Blog marketing is a relatively new form of internet marketing which relies on blogs as the vehicle of advertising. Because blogs are so good at attracting search engine traffic, and because their format lends itself to them being updated frequently and easily, many small businesses and corporations have found blog marketing to be an ideal way to stay in touch with their customer base and increase their search engine exposure at the same time. Blog marketing is looked at as one of the cornerstones of a strong internet advertising campaign, and has additionally become an important vehicle for customer relations and public relations.
At their core, blogs are just websites that display information in a specific way. Because of the robust back-end updating systems, though, they lend themselves to being updated by members of a company or marketing team easily and quickly. And because of a strong integrated commenting system, they encourage customer participation, feedback, and viral marketing. For these reasons, they are seen not only as a strong supplement to an existing company website, but in many ways a greater force in terms of reaching out to new and existing customers.
Many companies use blog marketing because it is relatively easy to attract inbound links from other sites. While many sites may be reluctant to link to a corporate site, a blog often feels much more human and interesting, and therefore other blogs and online directories may be fine linking to it. This solves one of the great dilemmas of businesses trying to adapt to the world of online marketing, where often the best advertising does not come in the form of paid ads, but in word of mouth and direct linking.
In order to successfully leverage blog marketing, it is first necessary to create a blog that is interesting to a wide base of internet users. Many companies have found that by giving their employees a relatively free voice in discussing life at the company, they create resources people are fascinated by. Seeing the inner workings of major corporations is enthralling for many people, and a blog gives a seemingly uncensored view into that world. Other companies have their CEOs, CFOs, or Presidents post on a company blog, giving people a view from the top.
In addition to advertising, blog marketing also offers a great opportunity to reach out to customers. New product releases, for example, can be announced on a blog, immediately informing the blogs regular readers, and giving them an easy place to link to in their own communications, creating the potential for buzz to form within hours of a product release, or even in advance of it. Blog marketing vehicles also act as public relations vehicles, as miscommunications or problems with the public can be addressed directly on a blog, and the tone and feel of blogs lends them to feeling much more personable than a standard press release.
The people attracted by blog marketing may also be enticed to actively participate in the business through direct feedback. Commenting tools on blogs allow users to give their feedback immediately on everything from new product drops, to new advertising campaigns, to major shifts at the company. This is not only a form of outreach, but also acts as a vessel for businesses to get new ideas, and free and wide-ranging market research.