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I tell my clients they need to blog, so I decided to set up my own blog and practice what I preach. A blog is a great way to create original content and can share your story with your market, to increase your ranking on Google.

Setting up a blog is easy and in this case, it’s FREE. WordPress has a free version that has limitations but you can easily upgrade once you get the hang of it and see the value. I set this blog up early Saturday morning before my son’s baseball game in about 30 minutes just to show you it can be done. You may choose a template that shows off things you created or products you offer but either way, it won’t take you days to set up.

How to use your Blog

If you want to drive leads to your business, the best and most cost-effective way today is through using Social Media. In the world of Social Media, you are a creator, critic, joiner, spectator or just plain inactive. Creators have the most influence on the web and if your content is strategic, you can reach your audience with a message that will lead them to your company. These blogs can help present your value, educate your market, increase your ranking on the Internet, build awareness of your products and services, and generate leads.

However, just HAVING a blog is not enough. You need to drive traffic to it each day so the ranking goes up and the message is heard by your market. Once you have a dozen blogs written (yes it will take extra work at the beginning), start inviting your supporters to the site and ask them for comments so you know how it is being received. Adjust the look, feel and content based on what you learn, then take it out to the market.

Post a link to your blog on your website and add it to your email signature.  You can find a great selection of link icons at Icon Finder on the web and they are free. Make sure you set the icon to open in a NEW window so people don’t exit your site entirely when they go to your blog. If this sounds strange, just email me and I’ll show you how to do this.

Also, post your blog to Tumblr, StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit and other sites that list blogs for others to find. I did a search on topics like marketing for Small Businesses and then read the articles and comment on them. At the end of my comment, I will post a link to a blog I wrote about the topic and this will bring people from that article to my blog.

I have found that most of my traffic comes each time I post a new blog and it shows up on my LinkedIn page. Remember to share each new blog post with all the groups you belong to as a way of meeting more people and sharing your expertise.

Get started today.

Here is a link from WordPress that shows you how (http://learn.wordpress.com/get-started/) or let me know if I can help you. Just keep in mind that if you START a blog, you have to MAINTAIN a blog. It’s better never to have created a blog, than to make one that is not strategic in its content and kept up weekly. If this is too much for you to take on, I know a lot of great bloggers who will do the work for you so you get the results you want.

Set goals for your blog, determine what measurable results you want to get from your efforts, and what you expect this will do to help you reach the goals of your company. Find someone to own this project and set timetables and deadlines for deliverables. Then get input from your team on what the content will be and a commitment that everyone will support and promote this. Then make it happen.

If you need help, you can reach me at Robert@HuntConsultingDFW.com

by Robert Hunt of Hunt Consulting DFW