The Main Reason You Should Have A Blog?
I didn't work enough at developing a blog to see any results when I had my firm. This points up the fact that it is a long range project. The sooner you start the sooner you get results. My first blogs were on Blogger and later Tumblr. I was attracted to the 'free' part of the equation. Both are good blogging platforms. Blogger, a Google offering, lends itself a bit more to text and has more features. Tumblr shows off photos better, which I think the many users of Tumblr would agree with. WordPress, which I have not used, seems to be very popular these days, so it's worth investigating. They all work a lot like developing a website - pick a theme that will control fonts, colors, and organization of the page, then start adding content. It is pretty easy. Of course, a service like Weebly* includes a blog, which makes the integration tighter. However you can always link to your third-party blog in your menu system if blogging isn't part of your website's capabilities.
Why bother with a blog? Well, first, a website is the new color brochure - expected. A blog gives you a way to keep this marketing tool current in a way you could never afford to do with a color brochure. I think you need both, website and blog. The website gives you a place to display static and historical information - galleries of the best photos of every project, your philosophy, your contact data. The blog gives you a place to show off your work-in-progress through photos and announcements. You can also post information that's helpful to your clients and prospective clients and use this as a way to build a relationship through the process I describe here. Don't wait for discovery; that may never happen. Send email with links to your past blog posts as part of an individualized process of periodic "touches" that focuses on what is important to your prospect.
A blog gives you a way to bring folks back to your site and it gives folks a reason to return. I think it is pretty hard to convince a prospective client of your value with just one visit. With a blog your site becomes like an advertisement that builds your brand through repetition.
Another advantage of a blog is that Search Engine Optimization [SEO], which is difficult to begin with, is even more difficult with a static website. People searching for information on a topic are more likely to find your information on that topic if you have a wealth of content. Every blog post creates another page and another opportunity to mention the keywords that you want to be identified with.
But the main reason to have a blog is to draw people back over and over to see what's new in your "brochure".
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