Who knew the power of blogging would explode like it has? It seems like everyone has a blog now, from stay-at-home moms to chefs to local business owners. Blogging is a powerful Internet marketing tool for local businesses as it gives you a new, yet subtle way to promote your company.
Think of a blog as a way to communicate to the local community without all the business jargon. The point of a blog should be to put out information only. Write about relevant topics that relate to your business and give important facts that people want and need to know. Avoid being a salesman in your blog or people won’t read it. But provide an invaluable resource that people trust and you will build credibility within your community and generate more traffic.

5 hidden benefits of blogging for local business

Change your perspective. Blogging forces you to examine your industry from all angles, not just as a provider of services. Through writing a blog, you will shift from a “distributor” viewpoint to that of a consumer. You will learn what your clients truly want and need, and how to best meet their needs. You will learn how to experiment and play with your blog as a portal of information, determining which avenues work best for reaching your local community.
Improve your writing skills. We aren’t saying you need to be a best-selling author in order to have a successful blog. But the importance of having clear and concise writing skills is a benefit that can help with any business across the board. From advertising to print and online media, the better your writing skills, the better you can convey the appropriate message both vocally and in print.
Transform your sales pitch. As you become more familiar with the products and services you are writing about, you will discover new ways to appeal to the consumer, which will change your sales approach.
Stay on top of current trends. Blogging forces you to always be on top of the latest news in your industry. By being among the first to know of a new product, service, or piece of information, you will establish yourself as an expert in your field and people will continually seek your blog first for the most current news. For your company, this constant intake of knowledge will allow you to be a pioneer in your field, adjusting your products and services to stay ahead of the competition.
Feedback. This is probably one of the greatest benefits as it allows you to test a market without costing you a dime. Once you have built a substantial amount of readers, a blog is a fantastic avenue for introducing a new product or service. Use your blog to determine interest for something new your company wants to do. Based on positive or negative feedback, you can then fine-tune your new idea based on what your consumers want. This is an easy way to learn how to give your consumers exactly what they want.
If you provide relevant information, people will find your blog and value what you have to say. Sit down with your colleagues today and develop a blog marketing strategy that will bring your local business to a new level. The method is up to you: you can have one designated writer who maintains the blog, or many contributors. Just remember that consistency is key, so you need to make a commitment to posting at least once a week.
About the author: Chris Marentis is the founder and CEO of Surefire Social a local search marketing company. and a resource for Local SEO Marketing.