July 21, 2008
by Gail Dutton
Word-of-mouth has taken on a whole new meaning with the growth of the blogosphere, opening doors to both international and local markets. Blogs forge a personal connection with readers, adding local perspectives vital for successful international marketing.
“Blogs talk with customers, not at them,” says Chris Alden, CEO of Six Apart, an international developer of blogging tools. International companies therefore need in-country experts, or at least bloggers with significant experience there, to connect to local markets. For example, a U.S.-based law firm with offices in Germany should have a link to its blog on its main website, with one of its German attorneys blogging about new regulations and court decisions. The blog itself should have links to relevant German articles.
And companies in many countries should have region-specific blogs. An American winery that exports internationally, for instance, can have links to local sites discussing restaurants, food and wine pairings, and other related topics. Links drive traffic to your blog, Alden says, so “post as frequently as you have something new and useful to contribute.”
It’s not just the CEO or head of marketing who knows how to articulate a company’s vision, Alden points out. “Find a voice to match the enterprise,” he says. Companies in multiple countries may have blog postings from multiple authors in those countries.
See full article PC WORLD – BUSINESS CENTRE
Gail Dutton is a freelance writer in Montesano, Washington, specializing in business and technology.
August 19, 2007
Planning and Creating a Website
- Know who your audience is and have a route into your website via the Home page for each target audience.
- Focus the page(s) so that it provides the solutions needed by that particular target audience.
Plan the Visitor Journey
It is essential for you to KNOW each particular target audience so that you can be incredibly specific and focused. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes (for each different customer) and “walk” the journey that you would want them to take. You have, apparently, 7 seconds to capture their attention.
This process should stop you from writing waffle and should concentrate your mind on writing good content. Don’t write things aimed to suit everyone … write specific content for a specific target audience…and write as though you are talking directly to them; write as you would naturally speak.
You need to focus so that your customers walk the journey you want them to take and then they should take the action you want them to take … you must have a CALL TO ACTION, such as to register for a free newsletter OR submit an enquiry. Always ensure that you have a THANK YOU page to let them know that you have received their request (it makes them feel as though you are interested in them – which naturally you are) and it is MEASURABLE.
Having established your Visitor Journey (for each target audience) which should end with a CALL to ACTION, check whether they can get from beginning to end within 3 or so clicks?
Always use CONTACT FORMS to encourage contact from your Visitors rather than displaying your email address as this will avoid “spammers” being able to capture your email details.
Updating your content
Don’t leave the content static because Search Engines won’t rate the site highly. Equally your visitors like re-visiting a site which is “lively”.
The HOME page should be an active part of your marketing; an organic, ever-changing, interesting, “worth a visit” kind of place. Make a point of putting effort into your website – treat it like a new (but highly promising member of staff) – you will be rewarded by your input.
Another easy way to keep content updated is to have a blog, linked to your website … again the key is “good content” and keeping it updated … daily is perfect … weekly is OK … less often and it might not be worth the effort.
August 19, 2007
The Telegraph Business Club website is an excellent resource which I haven’t, until now, made regular use of. Having performed a quick search, I found an article about a topic which is near the top of my “to be reseearched” list… namely, about blogging…specifically, it discusses what employers should be doing to advise employees about blogging activity…
Does your company have a policy on blogging?
“A new survey by workplace experts Croner has revealed that more than a third of ‘blogging employees’ are posting information about their employer, workplace or colleagues on personal blog sites.
The survey, carried out for Croner by YouGov, asked employees about whether or not they kept a personal blog. Of those who responded and said that they did, 39pc admitted that they had posted details, which could be potentially sensitive or damaging about their place of work, employer or a colleague.
A blog is the posting of a personal website based diary on the internet. These postings can be viewed potentially by anyone, anywhere in the world, and because the postings are archived, may be accessible for some time afterwards. Blogging although a burgeoning state in the UK, carries a far greater risk for both employers and employees now than in future years. That is why Croner is advising businesses to consider now the potential impact blogging may have on their business.
[full article available :- http://www.telegraphbusinessclub.co.uk/default.asp?p_id=home ]
So, in summary, blogging is here … employers and employees need to be aware of what is appropriate and what is not …
In my opinion, blogging is no longer just the domain of the “personal diary” and is rapidly becoming part of the Marketing and PR strategy of businesses … everyone in business needs to be aware of it and needs to make a decision about how to use it (or not).