How to Start and Maintain a B2B Blog

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This course introduces prospective bloggers to the culture of the blogosphere and helps them prepare for the task of expressing themselves online. It includes advice on finding voice, identifying audience, blog promotion, reciprocal links, raising visibility through direct outreach, search engine optimization for blogs and tactics for driving traffic.

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How to Start and Maintain a B2B Blog

  1. 1. Paul Gillin, Author The New Influencers Secrets of Social Media Marketing Social Marketing to the Business Customer
  2. 2. <ul><li>Timely, frequently updated information </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple media types </li></ul><ul><li>Single voice </li></ul><ul><li>Fixed display </li></ul><ul><li>Flexible organization </li></ul><ul><li>Search engine performance </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Cheap and easy to create and update </li></ul><ul><li>Have distinct personal voice </li></ul><ul><li>Can quickly build traffic through reciprocal links </li></ul><ul><li>Excellent search engine performance </li></ul><ul><li>Modest revenue opportunity </li></ul><ul><li>Simple way to keep notes </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Reinforce </li></ul><ul><li>Brand </li></ul>
  5. 5. Thought Leadership
  6. 6. End Run Media
  7. 7. Define Culture
  8. 8. Educate Prospects
  9. 9. <ul><li>Build Trust </li></ul>
  10. 10. Title & Description Sidebar Individual Entry or “Post”
  11. 11. √ d Headline Subheads Fixed pages RSS feed Search Keywords
  12. 12. <ul><li>Have a clear focus </li></ul><ul><li>Update frequently </li></ul><ul><li>Speak distinctively </li></ul><ul><li>Have a point of view </li></ul><ul><li>Surprise and delight </li></ul><ul><li>Link to get links </li></ul><ul><li>Use all the media you can </li></ul><ul><li>Educate and assist </li></ul><ul><li>Ask for feedback </li></ul>
  13. 14. <ul><li>People have abundant choice; pick your spots </li></ul><ul><li>It’s fine to stray from your core topic, but keep 2/3 of entries relevant </li></ul><ul><li>Dedicate yourself to becoming THE expert in your chosen area </li></ul><ul><li>Tell people where you specialize </li></ul>Branding Search Health Care Customer Care Analytics Technology Strategy
  14. 15. <ul><li>Professional? </li></ul><ul><li>Enthusiast? </li></ul><ul><li>Peer? </li></ul><ul><li>Novice? </li></ul><ul><li>Investor? </li></ul><ul><li>Competitor? </li></ul><ul><li>Media </li></ul>You can’t communicate effectively with an audience you don’t know. When you write, visualize your reader. It may help to post a picture of that person on your office wall!
  15. 16. <ul><li>Read mainstream media and other bloggers and comment upon them </li></ul><ul><li>Frame issues in a context that reflects your expertise </li></ul><ul><li>Be offbeat and occasionally outrageous </li></ul><ul><li>Write in a voice that feels right to you </li></ul><ul><li>Think conversation, not lecture </li></ul><ul><li>Use multiple media </li></ul><ul><li>Mix it up: Top 10 lists, predictions, best & worst, link lists </li></ul>
  16. 19. <ul><li>Tag clouds and discovery sites show what’s new and topical </li></ul><ul><li>Bookmarking sites have element of surprise </li></ul>
  17. 20. <ul><li>Get angry </li></ul><ul><li>Aggregate other opinions </li></ul><ul><li>Tell a story </li></ul><ul><li>Conduct a poll </li></ul><ul><li>Make a list </li></ul><ul><li>Predict something, then defend </li></ul><ul><li>Recommend what you love </li></ul><ul><li>Discover and share </li></ul><ul><li>Serialize </li></ul><ul><li>Imagine having written a great article </li></ul><ul><li>Use keyword searches </li></ul><ul><li>Interview someone </li></ul><ul><li>Visit a quote site </li></ul><ul><li>Talk to children </li></ul><ul><li>Consult a notebook </li></ul><ul><li>Write case studies </li></ul><ul><li>Write about your week </li></ul><ul><li>Create a top 10 list </li></ul>
  18. 22. <ul><li>Ask yourself, “What’s the post about ?” </li></ul><ul><li>Say what you’re going to say, say it, then say what you just said. </li></ul><ul><li>Make your point at the outset </li></ul><ul><li>Limit the number of points you make in each entry </li></ul><ul><li>Invite feedback </li></ul>Rule of Thumb: If you have more than two key points, create a new entry
  19. 23. <ul><li>Use everyday words </li></ul><ul><li>Write as you speak </li></ul><ul><li>Write it like a letter </li></ul><ul><li>Keep sentences short </li></ul><ul><li>Use voice recognition or dictate into a recorder </li></ul><ul><li>Use Word readability stats </li></ul><ul><li>Ask a friend/spouse/ child to review your work </li></ul><ul><li>“ I didn't have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” </li></ul><ul><li>--Blaise Pascal </li></ul>
  20. 24. <ul><li>Start in the middle </li></ul><ul><li>Write freeform, then edit </li></ul><ul><li>Imagine a different scene </li></ul><ul><li>Start listing bullet points </li></ul><ul><li>Model someone else’s work </li></ul><ul><li>Take a walk </li></ul><ul><li>Tell story to a friend or colleague </li></ul>
  21. 25. <ul><li>Quiz : Test Your Engagement IQ </li></ul><ul><li>Skeptic : Why Marketers Fail at Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Case Study : How One Company Does it Right </li></ul><ul><li>Contrarian : Think You’re Engaged? Think Again </li></ul><ul><li>How To : Five Steps to Improving Customer Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>First Person: How I Learned to Engage </li></ul><ul><li>Comparison: How Two Companies Approach Customer Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Q&A: Five Common Questions About Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Data: Study Shines New Light on Customer Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Outrageous: Your Engagement Strategy Sucks </li></ul><ul><li>Humorous: Engagement Haiku </li></ul><ul><li>Offbeat: Engagement: The Movie </li></ul>
  22. 26. <ul><li>Current: Let’s Get Engaged! </li></ul><ul><li>Other Possibilities: </li></ul><ul><li>Five Goals for Customer Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Redefining Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement Scorecard </li></ul><ul><li>How Engaged Are Your Customers? </li></ul><ul><li>Why Marketers Fail at Engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Failing to Engage? Here’s Why </li></ul>
  23. 27. OK Labs uses &quot;social objects,&quot; or distinct icons, to create a memorable association. “It’s been a way for people to feel that they know the company before doing business with the company,” says Marti Konstant, VP of marketing
  24. 28. <ul><li>Link internally </li></ul><ul><li>Link externally </li></ul><ul><li>Use tags, categories </li></ul><ul><li>Register with aggregators </li></ul><ul><li>Ask for “link love” </li></ul><ul><li>Promote outbound links </li></ul><ul><li>File a site map </li></ul><ul><li>Bookmark and tweet </li></ul>
  25. 29. Link Opportunities Link to relevant blog entry or Quaero service
  26. 30. Begins as a tweet Becomes a blog entry Feeds a podcast Stokes a white paper That gets tweeted!
  27. 31. 32 million members 300 million members 44 million members 1 billion daily views 6 million daily visitors 50 million members 10 million members 1 million daily visitors 1.5 million daily visitors
  28. 32. <ul><li>Encourage and respond to comments </li></ul><ul><li>Comment elsewhere </li></ul><ul><li>Play reporter </li></ul><ul><li>Serialize </li></ul><ul><li>Use themes </li></ul><ul><li>Give stuff away </li></ul><ul><li>Complement with photos, podcasts & video </li></ul>
  29. 33. <ul><li>Traffic – unique visitors vs. page views </li></ul><ul><li>Technorati rankings </li></ul><ul><li>RSS subscriptions </li></ul><ul><li>Google linkto: and allinanchor: </li></ul><ul><li>De.licio.us and Technorati tags </li></ul><ul><li>Trackbacks </li></ul>
  30. 34. Paul Gillin 508-656-0734 [email_address] Site: gillin.com Blog: paulgillin.com Twitter: pgillin Free bi-weekly newsletter; sign up at gillin.com

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