Blogging 101 for Catalogers
Is your company blogging yet? With the soaring cost of postage and pay-per-click advertising, blogging offers catalogers a powerful channel to get their message to prospects and customers worldwide. The cost is low. The impact is high. Here are 11 steps to get you started.
Add bloggers you like to your RSS reader. Follow their link-outs to find more bloggers. Intentionally oversubscribe to feeds. Aim for 50 feeds in your RSS reader by the end of the second week. Oversubscribing helps you understand which blogs keep your attention. It also lets you experience how readers decide to subscribe and unsubscribe. After you hit overload, pare down your reading list to a comfortable level.
Firms blog for many reasons:
* to attract prospective customers;
* to communicate with vendors;
* to establish expertise;
* to attract potential employees; and
* to communicate with Wall Street.
Different objectives dictate different writing styles and topics. For example, Google maintains one official blog in multiple languages (English version at www.googleblog.blogspot.com) for announcements and news. It has another 50 or so blogs for specific products. An example: Inside AdSense at www.adsense.blogspot.com. Google officially recognizes another 50 or so employee blogs. Check out Matt Cutts at www.mattcutts.com/blog or Christopher Sacca at www.whatisleft.org. While Matt Cutts can blog about the Spicy Chicken Sandwich at Jack in the Box, such a post would be out of place on Google’s main blog.
Treat the posts as public. Use this internal test period to work out technical, branding, visual or legal hurdles for a month or so. See what frequency of blogging your organization can support. I recommend two posts a week. Choosing a posting frequency and posting consistently builds readership.
Read Hugh MacLeod on increasing revenue at Stormhoek winery five-fold through blogging (www.gapingvoid.com/Moveable_Type/archives/003577.html).
Best of luck, and see you around the blogosphere!
Alan Rimm-Kaufman is CEO of the Rimm-Kaufman Group, an online agency helping catalogers manage paid search and improve site conversion. You can reach him at (434) 970-1010 or at www.rkgblog.com.