Freelance writers work with small businesses all the time. It is a winning combination — many freelancers see themselves as small business owners because most of the time, they work as independent contractors. When a small business owner comes to you for help, you expect more of the same. If you have the consistent expectation that every small business owner who wants to hire a blogger is coming to you with the same vision, the same goals, or wanting the exact same thing, you’re making a big mistake. I found that out the hard way.
Understanding the World of Social Media as a Tiny Business Owner
A while ago, I had the chance to work with two women who were small (more correctly, tiny) business owners. One had an e-commerce business she launched – unsuccessfully. The other had a small retail store that did reasonably well locally. She wanted to expand that business by developing a presence online. Both women approached me for help in spreading the word about their businesses, so they could gain visibility and recognition.
They thought that they could use social media for that purpose. While there are small business owners who use social media to post links and to try to get people to click on those links, they never succeed in getting savvy social media users to pay attention to them, let alone, bother to click on the links. Things don’t work that way anymore. Getting my clients to understand that was a real challenge.
Social Media Demands Engagement
Before Google Panda and the subsequent updates changed the way the search engine giant ranked websites, anyone could put up a website and pack it so full of SEO oriented keywords that content was unreadable. Small businesses could pretty much do anything with social media; most jumped on what they thought was a chance to get free advertising.
That doesn’t fly anymore. You have to have something to engage the audience you want to target. You have to give them something meaningful, something that grabs readers, sustains their interest and makes them feel like you’re giving them the royal treatment.
Most small business owners – particularly the one-employee small businesses, don’t have the time to put into trying to create something that will attract the people who buy the type of things they sell. That’s why these small business owners stand to gain much more than the money they’d have to pay out to hire a freelance writer to produce relevant blog posts on a regular basis.
As a small business owner, think about the possible benefits of hiring a freelance writer. You don’t just get awesome blog posts that resonate far beyond the audience you want to target. You want to turn Internet surfers into loyal customers. To do that, you need to inspire them. Dazzle them with what you know – not just what you sell. The information you post on your website, is as valuable to the success of your business as the products you sell.
Susan B loves to write about technology, including social media. She doesn’t just write about social media; she actively uses it to connect with family members and friends who are spread out across the country.