Mightier than the Sword: Why Writing and Blogging is Important for Small Businesses
Do actions speak louder than words or is the pen truly mightier than the sword? Getting socked in the head is indeed painful but then again try asking anyone who’s been dumped over text at 4 am in the morning six months into a serious, committed long distance relationship and they’d gladly choose being socked in the head over that. Oops, sorry, was that too much information for you?
Kidding aside, words can be incredibly powerful and not for all the right reasons. We’ve seen in the past few years how ugly and xenophobic rhetoric added with a dash of misinformation can practically tear the fabric of society. And yet, we’ve also seen in recent times how words and the mere act of speaking up can help bring justice into the world, Words, your words to be exact, can be a powerful tool when used correctly and responsibly and as most SEO services can attest, regular and high-quality writing can help bring more traffic to your site.
The power of words
During the run-up to the Brexit referendum in 2016 (gosh, 2016 feels like a lifetime ago, doesn’t it?), one of the most prominent slogan used by figures from the ‘Leave’ campaign was this “We send the EU £350m a week: let’s fund our NHS instead”. The NHS is the UK’s National Health Service, which is equivalent to Australia’s own Medicare. On the outset, that is a valid complaint before it became clear that the £350m figure was grossly inflated at best.
We all know how it eventually ended, the citizens of the UK voted to leave the EU but as I’m typing this, the latest news is that Prime Minister Theresa May has just delayed a vote for the Brexit deal in order to try and shore up more support for her Brexit plan in Parliament. It doesn’t sound that bad until you consider that the deadline for Brexit is on March 29, raising the possibility of the UK exiting the EU without a proper plan in place. So yeah, that one is possibly heading into a disastrous conclusion.
I am of course not advocating for you to pull that kind of stunt but in this world of alternative facts and truth isn’t truth, words, whether they be written or spoken, can be extremely persuasive, not to mention malleable. Even if you’re not exactly writing for a cause, blogging can still have an impact and particularly for small business with little to no recognition, high-quality writing can help get your company in the map.
People like good writing and good writing can help bring more people in
I know this might seem like an unpopular idea in the world with Netflix, YouTube and Twitch live-streaming but writing is still actually pretty popular among the general public and arguably getting more popular. The New York Times for example reported a further rise in digital subscribers, which has been attributed to Trump’s constant attack of the media and the subsequent support for quality journalism in general. The rise of aggregators like Pocket and Longreads also show that people are hungry for some quality reading.
The operative there being the word quality. Hiring good writers or making the effort to try and develop your writing can feel like a sizable investment and it is indeed an investment but it is something that can have a serious payoff in the long run. Just remember that more traffic doesn’t automatically translate to more customers and how to convert those readers into paying customers takes a different set of skills entirely.
Writing as a tool to establish credibility
Say you’re new in the craft beer business and in this type of business where bear snobbery is worn as a badge of honor, trying to convince everyone you’re the biggest know-it-all in the field is a major issue. The best way to achieve this is of course, through your writing. Head into a deep dive on the different types of beer from each culture, what kind of dish should be served with each beer and why drinking your beer straight from the bottle is not a good idea.
Writing can be used as a tool to establish your credibility in the business, convincing your customers that you actually do have a modicum of idea what you’re selling. I mean, you would never have someone unqualified taking care of your colonoscopy and by that same logic, you should never drink beer made by people who can’t even tell the difference between lager and ale.
To turn the same, old testimonial into something better
Every company, even big ones like Apple or Google, relies or at least is affected by online reviews. Less than stellar reviews might affect sales of the latest iPhone or Pixel and glowing ones might do the opposite. For small businesses with little brand recognition and reputation, online reviews and customer testimonials could go a long way into shoring up your reputation and with the use of some quality writing, you can turn those testimonials into something more.
Instead of just having your customers gushing about your company, try to write a comprehensive journey into how your products and/or services have improved their lives. Writing stories like this can lend a personal touch to the bland and boring testimonials and can provide an in-depth look into how professional services do their business, which can help convert a few people into your fold.