the subject in the world. This is not why he is making the list though. His blog makes the list because he takes the time to write back to pretty much every comment that is left on his posts. This can be extremely time consuming, but encourages great discussion and dedicated followers. It is definitely one of the factors that has lead to the blog’s success as an “authoritative local search site”.
Small businesses have such a wonderful opportunity with a blog. It is a creative door that many people will enter through to find your business if you can use it correctly. So, start taking a few more steps in the right direction, and you might find that blogging for your business is a fun way to talk about your “baby” that you have grown from an idea into your bread and butter.