Sunday, November 2, 2008

Business Divas Who Blog: Keeping It “Original”

Here are a few of the “ins and outs” and “dos and don'ts” of starting your own business blog...

Be Original.

Like any business divas who blog, you've got to work hard to “keep it original”. It is important to create your own style. Don't try to imitate others. Be yourself. Be natural. Your blog should be a reflection of who you are. When someone visits your blog, it is like they are entering into your home, your store, your newspaper, your world. A good first impression is very crucial. You only have one chance to capture a visitors attention and hold their interest. The key to a successful blog starts with “originality”. We can't stress this enough.

In an online world where there are thousands of indie blogs trying to stand out from the crowd, you've got to work hard to get noticed. Don't worry, though. We've all been there. Yes, it does take a lot of determination and devotion. There won't be an increase in traffic overnight. It takes time for this to happen. But, if you love what you can't go wrong.

Where To Begin.

If you are thinking about starting a blog to promote your business, then finding the right blog platform to suit your needs is the place to start. The most common platforms are Blogger, Typepad, and Wordpress.

The next step is selecting a good layout, choice of color, and header. This always helps to make a blog look more attractive and appealing to the eye. Let your visitors know a little more about you and your business by filling out your blog profile with a description of the services/products that you offer. Share a link to your website/shop and be sure to post crisp and clear photographs.

Spread The Word.

Banner exchanges and text links are great ways to advertise. Follow other blogs and use online networking sites to spread the word. Don't forget to create a monthly newsletter if you want to keep visitors and potential customers returning to your blog. Giveaways create a lot of excitement. Try it. People love freebies and will surely visit your blog to take part. Share news, information, advice, new products, etc, etc, etc. Join blogging teams and post business-related articles on e-zines where you can share your wisdom (plus share a link back to your blog). Meet other indie divas and create friendships. These are just a few examples of how you can bring more traffic to your blog.

Be Professional.

In order to be taken serious as a business woman, you must keep it professional. Make sure that you use proper grammar (capitalization, spelling, punctuations). Always do a spell-check before publishing your posts. It is equally important that you keep your content fresh and original. (yes, we're using that word again... “original”) Incorporate your own personality and style of writing into every blog post. This will make the blog one of a kind....and uniquely yours!

Be Honest. Use Your Own Imagination.

Never steal the work of others. Keep in mind that the content that you find on another blog is not yours for the taking. Do not copy or take credit for something that is not yours. Do not steal ideas, material, images, or information from another blog to make your own blog and/or business website better. It is dishonest and people will notice that your material is not original and that you are copying.

They say that “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”. But, oddly enough, we are inclined to disagree. This kind of imitation (i.e. stealing material from another blog) is not flattering in the least. Remember that there are ways that bloggers can track your comings and goings and find out that you are stealing their material. Plus, it says a lot about your ethics. Use your own imagination. Do your own research. Be professional. It is more rewarding, fun, and honorable. Best of all, your visitors will love it.

***On a more personal note...

This article comes at a time when we are currently dealing with similar circumstances here at DDIB. It just so happens that a frequent visitor and "blocked" follower of our blog (you know who you are!) is copying and collecting material from our blog to use on her own new business blog. We have been aware of her daily visits and activity over the past week or so, in particular.

Several of our delightful diva members and Twitter friends have been helping us keep an eye on this situation. It's good to have friends who care. Thank you, divas!

We work hard to keep our blog a fresh and exciting place for business women and savvy shoppers to visit. We love what we do. However, it can be quite discouraging to see someone attempting to steal away our originality and all that we have worked hard to create.

Moral of the story: Keep it original. That's what being a “diva in business” is all about.

If you follow these simple suggestions and guidelines, your blog is sure to be a success and your business will benefit greatly.


LoneStarVintageClothing said...

That's awful! I don't understand why someone would steal someone elses work. Hey, I would take that as a compliment. At least you guys know you are doing a great job! Too bad this person is so uncreative they cannot come up with their own original material! :)

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