Sounds like something from one of Shakespeare’s plays, doesn’t it? Actually, it’s a quote from Pedro Calderon de la Barca, a 17th-century Spanish playwright.
You may wonder where I found such an obscure quote. It was a comment by someone named Vigrx on my blog post titled “Using Social Media to Market Your Business.” He or she was promoting the site vigrxdeals.org. The fact that the quote had absolutely nothing to do with social media was a sure sign that it was spam.
And someone named How to Play Guitar Chords left a comment on a post I wrote titled “Is the Traditional Publishing Industry Becoming Obsolete?” He was promoting the site instantguitarist.com.
That same post about the future of publishing also attracted the following comment: “Cats can be spayed or neutered so you never have to worry about them getting pregnant.”
And someone named Oral Piss who was promoting the site peeingmovies.net commented on that post also.
Like many of you, I started a blog to promote my business, not to talk about anyone’s personal peccadilloes. In other words, I have a business blog.
But when you’re a sole proprietor and you’re the entire business, it’s hard to find the time and the topics to blog two or three times a day, five days a week. I’m so busy using more direct ways to market my business, I just haven’t spent much time on my blog.
And when 99.9% of the comments on your corporate blog are spam, you begin to ask the following questions:
- What am I doing wrong?
- Will I ever attract my target market?
- How do I write about the same products and services three times a day, five days a week, 50 weeks a year?
Have You Given Up on Blogging?
Because I’m still struggling to use a blog to promote my own business, I was so glad the Social Media Examiner editors sent me a copy of Corporate Blogging For Dummies by Douglas Karr and Chantelle Flannery as my next book review.
When I got the book, I immediately looked up “spam” in the index. I was disappointed that it was only one page. In addition to comment moderation, Karr and Flannery recommend a spam-blocking technology such as Akismet, a challenge question or CAPTCHA form, and email verification.
So if you already use anti-spam technology on your corporate blog, that’s one page you can skip! But the rest of this 400-page book is packed with information. In easy-to-understand “Dummies” language, you’ll learn how to:
- Develop a corporate blog policy
- Choose a blog platform
- Select and manage a team of bloggers
- Find the time and the content
- Use content that drives search engine traffic
- Promote your blog
- Design calls to action and landing pages
- Measure your success
That sounds like a lot of work, doesn’t it? So you may be wondering if blogging will really help promote your business. If it’s so much work, why do so many people recommend it?
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Here’s why Karr and Flannery recommend it: “According to Nielsen, folks perform over 10 billion searches on search engines each month. That’s about 33 searches per day per American! Search engines want to provide relevant content to search engine users, so they identify sites that are relevant, updated frequently, and are popular.”
So as you can imagine, search engines love blogs. And you should be thinking about using a blog to establish your online presence. This is definitely an inbound marketing strategy. When people search the Internet for a solution to their problem – as more and more people do these days – you want them to find your website.
But be forewarned! “Blogging is a marathon, not a sprint,” write Karr and Flannery. “Compared to short-term marketing strategies such as pay-per-click and e-mail marketing, blogs are slow, methodical, long-term solutions.” So you may not see results for a year or more. It takes time to establish your company as an authoritative source of business solutions on the Internet.
Corporate Blogging the Easy Way
To address the most common complaint about blogging – “What will I write about?” – can you spell the word “repurpose,” ladies and gentlemen?
That’s right! You can reuse information you already have. Such as:
- Emails to customers
- Press releases
- Industry news
- Customer testimonials
- PowerPoint presentations
If you work for a fairly large company that has been around for a while, you’ll find plenty of existing information you can repurpose and post on your blog.
And you don’t have to do all that work yourself! If you have more than 25 employees, you’ll probably find two or three who can write fairly well. A blog post doesn’t have to be the next great American novel. Your blog team can write one major post once a week, and one 150-word post each of the other four days.
And you won’t have to pay tens of thousands of dollars to put a one-time, 30-second commercial on TV that most viewers will mute.
You can still do that if you want. But as long as your blog team keeps writing, your blog will grow into an authoritative collection of useful information about your products and services. And it will be available to potential customers 24/7/365, when they just happen to be looking for a solution to their problem at three o’clock in the morning.
Do you really believe that person will think, “Gee, let me turn on the TV and see if they show a commercial that will help me with my problem.” I don’t think so.
And remember another major advantage of a blog over a website – you can interact with your customers. You can engage potential customers and convert them into actual customers.
So if you’re one of those companies that abandoned a corporate blog after a few months, you may want to reconsider. A blog can bring potential customers directly to you, with minimal work on your part. Let Corporate Blogging For Dummies teach you everything you need to know to attract people who are looking for your solution to their problem.
Social Media Examiner gives this book a 5-star rating.
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