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Blogging As A Web 2.0 Marketing Tool

Nov 17, 2007
It is essential to get traffic and links from the leading bloggers in the field that is being focused on, by a business' blog or website. This is important for building up readership and thus ensuring success of the marketing effort, as the website can attract a larger number of prospective clients or customers.

It often happens that bloggers do not respond to pitches sent through email and, so, it is difficult to get them to provide a link to the business' site on their own web pages. This could be on account of paucity of time available with them or the quality of content not being up to their expectations.

However, these hurdles could be overcome, to a large extent, by reaching out to the bloggers and building a personal relationship with them, as far as possible.

If the blog or website has content that is remarkable and relevant, it should not be too much of a problem to obtain links. Things could be much simpler, though, if a relationship that is fairly close and consistent is built, by according high priority to establishing contact with the bloggers.

Getting media exposure can lead to a lot of people being interested, including prospective customers or clients. The question is whether reporters, who, at times, are underpaid and overworked, can be caused to become interested enough. The key to achieving this could be to treat journalists as a market segment that has to be targeted and to regularly provide relevant information to them, so that trust is developed. This could prove to be the foundation stone for a long-term, symbiotic kind of a relationship.

Therefore, the names of journalists that are likely to take interest in the content being offered can be compiled into a prospect list. It is then important to keep track of their blogs as well as the news stories done by them. Relevant content can then be routinely pushed to them, in accordance with the stories they cover.

Depending upon the interest that they are likely to have in services and products specifically offered by the business, power to spend, loyalty to a particular brand of product, etc., the people who could be purchasers, clients or customers, potentially, are defined by marketers as prospects.

Marketers should be looking at those bloggers or site owners who, besides channeling targeted traffic to the company's website or blog, can aid in brand building. Therefore, it is significant to target those who have considerable influence in a particular sphere or niche, so that a core bunch of prospects can be established.

If this core group is targeted effectively, instead of a large set of people, it should become possible to get some to react favorably and to obtain recommendations that should help influence those who are amongst their audience. So, the benefits of building a list of prospects can be substantial.

Once a list of prospects has been developed, it is important to seek their permission before proceeding with communication on a regular basis, say, through electronic means such as a newsletter sent through email.

It can mean better returns on the effort, if a substantial number of opt-ins is available at the beginning. However, it is far easier to obtain opt-ins when contact is made initially, than at a later stage.

Such permissions should be sought from all those who come in contact with the marketers, whether contact is established through the website or through advertisements (online or offline), email, direct mail, seminars, trade shows, etc.

The following guidelines should prove to be of assistance, in this regard:

1. The prospects should be informed clearly that they could unsubscribe whenever they wish to do so. Also, their contact details should not be shared with any other company and this should be conveyed to them in no uncertain terms.

2. Techniques and tips, industry trends, strategies, case studies, etc., which could be of interest and of some value to the prospects, should also be included, in addition to information about services or products, the company and its website.

3. If possible, the option to receive content that is tailored according to their specific requirements should be provided to the prospects that opt-in.
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