Using your blog as a sales sidekick & how
One of the questions I discuss most with clients, especially those just starting a business, is what kind of content or blog posts she should write.
As part of my work, I’ve seen a great deal of websites, especially those in the spiritual, healing and wellness category. I’m keenly aware that many entrepreneurs struggle with this area.
Some blogs I’ve seen are very personal in nature, where the entrepreneur uses it to voice her pain or find healing. Other blogs are unfocused and don’t aim at any purpose in particular, making it feel like the entrepreneur isn’t trying to sell anything. And then there are blogs that miss the mark because the angle they’ve chosen to talk about their work isn’t resonating or engaging with people.
That’s not to say these approaches are wrong. But in terms of developing a blog that converts website visitors into clients, there are more effective approaches that I will teach you how to integrate.
A lot of business development coaches will try to steer entrepreneurs into doing quite drastic things. I’ve worked with clients who’ve been advised by coaches to stop offering free content, or to steer their content down a particular niche that have nothing to do with who they really are. Or, they may direct the entrepreneur to adhere to a fail–safe editorial formula, by writing about the “Top 10 Ways”, “5 Tips” or “4 Reasons To.”
At times, I have been very much against the hiring of business coaches because a lot of them are generalists by nature. They don’t really know how to help you be more you, but they do know how to help you be more like them. Rather than hiring generalists, I advise clients to work with specialists: marketing consultants, SEO experts, sales conversion analysts, copywriters and of course, designers. Or, they could work with mindset teachers or their Guides, where they would receive specific help that’s tailored just for them. I’ve seen too many occasions where entrepreneurs end up losing their identities after working with generalists, in favor of a direction that was assigned to them by their coach.
What does that have to do with blog posting? A lot.
In the first example, the coach advised my client to set up a high–end coaching program sold on a one–on–one basis. At the same time, that coach also advised my client to remove much of the free content on her site. She was also advised to remove all of the information regarding how she performs her work.
I saw it coming from 50,000 miles away: her readers and potential clients would never get to know her well enough in order to invest in an expensive program. My analogy was this: how do you get someone to marry you before he or she could date you?
This is the usefulness of a blog if your revenue comes from high–end coaching programs or products: your potential customers really have to get to know you. They do this by going through your blog. From looking at your posts, they’re trying to help themselves answer these questions:
• Do I like this person and her personality?
• Does this person know what she is talking about?
• Is she trustworthy and organized?
• Can I trust this person to take care of me?
• Will I truly gain what she promises in return?
Some business coaches will advise the client to do all of their sales on a one–on–one level — meaning that when the entrepreneur gets a potential customer on the phone, she has to do a scripted dance of the ABC (Always Be Closing. Here’s looking at you, Glengarry Glen Ross). In the beginning, entrepreneurs may be up to the task of doing this dance. But after a while, the effort starts to feel very weighted. This happens because in addition to selling the program, the entrepreneur is also having to prove herself and try to be liked every step of the way.
If the entrepreneur isn’t offering the who and what ahead of time, delivered in a consistent manner through free content, he or she is left to sell the who, what, where, when, why & how all at the same time. That not only dilutes the sales effort but it also drains the entrepreneur’s energy and focus.
The blog ought to serve as a sidekick to your sales effort on a long term basis. Constantly talk about who you are, what you offer, what you’re about, what are the problems you solve, and sometimes, how you do your work. Give people lots of frames of references. Then, when you are ready to sell something, the focus is on the why.
Communicating the why is an art, and in the right circumstances, it can and should take up most of your sales copy. It doesn’t matter how successful one is. A business never stops talking about the why. The crux of what Don, Peggy and Ted do in Mad Men? Summing up the why into a few eloquent words.
Let’s review how to use blog posts to market yourself:
• Teach something or impart knowledge. Share content to help potential customers get inside your head or get to know you better. Be sure that the content is relevant to the products & services you are offering. Stay focused on the subject, and develop a pattern of things you talk about. Discover the subject areas you’re very passionate about and relay that high–voltage passion to your audience.
• If you teach in your blog posts, be sure you offer products and services at the next revenue level. Free teaching content ought to lead to paid e–courses, books, events, individual training, coaching, etc.
• Share a personal experience you’ve had and how you overcame it. Show potential customers the after effects of what you promise. Don’t use the blog to voice your pain but rather, write about the experience after you’ve healed. Communicate from a position of strength and empathy of having been there before.
• If you are a healer, use your blog as a media platform and teach your knowledge. Widen your audience if you are writing books and appearing in mainstream media.
• Highlight one aspect of your product or service, and talk about it deeply and from many different angles. Take one of those points and really get into why a potential customer should pay attention or purchase what you’re offering.
• Market the problem. Talk about one of the problems you solve from several different angles, and really get into the pain of the problem. Offer your service or product as the solution, and be ready with a persuasive call–to–action to inspire people to take the next step. It will help your sales tremendously to have the art & science of marketing the problem down pat. I will discuss this in an upcoming blog post.
In summary, whatever you do as your business model, carve out a small section of that and carry it over to your blog posts. The blog serves as a place of foundational sales work. It’ll help communicate who you are and what you have to offer, and provides a sample of what to expect should a client want to work further with you.
Hi, I’m Ana Coeur
I teach entrepreneurs how to create their business straight from their soul. I offer a complete Intuitive Business Suite to help you create, design, write and sell all from your intuition. Here’s the services you can take advantage of to empower your business: Intuitive Web & Brand Design, Intuitive Copywriting and Intuitive Selling. If there’s anything I can help you with, I would love to hear about it! You may email me at anaintuitivepicture.com
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