I spend most Sunday evenings on Twitter taking part in #blogchat. I spend an hour Tweet chatting with people about blogging. It is interesting to me that there is always a group of people that when the topic comes to making money or driving traffic to their sites they say they are not interested. They are not interested in SEO and they are not interested in anything to do with selling as if money was a dirty word and would taint their pure art.
Really though, when we are blogging we do need to care about our readers. The writing is a relationship of sorts. And if you want to people to read and connect with what you are writing, even if you are not selling items then you are “selling” your writing in a manner of speaking.
There are others on #Blogchat who know and are not ashamed of the fact that they are in business. This group knows and understands that our writing is actually a form of marketing. Hopefully, our posts have some intrinsic value and offer our readers some great content, but basically they are geared towards developing a relationship with our readers where we would like at least a portion of them to work with or buy something from us. Yes, I am here to say we are doing business and we want to be paid for our services or products and there is nothing wrong with that at all.
Even those of us who are clear that we are out to make a living, and that there is nothing wrong with that, sometimes make it hard for people to know what they do and how to work with them. Seriously. My husband comes into my office when I am working on a site and I know we have to go back to the drawing board if Duane says, “But, Judi, what do they Do?”
I have heard it said that marketing is a bit like plastic surgery; you only notice when it is done badly. If our marketing is done well, we will know all about what our clients need and what they can or will pay for our products or services. We see their need and provide the needed solution in just the right way. Everyone feels great about the interaction and no one feels manipulated or taken advantage of.
However, when something is off, someone gives us the hard sell, or the interaction feels desperate and manipulative, it will break the trust needed to complete the transaction. Imagine you were looking forward to eating some Oreo cookies with a big glass of cold milk. You take a bite of cookie and then take a big swig of milk. But, oh no. The milk was sour. Yuck. You are left with no milk and a really bad taste in your mouth.
We can avoid this transgression, by having our attention on our clients/customers and staying true to ourselves. What do they want and why? What do they not need and why? Is this the right time place and price point? When we are solid and have integrity we will create good mutually beneficial relationships with our clients creating business that feels good to both parties.
There is nothing wrong with selling our products and services. In fact our clients want us to make offers. To not do so deprives people of experiencing our genius. If our offers are created with their needs and ours in mind, we cannot lose. However, doing otherwise may leave a really nasty taste. Just know that awesome spreads, as well as the opposite. Ick can go viral.
What do you think? Can businesses thrive on mutually beneficial relationships, trust and respect?