We love reading some of the Facebook forums especially Aussie Bloggers to Love. Other bloggers are great at putting intelligent questions out to the group and the blogging group generous in the advice they offer. What has been interesting of late is bloggers posting questions about companies approaching them asking for free mentions or posts. So with mum’s background as a Marketing Manager here is her take from the client side.
For the majority of marketers out there blogging is a great unknown. Most, especially at a senior level, have learnt their craft in a world of Free to Air TV driving big reach numbers and the emotional message. If budget allowed then this TV schedule might be supplemented by newspaper, magazine or even outdoor. Digital is still relatively new to them and for many the introduction has been via banner ads and page take overs where the purpose and style is similar to that of print or outdoor media (key message for reinforcement and frequency of message).
So what about blogging? While the format is digital it’s role in the marketing mix is very different. While blogging posts can deliver incremental reach, especially in the case of the big blogs, let’s face it… We are not in the realm of the +1 million viewers per episode for most of the prime time TV shows here in Australia. While people might be dual screening and skipping ads the good ol’ TV is still an important part of the marketing mix for the reach and depth of messaging it does bring. But what blogging does bring is that depth of messaging. An emotional connection. Rather than just a passive environment like TV or even print, most bloggers create an interactive environment. This is the real value that bloggers create. In many cases it is not the one-way communication that traditional media delivers but the much sought after conversation that so many marketers think they are seeking between their brand and their consumers.
Mum’s thought as a marketer is that bloggers should be charging and they should be charging a premium. It is not just about the actual sponsored post. Where bloggers can really add value to a brand is by facilitating that conversation. If bloggers are well briefed by a client (so some of this is on the client to brief bloggers properly but bloggers can also sell this benefit of a blog strategy to clients) than they can not only be spreading the word but they can be gaining valuable feedback to provide to the client by the comments left by blog readers. It is a lot like research but in the case of bloggers it is like chatting to a friend… something very valuable if you are a brand seeking feedback. An example of a business set up on this sort of model if Soup. Besides the basic reach (views) that bloggers use to sell themselves the real point of difference versus other media options open to a marketer is comments. Do you have “average comments per post” or something similar as a selling point on your media kit? That opportunity to access a two way conversation is what is in it for the brand marketers.
And now today’s dog blog. Going for a different topic from our Marketing Monday but one close to our heart. Jo over at Creature Clinic posted a great interview yesterday with Dr Lewis Kirkham about bringing a baby into a house where the fur kids have tradtionally been centre of attention before. We love reading Dr Jo’s posts. As a vet she has some great advice that she puts into a wonderfully practical form in her blog. She also has 2 young kids so some topics, such as this, are incredibly relatable for us. The relationship between us dogs and the little ones in the house is something we are extremely passionate about… in fact it is still the only rant we have had on the blog when an article we came across got my schackles up (and mum just got cranky). If you have time stop by Creature Clinic and Dr Jo even has a couple of signed copies of Dr Kirkham’s book which the interview is about to give away.
Hope you have enjoyed Dog Blog & Marketing Monday. Would love to hear your thoughts on how important comments are to your client sell story for those blogging commercially.