One of the best ways to drive traffic to your website or place of work is to write great content. But don’t treat this content as hidden advertising; use it an opportunity to build trust with your audience.
If you’re a strong writer (or have access to a fabulous editor), here are five ways you can write your way to business success.

1. Pen a column

Trade magazines and local newspapers are often hungry for content but overlooked by professional writers. Even high-profile outlets such as Forbes.com rely heavily on unpaid expert columnists.

Writing a column gives you the opportunity to make consistent contact with an audience, building a relationship with that audience over time, and presenting you as an expert in your field. This sets you up to become their go-to resource when they’re in the market for whatever it is that you have to offer.

Pro tip: Don’t be fooled by the fact that these are unpaid writing jobs. Columns drive traffic back to your website — and that’s the point. You’re not trying to become a journalist here. :)

2. Publish a how-to guide

You’re an expert in something — and that means you’re in a position to teach others how to perform basic tasks or evaluate professionals like you. From advice on how to choose a home restoration contractor to software quick tips, your know-how is valuable. Pull it all together into a handy guide and then publish it as a blog post, a downloadable ebook or whitepaper, or a printed brochure.

Bonus tip: make a video of your how-to guide and then post it to YouTube, the world’s second-largest search engine after Google.

3. Contribute an article or guest post

What magazines and blogs do your prospects read? You may not be interested in writing a regular column in these publications, but a guest post or contributed article on a well-targeted topic could be very effective. Pitch a topic to the editor to get started.

4. Blog

We’ve extolled the benefits of blogging before but it warrants repeating: this one activity, done consistently, can help your business marketing in a myriad of ways.

If you’re a Jottful customer and you’re not blogging today (but you’re ready to start!), contact us at hello@jottful.com and ask how you can add blogging to your account.

5. Author a book

Okay, this one is not for the faint of heart. But if you’ve written a series of columns or blog posts, you may find the chapters are largely already fleshed out. Add an intro, conclusion, and compelling title and (voila!) ebook. Nothing positions you as firmly as an expert as being a (self-)published author.

What will you write this week?