So, GM just started blogging and your next-door neighbor sent you to their blog so you could read every detail about their trip to Niagara Falls. Most major news stations have a blog and every member of myspace is automatically granted one. So, what it this blogging thing all about and how can what started as on-line journaling give a personality to your business and help you grow. Let’s start with the basics.
1. What was a Blog?
A weblog, which is usually shortened to blog, is a type of website where journal entries are made and displayed in a reverse chronological order.
Everyone can have a blog and the subject matter can range from the tribulations of a 16 teen year-olds life to a discussion board on CNN latest headlines.
2. What are Blogs now?
Blogs have no doubt changed since LiveJournal and Blogger both opened the blog frontier to non-techies in 1999. After a surge of personal blogs, corporations starting noticing that if a blogger wrote about their product or service then more traffic was drawn to their website. Even more helpful was when a blogger would include a link to a company’s web sight. Empowered with this information GM started their own blog where they share information about new projects, answer questions, and let customers share their idea. GM officials have said that the blog was wildly successful in not only increasing traffic to their website but more importantly giving their company name and face. “People really get into your company when they can read a message from Bob the designer about the latest project we are working on”
3. What is the Future of Blogs?
Corporate Blogging and Marketing Blogs are fast becoming a powerful way to draw traffic and convince your audience that you have the strongest ideas and products in your marketplace. As more and more corporations start their own blogs, the power of the blog is undeniable. The computer company Dell recently launched a blog and have been very excited about the results because people feel connected to the people at Dell. New research by Jupiter research group has suggested in their report that 70% of companies would be blogging by the end of the year. In the “Relationship Age” the ability to put a names and faces to your company is invaluable and companies are starting to see blogging as the perfect vehicle to do that. Think of using your blog more as a way to reveal the human faces behind your company. When your blog expresses a natural enthusiasm for your products, a genuine interest in the needs of your customers and reveals the people who work for them, you are on the right track. This is the future of your blog.
4. How will my Blog be different than my Website?
At its core, a blog, short for weblog, is a website. These days blogs mirror an online magazine more than a website. Blogs differ from most corporate websites in three important ways.
• Acting as your company’s brochure your corporate website is somewhat limited in how much information can be presented. Frequent changes and discussion would only confuse a site visitor. The content on a blog changes as frequently was you want it to. New information can be updated at anytime.
• Blogs are highly personal. Who knows who writes what you see on most company websites? The blog has a personal voice which puts a human face on a company and gives it a personality
• Blogs are often interactive – they invite feedback, or comments, from their readers, which are then published alongside the article or entry about which the comment is made. Thus, your blog can be useful in obtaining free research and can tie people closer to a company by making them feel involved by commenting.
The most important thing to keep in mind about creating a blog for your business is that blogs, by their nature, are authentic. A blog that is just a bunch of promotional marketing speak will get nothing but derision from its viewers.
5. Why should my Company have a Blog?
Blogging is a way to communicate to your audience on a personal, one-on-one level. The feedback that a company can receive via a blog is tremendous and invaluable.
Company blogs are used for many purposes, most falling within the realm of PR and Marketing. However blogs can do much more:
• Feature Company News
• Assist Brand Development
• Increase Search Engine Rankings
• Deliver Product Information
• Generate Buzz
• Community Development
• Increase Traffic to a Website
• Generate Interest and Enhance Sales
• Boosts your Online Presence
• Position you as an Expert in your Field
• Deliver Messages to a Target Audience
• Fastest Way to Share Knowledge
Blogs are just a vehicle for communication to engage your most loyal customers and most ardent critics. Blogs can give your business the edge it needs in the marketplace.
6. What are the drawbacks to blogging?
Time. Blogs must be updated frequently — several times a week, if not daily in order to hold readers’ attention. Most small-business owners have no time because they’re constantly working on their businesses. This is the exact reason a small business needs a professional blogger – someone who can post quality content on the blog about the business owner’s company and the mission and strategy of the company. We can provide news, related topics and information in many different niches with many different angles and expertise. This is exactly why a blogger is a position necessary for a business owner. If your company does not require a full time employee due to their size or other restrictions, Business Blogging Now is perfect for you.
7. How can a Blog help my Company turn Negative Feedback into Positive Change?
One of the best things about a blog is that they are interactive. They are a great medium for feedback about what is working and opportunities your company has. The key is to use the feedback to your advantage. You have a free focus group here. Listen to the comments and reap the benefits.
In addition comments can be seeded to promote further discussion and can become a place where you “talk” to your customers. You have the opportunity to answer questions, respond to requests, and connect with your customers.
8. How do I get started?
Contact Networlding at:
401 N. Michigan
Chicago, Il 60611