Blogger: Mary Keeley
Location: Books & Such Midwest Office, IL
Blogs require content–fresh content–that captures readers and gives them a reason to come back. One thing to consider when creating a blog is if your brand has the ability to cultivate ongoing quality content to write about on your blog. In her article “Outstanding Brand Blogs You Should Check Out,” posted on iMediaConnection.com, Sarah Kotlova reported what she found when she looked at four companies with successful brand blogs. Here are the main points:
- Blogs don’t have to consist of paragraphs of text or cumbersome, innovative thoughts. A blog can simply be about highlighting a brand’s personality and inviting a community into discussions about what its members (followers) enjoy. I’m guessing this is how most of us approach our blogs. I’d love to hear how you specifically apply this idea to your blog.
- Blogs can maximize social media. They can promote your brand message while empowering fans to share their thoughts about your brand. In addition to the standard share buttons, two of the blogs Kotlova reported on “added their own ‘LUV it’ buttons, so fans can spread the love without logging into other profiles.” One of these blogs even allows fans to upload photos to its blog. Now that’s really interactive. What do you think of these ideas?
- Similar to the findings about websites that I told you about on Monday, successful blogs are user-friendly, making it easy (and therefore quick, as in the seven-second rule) to find information. A blog Kotlova cited provided many ways followers could connect with it.
- One company has a separate blog for every facet of its business. How might we apply this to our author world? For instance, if you write to a broad audience or age group, it might be advantageous for you to split into more than one blog. You would have to first consider the additional time and effort needed for planning and implementation, but there could be worthwhile community-building benefit in doing this.
- Providing shortcuts (tabs, buttons, etc.) to help users navigate your blog encourages them to come back to your blog.
- There is nothing worse than an abandoned blog.
I’m looking forward to you sharing your reactions to these points and personal experiences. How does your blog reflect your brand? Where do you find fresh content? How do you encourage interacting with readers?