20th February, 2019
Trades and blogging aren’t often mentioned in the same breath, but there’s a strong case to be made for tradies jumping into the content marketing game as a way to strengthen their client base.
If you’re like most tradies, each week flies by in a flash and you always feel like you’re running to catch up on tasks. Writing articles for your website is probably low on that list (if it’s there at all).
As such, you probably don’t want to think about adding any extra jobs to your to-do list.
But to grow your business you need to have at least some focus on marketing.
In particular, these days it’s beneficial to have a blog on your website.
Blogs can help you achieve many goals, and are worth the time, money and effort you put into them – provided you handle blogging in a smart way.
Here are some tips you can follow to start building your brand online and developing the client base you need to grow your business.
A blog helps you to increase your website’s visibility, and get more enquiries as a result.
Sam Minio from Watermaster Plumbing developed a blog for his website for this very reason.
“We started blogging as part of a digital strategy,” he said. “We wanted to be found at the top of Google and we understood this was the best way to get there without paying for Google Ads.”
Steve Doubek from Panache Painting started his blog for the same reason.
“My website wasn’t ranking well.
“My web hosts told me a blog would help, and that Google favours sites that are constantly updated.”
Blogging regularly shows search engines that your business is relevant to your customer base.
“Since starting blogging, our site has risen in Google’s rankings, and we’ve been able to stabilise at a good position,” Minio told The Pulse.
Blogging can also help you to build your authority in your field, showcasing your expertise to potential customers.
It builds rapport with people and enables you to connect with audiences and preempt their questions.
To use your time effectively, know your ideal customer. Target your blogs to the specific types of people you want to hire you.
Focus on providing valuable, helpful content that addresses the needs of potential clients.
“Don’t write about what you do; write about the problems people have and how you can fix them,” said Minio. “The goal is not necessarily to sell to a client, it’s to give someone helpful information.
“Provide helpful content for free – think ‘givers gain’.”
If you’re not sure what topics to cover, get ideas from the frequently asked questions you get from clients.
When formatting your blogs, make them reader-friendly, too. Include headings and sub-headings, and break text into short paragraphs. Include quality photographs, too.
Furthermore, incorporate relevant keywords into each of your blogs, as they will increase your chances of bettering search engine rankings on areas that drive the most traffic.
If you don’t have time to write the blogs yourself, there are lots of content creators out there who can develop the articles for you.
Minio and Doubek both outsource the work, although work with the writers to ensure they get content they’re happy with.
“We’ve engaged a company that assists with our blogging, and while we work closely with them, they handle most of the process for us,” said Minio.
After speaking with the writers about keywords to target and ideal topics, Minio leaves them to create an initial draft.
“After checking this over, it gets finalised and optimised with keywords, then published online.
“We also share the blogs on social media.”
Doubek follows a similar process.
“I share the blogs on Facebook, to my business page, and boost this at times with Facebook ads to get more people visiting my site,” he said.
Blogging involves an investment, and takes time to build, but you need to stick with it.
“Be persistent and consistent. Content should be seen as an asset to your website; one that builds over time,” said Minio.
He also advises tradies not to expect to see a dollar-for dollar return on the money they spend on blogging.
“A blog post about ‘How to fix a leaky tap’ may get 100 views, but might not lead to any sales.
“It may be seen by people all around the world, but not the people in your local community who have a leaky tap.”
However, if you put the effort into blogging, and find out what people search for and create content around this, you will see results.
“Google is the #1 source of leads for tradies, and does not give away Page 1 for nothing,” said Minio.
Start taking steps to create a desirable blog today, though, and you could end up with a top ranking site before you know it.