Blog For Your Audience, Not Your Product

Photo cred: Felipe Trucco

Photo cred: Felipe Trucco

Should all businesses start a blog? Will they all benefit from starting a blog? This has been a big question that many businesses are asking as social media develops into a relevant business tool. There are a range of views on this matter, as this question fueled a great discussion on this week’s #blogchat. Here are my thoughts on the issue…

Whether or not you should start a blog has less to do with your product, and more to do with your customers and your audience. During #blogchat, someone described a company that sells pools as a company that shouldn’t blog…because who wants to read a blog about pools right? This person was basing their decision on the product without looking at the big picture.

You have to figure out what is valuable to your audience. For the pool company, they could start a blog about anything pertaining to pools that will help their audience and provide value. Blog about pool deck designs, cool new pool toys and tools, how to throw pool parties, pool care tips etc. You don’t have to blog about your product and what you have to offer; in fact you’re better off not blogging all about your product.

Take my blog as an example. I am looking for a job and so my product is myself. If I blogged only about myself, and what I have to offer companies, I would have absolutely no readers. I blog about things that (I think) are valuable to my audience. By doing this, I prove my knowledge in the industry, create awareness of my product, build trust with my customers, and ultimately sell my product (get a job)…hopefully.

A great example of a company creating a community around their product’s “big picture” is Dell.  They have a few different blogs that provide info for small businesses, education, and other areas of their audience’s interest.  Many of the topics that Dell discusses have very little to do with their products.  After providing content of value however, their customers are more receptive when Dell also posts information about the company and it’s products.

Look at the big picture, blog for your audience.

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7 Responses to Blog For Your Audience, Not Your Product

  1. I advocate all businesses (small ones especially) to invest in a blog rather then a clunky ajaxed site. The CMS is free, hosting is cheap and often you can drive more traffic (and achieve better SEO) with a blog.

    The reason? Every small business is a niche blog waiting to be tapped. Think about all the content and expertise that you have within your field. It usually tends to be a lot.

    David you are doing all the right things, building up reputation, participating on Twitter, commenting on different blogs and guest posting at places like Mashable.

    • David Spinks says:

      I agree that a blog is better than a lot of the poorly developed sites I’ve seen small businesses use. In an interview today the interviewer said that he barely looked at my resume because he learned pretty much everything he needed to know from my blog. Businesses can create the same advantage with their customers (if done right) where the customers understand the company better than what an “about page” on a website will tell them. It serves as evidence of their knowledge/expertise.

      Thanks for the kind words Stuart.

  2. amymengel says:

    David – it was indeed a great discussion on #blogchat this week. The big picture is what helps you find an audience. Burt Dumars from Newell Rubbermaid was on the chat for a bit and shared their company blogs for the Graco, Sharpie and Rubbermaid divisions. The Graco Heart to Heart blog, for example, is more to do with kids and parenting than specifically Graco strollers or highchairs, but it still allows them to connect and reach their target audience (http://blog.gracobaby.com/)

    People typically don’t want to read about products, so creating a blog around a niche that your product fills is a great way to engage customers.

    @amymengel

  3. Great insight, David. I don’t know how many people I’ve met that have missed this message.

    I like the blog and plan on reading more in the future,

    Brian
    cleverwebtech.com

  4. Hank Kammes says:

    I am glad to find all the informations I needed only on your web page. I hope I will likely be abble to complete additional my project about Graco mosaic stroller

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