In 2014, 18,300,771 new WordPress.com blogs were created, yet only 31% of Fortune 500 companies and 46% of the Inc. 500 were hosting a corporate blog. Blogging is no longer reserved for wanna-be writers, techie teens, or a select few big brands. Blogging is a new form of 21st-century leadership. Below are a few reasons to start a blog in 2016.
Not only has blogging become an expectation of the next generation customer, but blogging is one of the most powerful brand building tools for solopreneurs, hustling start-ups, and established enterprises. There is no better strategy to position your brand as an authority than blogging consistently valuable content for your customers.
Showcasing your expertise, high search engine ranking for a keyword, and delivering strong value to customers should be reason enough to start a blog. but if you are looking for even more incentive, consider these three reasons.
As a blogger myself, I have personally experienced and continue to leverage the brand-building power behind each one of these elements.
New York Times bestselling author and entrepreneur, Tim Ferriss, recently said in an interview, "I'm willing to write blog posts that are 15 or 20 pages long for free. If I want to learn more about a given subject in a week than I could in a year, all I have to do is write a blog post. And then look at the comments. I'm not doing it just for the story or to get attention. I'm doing it for the takeaway."
Blogging is a catalyst for learning. Blogging provides you the opportunity to research a topic, think critically to condense your research and thoughts into an actionable takeaway, and then make that takeaway available internally for colleagues or externally for customers.
Related Read: One Man's Inspiring Story That Reminds Us Of The World-Changing Power & Privilege of Writing
In April 2010 at age 30, Dan McLaughlin quit his job and with zero previous experience in golf, decided he wanted to play well enough to join the PGA tour. Based on the research of psychologist K. Anders Ericsson and highlighted in Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, Dan's goal is to dedicate 10,000 hours of golf practice in order to become a professional player in six years.
Dan uses his blog, The Dan Plan, to transparently document his journey as he discovers how practice translates to success. McLaughlin's blog keeps him accountable to everyone who follows his journey which has a little more than 3,000 hours to go on the 10k countdown.
Blogging offers built-in accountability. Invite your customers into your business's story so they can keep you accountable to the mission. Jim Brett, president of West Elm, said it best in a recent Inc.com article, "Being transparent about how and where your products are made, for example, will help you distinguish your business, especially from the overwhelming, anonymous, mass-produced products sold online with no backstory."
Related Read: 4 Limiting Beliefs You Need To Shatter To Finally Start A Blog
The #AskGaryVee Show is a video blog on YouTube where self-taught wine expert, serial entrepreneur, and CEO of VaynerMedia, Gary Vaynerchuk, answers five questions per episode from his fans about marketing, social media, and entrepreneurship. Vaynerchuk uses batching to process similar tasks that require similar resources in order to streamline their completion.
After filming one episode, Vaynerchuk turns the audio into a podcast episode, one question turns into a standalone video, a rant turns into a blog post, any clip has the potential to get rolled into a short film, and every episode (166 and counting) was used to create Vaynerchuk's fourth book published by HarperBusiness.
Blogging has exponential exposure power when batched. Bloggers can turn one piece of content into several pieces of content that can be distributed on various platforms to maximize exposure and customer influence.
You rob the world when you neglect to share your unique expertise. Offer your work to the world. You may not change the world with a blog post, but you can change someone's world and that should be enough to blog today.
Question: Have you considered launching or relaunching a blog? Why or why not?
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This article was originally posted on Ryan's Inc.com column, Next Generation Insights.