Sharon Koehler

Stone Industry Consultant

Believe it or not, back in the day, if you wanted to advertise your business you either put an ad in the newspaper, or some other local or regional publication. Or, you took out a yearly ad in the Yellow Pages (What the heck is that?). Maybe you had traveling salespeople. That’s how you did business. No websites, no reviews, no Google star ratings, no Yelp, no Trip Advisor, no Nextdoor, pay-per-click, or Groupon. None of that.

My, how things have changed. Not only do we now have all the mediums for advertising mentioned above, there are also more. Many more. If things are good the way they are, then great, but if you need more recognition for yourself or your business, you might want to think about upping your game a bit. Why not add a blog to your website? 

A blog is literally a page on your website that you use to engage your customers or other consumers. It makes your website more interesting, and you can use your blog for many reasons. You can inform people of your different products or services, or you can post about topics relevant to your field in an effort to teach and inform. It reinforces your brand AND more importantly, by using relevant keywords, search engines will pick these words up in searches and drive more traffic to your website. If you want to go bigger than just your website, then you can consider a site like or

Boost Your Market Presence Through Online ContentIf you have control of your own site, just add the page, and start blogging (writing). If you have a web administrator, discuss it with them. If you don’t have time to do your own blogging, you can always hire a content writer. Just make sure you post on a regular schedule, and please double-check your grammar and spelling. 

If you are a little more tech-oriented, you may want to consider becoming a vlogger. Vlogs are literally video blogs aka video logs. It is a type of blog where the majority (if not all) of the content is in video form. Vlogs can go a bit further than blogs because they can be a bit of a show-and-tell piece. Instead of just writing, you can show people what you are talking about. Vlogs can not only be linked to your website but can also be posted on your website and on over half a dozen other sites like Twitch, Vimeo, Facebook, Instagram and more. You don’t necessarily have to buy a top-of-the-line camera or video recorder. Starting out, you may be able to just use your smartphone.

However, the legal aspect of vlogging is a bit of a minefield. Different states and municipalities have different rules and laws when it comes to vlogging. Things like: you are allowed to film in public places, but if you are in a private building or business, you need to get the owner’s permission to video. It’s the same as asking a customer if you can take pictures of your project in their home. Before you start vlogging, check your local laws and mandates.

What about your own podcast? A podcast is defined as a digital audio file made available on the internet, usually as a series. They are pre-recorded and then placed on a hosting service like Spotify, Amazon, or Google podcasts. They are not a live show and listeners cannot interact with the podcast in real time. 

Podcasts can be a great marketing tool. You can broaden your reach; promote your business and you can start out by promoting your podcast to your existing customers. (Technically, you already have “built-in” followers.) 

Podcasts do require a bit more equipment than just a smartphone. At a minimum, you will need a microphone that you can hook up to a computer for quality sound, and you will need to get some recording software.  

Lastly, how about online radio aka web or net radio, aka streaming or internet radio? That sounds like it might be complicated, but it really isn’t. Online radio is a live broadcast, streamed over the internet. Anyone with an internet connection can listen on their connected devices. Another thing about internet radio is that you can set it up to take callers and interact with listeners during the show. 

All you really need for online radio is a topic, a microphone, some headphones, and a hosting service like or Like a podcast, an online radio show can help promote your business, broaden your reach, engage your past and future customers, and set you apart from your competition. Fred Hueston aka The Stone Detective, has a radio show almost every Wednesday.  And let’s face it, Fred is famous and incredibly well known in this industry. 

Blogging, vlogging, podcasting and radio shows may sound complicated but there is help. All you need to do is Google whatever it is you want to do, and you can get step-by-step instructions and advice. Interested in blogging? A Google search will show that, and are ready and waiting with advice and instructions. Google, Vimeo, and Adobe all offer step-by-step instructions on how to start a Vlog. If you search podcasting, Buzzsprout, Spotify, and YouTube all offer step-by-step instructions and advice. If online radio interests you, Google,, and can also guide you. 

The times are ever changing, and if you do what you’ve always done, you will get what you always got. If you’re OK with that, then fine. If you aren’t, then maybe it’s time to try something new.

Please send your thoughts and comments on this article to Sharon Koehler at .