This post was written by Aditya Mahesh of BlogOnExpo, a free digital conference for bloggers that will feature sessions about blogging and interviews with professional bloggers. The conference kicks off on December 1st, 2007.
Blogs are one of the most effective and cost efficient marketing tools that any business, online or offline, can use. Blogs allow you to interact directly with your potential customers and give a more personal face to your company. The greatest example of this would be Robert Scoble, the blogger who gave a personal face to the giant corporation that is Microsoft. But you don’t have to be Microsoft to use a blog as a marketing tool.
Blogs are very inexpensive to set-up and run, especially if you use the free WordPress platform and one of the thousands of quality free themes that are available. Once you have a blog set-up all you need to do is post.
Post about your company (news, projects you are working on, issues that may arise, etc.), but don’t just post company news. If you do your blog won’t have a very large readership. Instead blog about the current state/direction of the industry you are in. This way, your blog can become an authority source in the niche and drive a great amount of targeted traffic to your company website.
If you offer a consulting service, offer a few free tips in blog posts. A perfect example of this is SEOmoz.org. In my talks with CEO Rand Fishkin, he has told me that the blog has become one of the most valuable assets of the company as it has drawn millions of visitors to the company’s website and made SEOmoz one of the authority figures in the SEO Industry.
Here are a few more reasons why blogging is a great idea for any company:
- It acts as a platform of direct communication between you and your customers.
- Search engines love a website with fresh content added frequently, so blogs are great for SEO.
- Blogs with quality content can attract thousands of visitors to your website and those visitors who can’t afford your services can be monetized through the sale of premium or content or even ads.
- Comments allow you to get direct feedback from potential customers, making it a very cost effective form of targeted market research.
Finally, just as a tip, make sure to host your blog on you company’s domain name such as blog.companyname.com or companyname.com/blog as this insures that the blog will have SEO benefits for your company’s main website.