Message, message, message. I’ll be honest; I fell into that trap for a while. When you’re churning out content for your corporate blog, this is a crucial consideration. You need to know that you’re saying all the right things to your target market … knowing that regulators, supply chain partners and your competitor are watching too. I’ve always been fanatical about messaging as a corporate blogger, and I still am. Along the way, though, I’ve learned that there’s more to corporate blogging than message – you need to watch your analytics, too.
To get the most value from your corporate blogging and social media marketing initiatives, you need to balance outbound and inbound, so to speak. Put as much thought into the analytics you receive as you do the content that you publish. Even if you use your analytics to make decisions about content and support other marketing initiatives, you’re leaving money on the table. Let’s take a look at four ways you can get more sales and marketing intelligence from your social media marketing environment and corporate blog:
1. Content strategy: often, you write corporate blog posts because your company wants to say something to the marketplace. This is classic message-driven communication. Meanwhile, there’s a lot you want to learn which may not reflect your company’s core message. Don’t neglect this issue. Write some blog posts that exist for no other purpose than to drive traffic to your site and feed you analytics you can use for marketing and sales intelligence.
2. The survey: do you use surveys to learn what’s on the collective mind of your target market? Well, your corporate blog can do some of this for you. Write blog posts that deal with single issues – don’t be afraid to get very specific. Take a look at who’s clicking on the story, and feed that information to your sales team. Of course, see #1 above to understand how this integrates with analytics-driven story selection.
3. Competitive intelligence: it isn’t completely unusual for companies to think before taking action, even if it doesn’t feel that way all the time. Before our competitors will launch a new initiative, they are likely to do some research, and you can bet they’ll be stopping by your corporate blog. Use your analytics to see what they are reading, and you’ll get a sense of what their strategy is. As you mature this approach to competitive intelligence, you can actually seed content on your blog that is intended to get a response from your competitors.
4. A leading edge: take #3 a step further: publish content based on what your competitors are reading. While they are figuring out how to take advantage of an issue in the marketplace, you’ll make it harder for them, as you’ll have first-mover advantage. You don’t need to make any bold or profound moves, but just by getting your foot in the door, you’ll be the first voice. Also, you’ll make the competition spend more time trying to figure out what you’re doing, which will delay their initiative and cost these companies timely results.