“A blog is neither a diary nor a journal. Many people think of blogging in relation to those two things, confessional or practical. It is neither but includes elements of both.”
-Lemn Sissay, Author & Broadcaster
RISE OF BLOGGING
It’s safe to say blogging is on the rise. As of July 2016, the official count of blogs on Yahoo’s Tumblr has grown to 305.9 million. That’s a pretty aggressive and steady trend. The same report shows that only five years before (May 2011) Tumblr had 17.5 million blogs. Tumblr is only one sight for blogging. Generally speaking, blogs can seem to be a person’s online “journal” or “diary”. WordPress reports “409 million people view 22.9 billion (blog) pages each month.” Blogs are written at a rate of “65.4 million new posts per month.” But how many blogs represent what blogging really is? Is it really just an outlet for mothers to vent their daily routines or businesses to sell their products? Don’t get angry “Mommy Bloggers”. We see you found your niche and capitalized on an opportunity to make a little extra moolah (like $50,000 or so). You’re the real MVPs. Blogs are a powerful tool for almost any content marketing strategy. Its versatility has led to its rise.
BLOGGING IS A CHANNEL, NOT A JOURNAL
Blogging is so much more than an online journal, it’s a channel that requires management. Blogging can create opportunities to share your story in several media types. Gone is the day of simply writing a post about your McDonald’s “Happy Meal’s” ability to remain youthful in appearance. Today, blog managers (yes, it is a full time job in some cases) “host videos, podcasts, text articles, news topics, sell affiliate advertising, provide instruction or insight” and generally provide an outlet for content. So you might wonder, “What is Content Marketing if Blog Management manages so much content?” I’m glad you asked. Researchers looked at that very question. Let’s look at the difference.
CONTENT MARKETING STRATEGY
Content Marketing is a function of a business that focuses on presenting media (content) that will create interaction and serve one of four goals:
- Be Shared
- Be Discussed
- Generate Leads
- Make Sales
A Content Marketing Strategy will likely employ a blog. That is one of its tools. It may use one or more blogs to drive interaction and ultimately create an experience. It’s about exposure, influencing thought, building leads, and maximizing sales potential at a relatively low cost (when done right).
TOP CONTENT MARKETING STRATEGY TOOLS
There can be quite a bit of variance on what tools “experts” believe work best. You will have to fine-tune your list to fit your company marketing and branding campaigns. In the meantime, you can look to employ these top three Content Marketing Strategy tools to get your feet wet in the marketplace.
- Interactive Content: I think this is the future. I don’t know of any field that will not see a need to have an interactive content strategy in the next 10 years. That can vary dramatically from virtual reality, to something like IKEA’s app that allows users to “place” furniture from their catalog in their home.
- Location-based content: Are you working with Foursquare? Are people able to check in? How are you interacting with online reviews for “brick and mortar” locations?
- Visual content: Are you keyed in to Snapchat? Google+? How is your Facebook and Twitter page? Whether you are going after social media followers or creating a Banner Ad strategy, selecting the right visual will play an important role in success on the web. Personalize and present visual media that will lead to shares, interactions, and your personal business goals.