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Five questions to answer before starting a company blog

May 8, 2012

Campfire Communications just helped a client start a company blog. Here are a few of the questions we helped them answer as they considered whether a blogging strategy was right for them:

1) Are we using this blog strictly as a sales channel? If the answer is “yes” you may want to reconsider. Your customers are already inundated with advertisements and sales pitches. Don’t add to the noise.  Use your blog instead to offer practical solutions and ideas to the real-world challenges facing your customers.  Use it to inform, enlighten, and offer thought-provoking perspective on your industry and your company.  If you reach that standard, you’ll be soft-selling readers on your team, talent, and products without having to make an overt pitch.

2) How often will we update this blogThe only thing worse than not having a blog is a blog that is rarely updated. A blog that hasn’t been updated in months suggests that “nobody’s home” or that you have nothing of value to share.  A dynamic blog, however, suggests you’re a forward-thinking, ideas-oriented company.  If you aren’t committed to updating your blog regularly, shelve the blogging idea for another day.

3) Who will write and edit blog content? A blog is only as good as the content you publish.  Assemble a team of co-workers who fit three attributes: 1) They offer valuable and relevant insights, 2) They write persuasively and concisely, and 3) They embrace video and other creative tools as a way to keep the blog dynamic. Create an editorial calendar so that each member is responsible for creating content a certain number of times each month.

4) How will we market the blog?  A blog without a marketing plan is like the proverbial tree falling in the forest.  Nobody knows about it.  Develop a plan to market your blog’s content to those who will find it useful.  Integrate it into email marketing, search engine marketing, and social media. Done right, this will vastly increase your blog’s readership and enhance your company’s reputation.

5) What are some good examples of company blogs? Here are four examples from different industries: Home Depot (Retail), Duarte (Design), Marriott Hotels (Travel), and High Street Partners (B2B). Each blog offers practical solutions and perspectives on the real-world challenges facing its readers, provides content regularly, and uses video and other tools to keep content dynamic.

Still have questions? Campfire can help. Just contact us at www.campfirecomm.com.

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