You would be surprised if you knew how many companies are still doubting in this social networking day and age, whether they should start a blog or not.
Although blogging might sound ‘old school’ to the first movers out there, the reality is different. Blogs are social media and often the hub of social media.
And, yes, many companies still have to be convinced. When companies consider starting their own blog or even joining the conversations on other people’s blogs these good intentions still often bring with them dozens of questions. ‘Should we blog?’ ‘What should we blog about?’ ‘What about the legal aspects?’ ‘What if we receive negative feedback?’ ‘Where do we start?’
For those companies: some arguments why they finally might take a risk.
Blogs are social media hubs
A blog is a perfect place to start when you want to explore the social media world. It’s a social hub that can be used as a starting point for more social conversations. You can connect it with virtually everything that exists in the social networking space.
Most likely, bloggers are talking about you. They’re talking about your business, your products, your customer service, and your competitors. You might want to start listening to what they have to say, and learn from it to see how others regard your business and your products. The feedback can also teach you a lot about your positioning towards your competitors. By starting your own blog you can talk back and gather feedback to.
Join the conversation
Observing and tracking blogs to assemble feedback is one thing, but there is much more you could do. You can interact with bloggers and their readers by actively joining the conversation: not only by reading blogs, but also by commenting, providing more details or corrections where needed, or starting your own blog(s). It gives you a chance to show that there’s real people behind the corporate wall, that actually listen and care about what other people have to say.
If you want to build up a relation with people, don’t limit yourself to connections with mainstream media. The tools to establish a direct connection to your audience are already in place, so use them. While it’s wrong to consider blogs to be nothing more than just another vehicle to support your corporate communication, it can be a viable tool in establishing a direct conversation about e.g. the launch of your latest product, a look inside your company’s culture, an announcement of a great new hire, etc. A blog is also a great hub for crisis communication, social networking, and it gives your company an open image. PR is not a monolgue anymore!
Get a face, get real and authentic
Reaching out to bloggers in a transparent, open way can be a very cost-effective way of communication that fits right into your marketing strategy and has a huge impact on your brand. It’s way to get personal, show the people behind your HQ, get real, be authentic, should I continue? The possibilities are endless: you can even advertise on blogs to reach exactly the mass and/or niche audience you want, you can invite bloggers to your corporate events, you can have them help spread your message, you can ask them to test out your new product and write an honest review to gain feedback, you can ask them for ideas, and so on. Online communities have proven to be highly influential in the past, and social media are becoming more and more embedded into people’s lives every day.
So please start blogging. Right now!
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