Blogs (or blog-sites, or interactive websites) are a funny thing. Some regard it as only something you do/create if you want to talk about your hobby, others (I'm one of them) regard it more and more as a marketing tool that can be used for interacting with prospects, customers, like-minded people; teaching and/or explaining readers about your products or services. And it's a marketing tool that becomes even more important when the 'blogosphere' continues its growth-rate.
Various blog-conversations this week tackled/questioned the blog as tool; how to reach/teach non-bloggers to become a part of it; how to embrace 'self-promotion' through your blog (without bragging); how to 'brand' yourself as blogger - not only on your own blog, but also when commenting on other blogs.
What made me stop and re-think my own blogging 'habits' was item
four three on Liz Strauss "The SOBCon Next Level Quest" : Define a Vision for our Blogs.
So, combining that thought (we define visions for every other business goal/aim, don't we?) with other wise tips I've decide to do exactly that for all three active blogs we/I have.
Business wise (i.e. working for a profit) our FAQ blog "tips and advice on natural wooden flooring" I have to consider most important. I have to see it as an extra marketing tool to encourage prospects to:
- visit our 'static' website (where all available ranges are described with pictures and - also very important - prices in a decent and practical lay-out)
- read about how we have solved problems for existing customers
- are easily redirected to our 'download' page for PDF leaflets and booklets (free - well, we get their email address for follow-ups)
- quickly add the feed to their RSS reader
- find the various categories
- see other 'visitors' commenting and/or asking us questions
Blog two: The Kiss Principle in Business, no more 'Double Dutch' in business (you've found it already) is my - as business manager/marketing director - learn/teach/tell blog.
This blog started after I'd written my (first, still only but who knows) business novel, which tells 'our story' as two Dutch people struggling and slowly succeeding as retail business in Kent U.K.
Besides telling remarkable good (or bad) business practise stories I encounter myself, books I read, other interesting blog post I find it was supposed to help me sell my novel.
So, redefinition (and re-vamping of the sidebar):
- Kiss2 should become a business 'network' blog, where I or others through comments tell about business practises - self-encountered or 'read-about' in books, blogs or newspapers in order "To make business simple".
- Encourage others to join in with comments: hence the added sidebar option: recent comments
- I'm proud of the novel I've written, so the link to the 'static' website' where the paperback or E-book version can be ordered has found a more pronounced position
Then there is my latest blog: stop/start ponderings on growing and growing pains. That's a personal blog, not really related to anything business wise, just a place where I 'ramble' around, my 'coffee-corner' which needs no redefining. I did change the lay-out a tiny bit and added the 'recent comments' category to it, just to keep in line with my overall definition of blogging: encourage conversation.
Ending on that note (encouraging conversation): so what y'all think?
(side-note: on personal branding, you might have noticed the change in 'nickname' from plain old Karin to Karin H. - that's me)