Monday, October 27, 2008

Using Blogs to Improve Your Business

One of the many benefits of business blogs is their ability to connect with the readers of them. Whether it’s with customers of a company, potential new clients or simply visitors looking to see what’s happening in that particular industry niche, business blogging is an instant way to connect with your target audience.

Yet this works both ways. While there’s no doubt that business blogging can offer an invaluable way for businesses to connect with their customers, bloggers can also connect with businesses and offer insights into where they’re going wrong.

With the power of a large following that many bloggers now have, they can virtually make or break a new product or service with a scathing review. Once that review or comment is online, it’s instantly available to millions of readers worldwide – a powerful number in anybody’s book. Therefore, knowing what’s being written is just as important as what you’re writing.

One of the best ways to interact with the blogosphere is by reading different blogs by leaders in their field. They don’t necessarily have to be in your particular business niche, either – the best bloggers write about topics that can be transferred into any business model.

For example, the emerging trend online at the moment is social media. While the basics of social media have been around for a few years, it’s only now that the medium is being exploited fully to enhance business use. One of the foremost bloggers in this field is Chris Brogan, who not only writes about social media, he encapsulates all that social media is about with consistently useful advice on how to use it more effectively, both on a personal and professional level.

Another blog similar to Brogan’s but from a marketing perspective is that of Seth Godin. His outspoken manner isn’t always everyone’s cup of tea, yet for out of the box thinking and fresh spin on old ideas, you can’t go far wrong by reading Godin’s blog. His books on marketing are bestsellers, so you know the information will be worthwhile.

Perhaps one of the best and most thought-provoking blogs for any business owner is by Howard Lindzon. A self-made entrepreneur who manages a hedge fund and continues to lead the field in new ventures and innovative thinking, his blog posts are not for the faint-hearted. What they are, though, is a collection of some of the best insights into being both passionate and unafraid to take risks when it comes to succeeding in business.

These are just three particularly strong blogs in an impressive worldwide blogosphere. To truly benefit from all that blogging can offer, however, they are excellent starting points that you can begin to build a varied and knowledgeable reading base. The added benefit is that as well as offering excellent business views and opinions, reading more blogs will invariably improve the quality of your own blog. And that can never be bad.