Sep 8, 2010

Blog for leads, write for ideas

There’s something very cathartic about blogging. You can’t simply write one article and walk away. Every week you have to come up with new, fresh and interesting content. It’s a lot of work, but it’s also highly rewarding.

I have been writing articles and blog posts regularly for the past 6 years. I started the practice initially as an alternative to cold calling. I absolutely hate cold calling, and I needed another way to generate leads. So I created an email newsletter, and started to produce articles that I thought would be interesting for my market.

The practice paid off. Within a year I found a rhythm, and each article was generating new clients. We even found a predictable conversion rate. We typically converted a new subscriber to a customer within 18 months. They may have subscribed out of interest, but soon the articles built up a relationship. When the subscriber finally had a need for our services, they picked up the phone and hired us.

Get what’s in you out

Generating leads got me writing, but I soon discovered an even greater benefit: ideas.

Writing is a process. You don’t just sit at the computer and fart out an article; at least I don’t. Each newsletter or magazine article takes me about 8 hours to write and edit, and blog posts take about 2 hours.

During these stretches of time I come to terms with my ideas and concepts. The process of putting them to paper brings clarity. When you have to explain an idea to someone else, you get much clearer about it in your own mind. There’s a natural link, and very beneficial as you solidify ideas.

The other key benefit of writing is releasing ideas. Once I write an article and share a concept I can move on. In periods where I don’t write, I often find I get stuck on concepts. It’s as if there’s a dam in my mind, and everything slows down.

I use the motto, “Get what’s in me out.” I make a point of finding and releasing my ideas on a weekly basis. That’s the power of blogging. Every week I have a personal commitment to post to StickyBranding.com. This commitment forces me to keep releasing the ideas and concepts from my head. Each time I do, I find another one waiting behind it. Some are new ideas, some build on old concepts, and others are mashups.

Write for your customers

I have found a deep appreciation for writing over the years. It’s a process I have come to enjoy, and one I refuse to delegate. That being said, I am also a person driven by rewards. If the articles didn’t generate leads or feedback, I would find it very hard to sustain this process.

Focus is everything in lead generation. You need to know who your customers are, where they are and how you can bring them value. Use that knowledge to focus your writing. It will result in more leads, and better ideas you can implement in your own business.

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