This guest post is by Amy Harrison of Harrisonamy.com.
This article is the final part of a three-part series on how your blog can feed different types of business models. In the previous two articles we looked at how blogging can attract customers who want to hire you to do your thing, or to be coached by you so they can do theirs.
The final piece of the puzzle is looking at one way a blog can be used to sell products to customers. These might be physical products, digital products such as ebooks, or events and training courses.
Writing my blog put my directly in touch with an audience of people who were interested in a subject that I could help them with: copywriting.
As I built readers I became more familiar with the struggles they had, and where they needed help. Their challenges influenced the creation of my first two products, which still sell today even thought I launched them almost 18 months ago.
There’s no way I would have been able to create products that responded well without having a blog to see which posts were popular, which ones received comments, which ones people shared, and which ones got the most traffic. Best of all, I didn’t have to wait till launch day to see if my product was something people wanted.
The blog didn’t just help me get a feel for what products to create; it helped sell the products without being pushy. Here’s how.
Using the blog to set the scene—preparing for a launch
Whenever I’ve launched or promoted a product, the blog has been an invaluable tool in the process.
Even though your products are geared up to help your audience, sometimes you need to raise awareness of the problems they solve, and your blog is a great platform to do this.
Planning your content back from the launch date, you can start brainstorming topics to attract the attention of your ideal customer. When I’m planning a product launch, I’m looking at the key issues and challenges that the product solves and then turning them into discussion topics for the blog. I might also release a couple of cheat sheets and two- or three-page templates or reports that will give my readers a sample of what the full product is like.
This does a couple of things. It raises awareness about the problems, but also the awareness of the “need” to fix those