Promotional vs. Informational Business Blogging: Which One Is Right for Your Company

September 8, 2015

Business Blogging


If you run a business, you probably understand that there are various aspects of being an entrepreneur.  You have to have your finger in every pie.  And the pies include production, marketing, sales, human resources, administration etc.  The final aim of any business might be to increase sales.  However, becoming well-known in your field, being respected for your opinions and developing good relationships with clients are also important, partly in themselves and partly because they help towards that ultimate goal of increasing sales.


No matter what your aim, you can use business blogging to move you further towards it.  According to this article from Huffington Post, you can use business blogging for various reasons, from expressing your brand identity to attracting industry talent.  So your first step, when setting up a blog, might be to clarify exactly what you’re looking for out of it.  On the other hand, you can also just set up a blog and see where it goes, because it is going to benefit you in one way or the other.  Here are two different approaches you can take when it comes to business blogging:


PROMOTIONAL BLOGGING


This type of blog is generally used to inform customers about your product or service and its various benefits i.e., it is used to promote your business.  Many businesses start blogs with the intention of promoting their products or services.  Later on, they might add other aims or goals but promotion is often where it begins.



  • Providing Information About Your Product.  There are many ways in which you can use your blog to promote your product or service.  The most straightforward way of doing so is by putting descriptions of your products and services on your blog.  If you make any changes to your products or services, you could also use your blog to bring these to your customers’ attention.  Tell them why the product is going to be better in its new avatar.
  • Appealing to Different Demographics.  You can only go so far with product and service descriptions on your blog.  After that, you’re going to run out of material to write about.  So you’ll need to innovate a little.  Think about how your product or service would be beneficial to different types of people.  You don’t need to appeal only to a certain demographic.  You can also try to attract a different clientele by writing in a way that appeals to them.
  • Malcolm Gladwell and Hush Puppies.  Malcolm Gladwell writes about Hush Puppies in his book, The Tipping Point.  He tells us how Hush Puppies were a type of shoe that used to appeal mostly to conservative, middle-aged men.  However, they were dying out in popularity around 1994 and the company that made them was about to stop production.  However, certain hipsters started wearing them and there was a sudden surge in their popularity once again.  You can keep this example in mind and write blog posts that will appeal to different demographics.  If the popularity of your product diminishes in one market, you’ll at least have another one to fall back on.

INFORMATIONAL BLOGGING


Information has always been a form of currency; it can be traded for various things, including products and services.  It also enables you to do many things you want to do.  For example, you can get information about the cheapest place to buy a certain product and thus save money.  You can get information about the various ways to use a product; this will help you make the best use of it.  You can get information about the pros and cons of various brands and make the best possible decision about which brand to buy.  The list goes on and on.



  • How Do We Use Information? Most of us look for information about something or the other every day.  For example, we might look on the internet to see what movies are playing in our vicinity.  We might call a bookstore to see if they have a particular book.  We might look at restaurant reviews to see if the place we’re thinking about dining at is a good one.
  • Helping Your Customers.  This article from Forbes suggests that the number one component of a good business blog includes an answer to the question: “how will it help my audience?”  If you can create blog posts that are helpful to your customers, by providing them with the information they need, you’ll soon make your blog indispensable for them.
  • Exploring Various Aspects of a Topic.  The information you provide can be anything that your clients might possibly be looking for.  For example, if you sell kitchen equipment, you can inform your clients about various ways to use this equipment, recipes for items that can be prepared with the help of this equipment, diet tips, kitchen interior decoration tips, tips for throwing a dinner party (in which the food is prepared using the equipment you sell) etc.
  • Becoming a Thought Leader in Your Field.  Taking an informational approach can help you to become a thought leader in your field.  Given that you’ll be covering every aspect of the topic that you’re writing about, it’s quite likely that you’ll become the go-to source when people are looking for information about that topic.  This is similar to how IMDB is the go-to source for movie information or WebMD is the go-to source (or one of several go-to sources) for medical information.
  • Service Companies Leverage Information. John Sampson, the owner and founder of Zip Locksmith, a locksmith company in Seattle, has seen huge benefits from creating a blog that informs his customers on the questions they’re asking. He explains that by answering the questions he knows his customers are searching for, he’s going to attract them to his site through keyword searches, and then has a great chance of converting them.

Whether you decide to take a promotional approach or an informational approach (or a combination of the two) a business blog can help you fulfill your aims and open up new avenues for your business

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