Craft blogs can be a great marketing tool for the small online business for several reasons.
First of all, blogs are written by regular people. This means they have a great word-of-mouth feel that is more believable and approachable than purchased advertising. Also, search engines like Google love blogs because they are full of fresh content on a regular basis.
While building your own blog is easy and free if you use platforms like Blogger or Typepad, if you build a blog dedicated to your business, you need to update it frequently. This may be hard to do if you have slow periods in your business or don't add new products to your site regularly.
I have a dedicated blog for my art business, and it has evolved to become more of a how-to for artists than an effective forum for promoting and selling my art. If I only posted new paintings, I would only be updating my blog once a month or so, and the experts all agree that if you want to drive traffic to your blog, you should post daily - several times a week at the very least.
In my opinion, the best way to promote your business using blogs is by using other people's blogs. No, I'm not suggesting password theft and blog hijacking!
There are a multitude of blogs out there that love profiling great indie businesses. Find a blog that would suit your product, and email them requesting a profile. If you can offer a giveaway or a discount code, they will love you even more, because stuff like that brings traffic to their blog as well!
You probably already follow a few craft blogs that relate to your specific area of interest or reflect your style - try approaching them, or do what I call "blogsurfing." Use the blogroll of your favorite blog to visit more, similar blogs that may be interested in featuring your store or your product.
People read craft blogs. They may 'tune out' when it comes to advertising banners or blinkies, they may be enraged by annoying pop-ups, but blogs, if carefully chosen and managed, can be your greatest friend when it comes to promoting your online craft business.
Guest author Angela Fehr is co-owner of Anklebiters, handcrafted toys and clothes that are kid-friendly and encourage learning through imaginative play. Anklebiters features artist Angela Fehr's Paper Me personalized paper dolls, hand painted using your child's photo.