Blogging Like It’s Your Day job! Oh Wait, But It Is.

There are some people in this world that really enjoy sitting in front of their computer monitor for hours on end. And no, I’m not referring to those who use the internet for playing games and socializing with friends. But instead, I’m giving kudos to the powerful voices who publish information that is respected, content that has a purpose, and content that compels its reader and leaves them with a desire for more.
Blogging has become a career for many talented artists. Being an artist doesn’t mean you have to paint a picture with paint. There are many artists who portray their talent through putting their thoughts and opinions to paper via lyrics. And in the world of content and marketing, these are three of the people who put their fingers to the keyboard the best:

Mitch Joel
Seth Godin
Bernadette Jiwa

My professor for creative content development, Robin Pepper, taught us the key components of a successful blog, and how to use it essentially as your umbrella for marketing. Let’s take a look at the following blog homes for the blogging brains listed above. Click on their names to be directed to their blog home page, let me know what you think!

Do they have what it takes

Well of course they do. But it was assigned to me to analyze and critique the blogs of these authors so, here it goes.

Mitch Joel

Mitch Joel

So first up we have Mitch Joel who is a journalist and publicist. He’s the author of his own blog titled “Six Pixels of Separation”. You’ll find a majority of his posts are heavily related to marketing communications. That’s not surprising considering back in 2006; Mitch Joel was named one of the most influential authorities on blog marketing. His blog has a reliable schedule. You can guarantee you’ll see posts from this genius every other day, if not every day. It’s like his brain automatically re-generates with an abundant of knowledge every time he clicks post on his dashboard. His topics vary within the cloud of marketing and advertising which keeps viewers interested and ready to absorb something new. His content is entertaining, engaging and compelling. He writes the way he speaks and he doesn’t over think. He asks questions, tells the reader what to do and where to go, but what I think is excellent is that he’s very engaged and active with his online community of followers. He provides opportunities for interaction through his social media sites through contests and giveaways. The layout of his blog design is clean and concise, it’s easy to navigate and on the left side bar is where you can find archives, recent posts, RRS feed and an email you can subscribe to. The only thing I’m noticing is at the end of his blogs, there are no tags provided to enhance SEO. I’m surprised that for such a popular marketing man that he has very minimal shares, likes, comments etc… Maybe this is an area of opportunity for improvement! But overall his blog is great, the posts don’t drag on to the point of glaze over, but they’re long enough for me to read through and actually, I mean actually read the full thing.

Seth GodinNext I’m going to take a look at Seth Godin’s blog page, titled “Typepad”. Seth Godin is an American author, entrepreneur, marker and public speaker. His blog caters to his perspectives in the marketing field. I would say that Seth has a unique way of relaying his perceptions to his readers. His blogs are short and sweet, but they get the point across. Every post has a point, and he doesn’t seem to fail trying to mark it. He uses metaphors to get his point across, whether it’s one, two or three per post. This is what makes his content most interesting, in my opinion. He is very knowledgeable in his ideas, and his blog headlines are consistently enticing. You can find Seth posting daily or every second day. I consider him to be a direct writer who is not intimidated to say what he feels he needs to in order to get his point across. The layout of his blog is simple, white background and fine print text. The structure of the blog is easy to navigate, as you can find archives, recent posts, RRS, Twitter and Facebook links, content sharing icons as well as an e-mail subscription section. Unlike Mitch Joel, Seth has a significant amount of consumer engagement on his posts. His community of followers spoil him with over a thousand re-tweets, and hundreds of Facebook likes as well as Google+ and LinkedIn shares.

Bernadette Jiwa

Bernadette Jiwa

Last we have the author of the blog titled, “The story of Telling”, Bernadette Jiwa. This woman is amazing. When I read her blog posts I feel a genuine authentic essence. Not only is the visual design and construct of her blog page warm and extremely visually appealing, but her content has soul. Her blog is primarily focused on brand strategy, brand naming and brand story. Although she doesn’t post every day, but maybe every 3 days on average, her posts are just as good. Her content is short and sweet just like Seth Godin, but the difference here is that she incorporates rich media! Finally, something other than copy. She incorporates meaningful images and videos that relate directly with her topics. I believe that incorporating visuals as Bernadette does enhances your readers experience, and also adds visual diversity. Letters can get boring after a while, don’t you think? Bernadette engages her audience by asking questions and providing opportunities for their comments and opinions. Just like the previous blogs I discussed above, her blog page is accompanied by contact and connect outbound links to her social media sites as well as RRS. In my eyes, Bernadette did an excellent job with establishing a connection with the viewer on the other side of the screen.

Ultimately, it’s all about the connection established with your reader at the end of your session. Take a look at your viewer engagement. Are people leaving comments? Sharing your content within their social sites? If you can say yes, then pat yourself on the back for a job well done.
Anyone can be a publisher through social mediums, but what makes a good blogger is someone who’s content is authentic, compelling and, well… people actually care to read it. You don’t need to be an expert in marketing or advertising to begin your own community. All it takes is creativity, some flare, and a voice that people will want to listen to again, and again, and again.

Advertisements

Don’t Worry, Be Content

The evolution of marketing has made its streak in society over the past decades. We’ve watched business advertise their brands through traditional mediums including print, TV and radio. Although these channels are being used by businesses today, do readers and viewers still find these sources as stimulating as they used to? Unfortunately not.

Digital Marketing holds the crown in terms of how products and services are being promoted in today’s industry. Although there are many online features and platforms for a business to promote their products through, the most important aspect to digital marketing is in fact the CONTENT, that is being published. You can have heaps of content regarding your topic, but at the end of the day how valuable is your content to the person sitting on the other side of the screen? Is it going to spark interest and perhaps enable conversation? Is the information you’re publishing going to help the reader solve an issue they have? There are so many things content can deliver! You’re conveying a story if done correctly, and the objective is to entice the reader with rich information and build a relationship. You want them coming back for more, right? Exactly!

Valuable content, content marketing, digital content, consumber behaviour, social media, social development, content curation

The Importance of Valuable Content

When you provide effective content you build a relationship with your audience. You’re both there for the same reason, getting to know each other on a personal level. Whether you’re the one looking for a solution, or the one providing it, you both share that passion for the product or service at hand. All businesses want profits, but it’s most important to understand what the customer or prospective customer wants, and it’s your job to establish the best tactic and strategies to meet those needs.

Quality Content, Creation and Distribution

There are many ways in which intriguing content can be created.  Always remember that the primary purpose of creating content is to provoke and engage in conversation with your customer. There is an array of possibilities to choose from when you’re creating content. Think about topic and information pieces that provide room for questions and responses from the viewers. Like I mentioned before, you want to build a relationship with the viewer, you want them coming back for more.  An article from Webs 9 states that ultimately, it goes beyond just providing your viewer with a positive experience and content that informs, entertains and makes their lives better. Whether it’s a product or service you’re providing information about, or just providing your own personal opinions, the viewer wants to know and feel like you care about them.

Content curation is fantastic, but you as a writer are going to want fresh context, opinions, insights and perspectives! I came across this info graphic which provides great ways to create compelling content when, well… you don’t even have a clue! Some of these Include:

  • Interview People such as luminaries
  • Ask your readers about their thoughts
  • Share your success and failures
  • Converse within your online community
  • Monitor social trends
  • Host an event

Context is great, but in today’s content marketing and advertising society that isn’t enough. You need to add more simulating and captivating content to attract and retain the viewer’s attention and extract a response, tweet, share or any type of involvement action. So besides contextualizing and distributing content for your target audience, what other valuable digital assets could be added to your social sites? Take rich media for example.  People like real-time photos, videos and action. It creates a sense of trust between a viewer and the product or service. Instead of just writing about it, why don’t you show them! Take your blog for example. When you publish content, context isn’t the only thing on your page, right? Right. You include photos, videos, twitter feed and in bound and out bound links to other webpages for example. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and they’re right. Take a look at this web page I recent read about social media and the effect of visual content. Ekaterina Walker mentions that a study was conducted in 2012. ROI Research found that when users engage with friends on social media sites, it’s the pictures they took that are enjoyed the most.

44% of respondents are more likely to engage with brands if they post pictures than any other media.

Photos and videos have become one of our default modes of sorting and understanding the vast amounts of information we are exposed to every day. On a daily basis, people don’t have time to sit around and write 1000 word blogs, there for we compensate lengthy context with tweets, posts, likes, sharing, re-tweeting and uploading to our social platforms.  We love in a society where we are bombarded with content overload, therefore publishers need to make sure the content they posted via Twitter, Facebook, Blogger, Pinterest or whatever the social site may be, holds value. Every word, every sentence, every photo. And depending on what social channel you are publishing content to, determines what type and the amount of content that will be distributed.

Social media channels, blogs, facebook, twitter, linkedin, brand integration, web marketing, digital content, valuable content is important

Social Media Channels

Content on social platforms is like picking out the right purse for the day. As a woman, we have many to choose from in our closet. Just as we do social sites. But for the most part, they all serve the same purpose. Like how valuable content entices interest, engages in conversation and communication with the viewers. We wouldn’t use the same purse for a day of shopping at the Eaton’s Center as we would if we were going out for dinner. When shopping, we would want to bring a large purse so we can fill it with larger purchases, like a blog post and its larger amounts of information. If we were going out for dinner, we would bring a small purse only large enough to hold lip gloss, gum and credit cards.  Similar as posting a Tweet.