Direct Sellers and Solopreneurs: Use Your Blog

ByMaria Duron

Many social networking sites have recently pushed out some changes in their platforms that have not exactly had their users jumping for joy. Brands, most especially, seem to have become negatively affected by these changes, as people see engagement plummet.

Facebook, who remains the giant among all the social networking sites because of its sheer number of users, recently rolled out some changes that have really impacted brand engagement. When users like content within Facebook, for example, it seems that this isn't published in the newsfeed anymore. This includes liking any brand pages, which can mean fewer opportunities for brands to be picked up on by their followers' friends.

Also, Facebook plans to change the way brand pages are currently set. The site plans on making wall posts larger, while removing the reviews and discussions tab that you normally see. The social networking giant explains that they're working on better tools to help pages monitor and filter content, but many people aren't happy that their reviews and discussions will be removed, since they've grown to like this feature of Facebook pages.

With so many changes on these social networking sites, it would be advantageous for both direct sellers and solopreneurs to redirect their attention to things that they can control, namely their website and blog. With people still wondering what changes are still to take place, it's critical that you focus on what you can do to counteract this.

So how do you ensure better engagement of your audience through your blog?

1. Put up great content

Great, relevant and useful content is what's going to engage your consumers and keep them coming back for more. It's the main reason why a person would just skim through your content and then move on, or read through the whole post and then comment on it, because they really find it interesting enough to comment on.

2. Update regularly

You aren't going to get a nice set of followers if you don't update your blog regularly. It's important that you try to at least post once or twice a week so that people will continue to have your brand in their minds.
Of course, don't post just for the sake of posting - always remember to continually offer great content so that people won't lose interest.

3. Use SEO

Search Engine Optimization is the best way for more people to stumble upon your blog and learn about your brand. Google remains the most visited site because so many people are looking for information out there, and if your blog isn't SEO-optimized, then you're going to lose a lot of opportunities to be found.

So make sure that you optimize your blog by using targeted keywords within your blog posts as well as getting links from other sites going to your page. This is why you can't just put up a blog and hope it gains popularity overnight - this doesn't happen if you're not going to do anything.

4. Participate in discussions

This is actually related to SEO, since you should participate in discussions that are happening on other blogs in order to get attention to your blog. As you know, each time you leave a comment somewhere, it effectively gives you a backlink to your blog. And when you participate in discussions that are related to your brand, then the readers of that other blog may very well visit your own blog and start interacting with you if they like what they see.

5. Promote your blog

Also, you need to promote your blog to get more viewers and visitors to it. You can use social networking sites for this, as well as community forums, and other places that are populated with users.

6. Plan your objectives

Of course, it's important that you have a plan and a set of objectives so that all your efforts at blogging aren't for naught. What exactly do you want to achieve? Do you want an increase in customer engagement? But how exactly do you measure this?

Make sure that you have something you can measure in order to evaluate whether your blogging campaign is effective or not. You can measure the amount of people subscribing to your blog, for example, or maybe the number of comments each blog post receives. So plan your objectives ahead so that you can see if you're effectively getting the reaction you want.

Direct sellers and solopreneurs don't have to be afraid of all these social networking sites' changes. As long as you have a blog that you can control and utilize to your advantage, then you can still continue to engage your audience and get those sales up.

"Maria Elena Duron, CEO (chief engagement officer), buzz2bucks

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