If you are a self-employed Notary looking to build your business, you may have considered blogging as a marketing tactic. But is it right for you, how does it work, and how much time will it take? Benefits of Blogging The entire purpose of blogging is to demonstrate thought-leadership in your industry. Notaries are most concerned with attracting local business and clients and while your blog posts will likely not be read by thousands of people, the content you create will help local clients find you when they look for a Notary via online search. Consider this: if you were looking for a local remodeler to re-do your bathroom, would you choose a remodeler with a nice website and blog full of helpful tips for your home, or the remodeler with a one-page website with no helpful information other than a list of services and contact information? The same goes for Notaries. If you blog on your website to demonstrate your expertise, knowledge of the industry, and your enthusiasm to answer questions and assist your clients, you’ll attract more business. Similarly, Google likes websites that are updated regularly with good content. And, remember, your goal is to appear higher in search results for your local area. A website with more relevant pages and content will almost always outrank a one-page website with little information. How to Begin Start by simply looking at your schedule. Do you have a few hours every week that you can devote to writing? Think about your writing expectations. How often would you like to post? Monthly, weekly, daily? For maximum impact most digital marketers and bloggers recommend posting a new article a few times a week. It creates new, relevant content that is indexed by search engines and can help you get found in a search. If you think you’d like to write twice a week, you’ll need to set aside a few hours to accomplish this. Budget that time in, or else you’ll fall behind. How to Get Ideas Consider these statistics: Nearly 60 percent of businesses have a company blog, but 65 percent of them haven’t updated their blog in a year or more. Of those who are blogging, only 35 percent actively blog once a month. Consider where you’ll be getting content ideas. WordPress has great daily inspirational prompts that give you ideas on content. It may not work all the time for a Notary blog, but if you think creatively enough perhaps it could. Find inspiration from other great sources. The National Notary Association weekly Notary Bulletin can be a starting point. You can pull an article from an organization like the NNA and share the link on your blog and write your own thoughts about it. Remember never to copy/paste an article from someone else. Not crediting it is plagiarism, and even crediting the article turns into duplicate content which hurts your website. Using a quote or two won’t hurt you, but it’s best to simply link to the full article. You can also take a screenshot of a quote or two and embed it in your own post. Use Google News to search for recent topics related to Notaries, real estate, healthcare and more. Where do you typically go to stay on top of your industry? Keep going there for more inspiration and be sure to blog about your take on it! Write about what interests you. You’re the expert Notary, so you have a wealth of knowledge to pull from. Write about your interesting signing experiences or tricky signings where you had to pull in outside help like the NNA Hotline! This advice can be helpful to other Notaries that might find themselves in similar situations, and it’ll showcase you as the thought leader in your industry. How to Write a Killer Blog Post You don’t have to blog long or complex posts every week. If you only have time for 300 words, that’s OK. Keep the content reader-friendly and light enough to digest quickly. Find ways to engage with your audience. Ask them questions and tell them to respond in comments. Just make sure that if they do, that you have time to go back and respond to them. Granted, if you don’t enjoy writing, blogging might not be the best marketing strategy for you. But if you enjoy writing and you’re passionate about being a Notary, blogging is a great opportunity! Caitlin Dodds is an Online PR Specialist at Web Talent Marketing.