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Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

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Page 1: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Blogs to Business

Presented by:Rabeea Mannan

Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Page 2: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

What is a Blog?

Web + Log = Blog

It is often thought as an online diary orjournal…….

But basically it an instant publishing tool anyone can use to add new content onto the web

Page 3: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

It is also a….

• Collaborative space

• Breaking-news outlet

• Place for private thoughts

• A promotional gold mine

Page 4: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Formal Definition

A blog is a user-generated website where entries are made in journal style and displayed in a reverse chronological order.

Page 5: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Blog Versus..

• Website - Static pages of information or sales letters

• Newsletter - Information sent to inbox, drive action

• Forum - Conversation and interaction

Blogs combine elements of all of the above

Page 6: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Features of a Blog

• Details Posts • Feed (RSS) • Comments • Listing • Trackbacks • Sidebar Widgets • Blogroll • Social media share buttons

Page 7: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Why Blog?• 73.6% of North Americans are on the Internet

• 83% of Internet users watch videos online

• 49% of Internet users use a search engine each day

• 73% of Internet users read blogs

• Companies that blog:Monthly leads generated rise by 126%.Visitors rise by 55%.Have 97% more inbound links.Have 434% more indexed pages in search engine

Page 8: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Business Blog?

Wikipedia’s Definition of a business blog

A corporate weblog is published and used by an organization to reach its organizational goals

Page 9: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai
Page 10: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Corporate Vs Personal Blogs• Blogs have become increasingly

popular and widespread among businesses

Known as a “Corporate Blog” • Corporate blogs are published by

organizations to reach many of its goals – Posts/comments easy to follow

due to centralized hosting and structured conversation threads.

– Used to generate CGC through introduction of new products/services, react to public criticisms, and provide customer assistance

• Approximately 12.8% of Fortune 500 Companies currently use corp. blogs-– Eg. Google, Dell, Coca-Cola,

McDonalds

Personal Blogger(19% of total)

Personal Blogger(19% of total)

Professional bloggers

(46% of total)

Professional bloggers

(46% of total)

Corporate Bloggers(12% of total)

Corporate Bloggers(12% of total)

Page 11: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Value of Corporate Blogging• Word of Mouth (WOM)

– It serves as a catalyst to drive consumers to engage, research and purchase

• Consumers becoming creators of CGC, presenting their personal experience and opinions about the brand

• 78% of respondents believe consumer recommendations are the most credible form of advertising - “ Nielsen Global Survey: Word-of-Mouth the Most Powerful Selling Tool Oct 2007”

• CGC Value is becoming a credible and authoritative basis for a purchase decision. – Online social network users were three times more likely to trust their

peers' opinions over advertising when making purchase decisions. ("Social Networking Sites: Defining Advertising Opportunities in a Competitive Landscape," JupiterResearch, March 2007)

• CGC is poised to have a greater impact on marketing goals in the near future.

Page 12: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Why Business Blogging?

Page 13: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

“The way we use the web is shifting in a

fundamental way. Instead of primarily being

passive consumers of information, more and

more Internet users are becoming active

participants. Weblogs allow everyone to have

a voice.”

Technorati.com

Page 14: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Crowd-sourced content:

In Technorati’s list of the top 100 Blogs

(March 2009) 2 of the top Blogs worldwide were dedicated to

Apple, both are independent and not officially affiliated to

Apple:

24 The unofficial Apple Weblog (www.tuaw.com)

81 MacRumours (www.macrumours.com)

Page 15: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai
Page 16: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai
Page 17: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Increases Exposure

• Help increase brand recognition and may boost traffic to your website

• Corporate differentiation, leadership and authority.

• Display brand personality

• Increases Reach

Page 18: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Improves Search Engine Optimization

• Optimize for keywords• Search engines like Google

like sites that regularly update content

• With greater content, there may be increased benefits from the long tail of search

• Blogs act as “link bait” and thus increase traffic to your site

Page 19: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Opportunity for Market Research

• Obtain “free” market research – May give insight in to consumer likes/dislikes,

trends, expectations, etc, which the business can use to cater specifically to current and prospective customers.

Page 20: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Generates Dialogue

• Users may write and respond to blog posts, creating potential continuous dialogue

• Dialogue can be more informal, allowing businesses to “speak” more personably, which may increase trust in consumers

• Encourages feedback

Page 21: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Some Other Reasons

• To share company announcements

• Generates and captures new leads.

• Enhances one’s credibility with potential clients.

• Establish one’s expertise

• And above all….

IT’S CHEAP!

Page 22: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Measuring Blogs

Page 23: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Metric # 1 - Subscriptions

Page 24: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Metric # 2 – Page Views

Page 25: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Metric # 3 - Comments

• A good indicator of engagement• A way to listen to the market

Page 26: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Metric # 4 – Inbound Links

• Measure the SEO impact of the blog• Indicates Blog role’s in outside conversations

Page 27: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

WAYS/KEYS TO SUCCESSFUL BLOGS

Page 28: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

1. IDENTIFY TARGET PERSONAS

Page 29: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Your content pulls in your persona

Create the kind of online content that your buyers naturally gravitate to.

Page 30: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

What Keywords Will Attract Your Personas?

Fill posts with them

Build an archive of content full of them

Page 31: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

How We Pick Keywords: Keyword Grader

Page 32: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

A word of caution

• Writing for your personas DOES NOT mean writing about the products and services you sell them

• Write about the things they want to learn about

Page 33: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

2. Create a mix of posts

Page 34: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Plan a Mix of Posts

Page 35: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Basic, Everyday Posts

• How to posts

• Rich in keywords

• Get good at whipping them out

• Make sure they’re useful

Page 36: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Healthy, Thoughtful Posts

• Should establish your site as a thought leader in the industry

• Put time into them

• Don’t do too many

Page 37: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Big Blog Projects

• Lots of work

• Lots of links, discussion and attention

• Pick them well

Page 38: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Posts That Start Fires

• Make a bold statement

• Be prepared to defend yourself

• Lots of comments and links

• Too many of these posts could lose trust

Page 39: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

The Sweet Stuff

• These posts make your blog fun

• A chance to poke fun at yourself

• Lots of traffic/links

• Often video, images

Page 40: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

3. Write a great post

Page 41: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Tips for Post Structure

• Use Headings

• 500-800 words (or shorter!)

• Lists are OK (just not too many)

• 1 idea per post

• Always Add a Photo

Page 42: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Where Do You Get Ideas?

• Everywhere

• Keep a list

• When you learn something, flesh it out

• Check your email outbox!

• Ask your readers

Page 43: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Write Great Headlines

Write the headline before the article

• Imagine the reader won’t see the article

• Surprise people

• No spelling errors!

• Use your keywords

Page 44: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

4. Sustain it

Page 45: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Pick a Publishing Schedule

• Once a week? Every Monday and Wednesday?

• Stick to it

• The goal is to build up a body of keyword-rich content (create an asset)

Page 46: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Different Ways of Doing Posts

• Email interviews

• Video interviews (conferences, office visitors, clients)

• Guest posts from people with similar blogs

• “Best of” lists

• “How we do it” posts

Page 47: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Should I Hire People?

• It depends.

• Pros:• You don’t have to do the work• You hire a “professional writer”

• Cons:• Nobody knows your business like you do• You don’t build your personal reputation• You don’t participate in the conversation

Page 48: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

5. Spread it

Page 49: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Take Comments Seriously

• Make sure you comment back

• Find out who the people are

• Follow their links

• Subscribe to their blog, follow them on Twitter

Page 50: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Publish on Social Media• Post directly

• Post via twitterfeed.com automatically

• Post to your status

• Post automatically via a feed to your fan or profile page

• Also consider LinkedIn, other sites.

Page 51: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Where Do You Link to Your Blog?

• Your homepage

• Press releases

• Business cards

• Email signatures

Page 52: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Engage People; Stay on Their Radar

• Write posts that link to or follow up on bigger bloggers’ radar screens

• Most people do Google or Technorati searches for their name, so they’ll see your post

Page 53: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Concerns

Page 54: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Loosing control

• Business never had control of what people say about them.

• You cant control the message

• But you can join the conversation and make sure that your side of the story is heard

Page 55: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Somebody will say something about me/us/our product

• If what people say is true its an opportunity for you to learn and improve

• And if people say something about your product which is untrue, you have an opportunity to correct it by responding appropriately!

Page 56: Blogs to Business Presented by: Rabeea Mannan Sarah Farnaz Baqai

Other concerns

• Leaking of internal corporate information might have very damaging results for business operations.

• Blogging is hard work

• Blogging is commitment

• Blogging is time consuming