In a recent post about blogging as a powerful inbound marketing tool, I talked about how to leverage a blog. I said that brands need a blog. I missed an opportunity to discuss one small group of very important brands that won’t benefit from a blog. So I’m going to do a little course correction on that point. Blogging isn’t for everyone, and I don’t mean from the writing aspect, I mean also from the product standpoint.
A blog is meant to educate, engage, and inform your website visitors. However, there exceptions to this rule. I have a client the sells certified document copies to people. Replacing a birth certificate with a legally certified copy would be an example. Now, unless someone is really unorganized or scattered, they aren’t going to need his service on a regular basis, so a blog isn’t a good fit for his marketing. People won’t be coming back to see the latest trends or technology in birth certificates right?
There is a solid marketing direction for him in the form of informational articles, common questions answered, and a social media presence. That is the right direction for his brand. So when someone discovers they need a copy of a birth certificate, they think of his company because of regular appearances on social media.
Many businesses are on fire to get a blog going, but it may not be the best use of their marketing time and dollars. And that’s something I try to get right from the beginning with a client and determine who their client base is. I have had startups as well as seasoned businesses tell me they aren’t really sure who their demographic is. It’s not hard to sort out, and it’s fun to work with a client to really hone their message to the group most likely to be interested and buy. Yet another reason I am downright evangelical about buyer personas.
When you’re building a buyer persona, you can normally get super detailed with it. Sometimes, you have to change it up a little to fit the brand you’re marketing for. People from all walks of life, educational backgrounds, and areas of the country are going to need a copy of a birth certificate at some point. You have to build your buyer persona a little differently sometimes and limit it to the event that causes the person to need my client’s service. Another example would be a disaster clean-up company. No one is going to be hitting up a blog on their site until they are in the unfortunate position of needing that service. That is why for some industries, informational pages will perform better for the brand than blog posts that immediately begin aging the minute you post them. Visitors expect a blog to be regularly updated with posts, you need to determine early on if there are enough engaging topics for your brand. Nothing, but nothing looks worse than a blog that is gathering dust.
As far as reasons for needing a birth certificate, turns out there are eight main reasons and a lot of sub-reasons for that. We also found 82% of people looking for “birth certificate copies” and “how to replace a birth certificate” did so from mobile devices, so visuals, getting to the point fast of answering their query, and speed will count. Knowing how your ideal audience connects is another important element when you’re building a marketing plan.
Once we knew how to target, coming up with content was easy. The writers and I would bounce ideas off each other, “I am going to college and I lost my birth certificate, what am I going to look up or ask to get one?” or “I need to enroll my kid in summer camp or soccer, and during one of our moves I lost his birth certificate. What questions might I be asking?” More dogs than you think have chewed up their owner’s birth certificates. You get the idea.
To wrap it up, you can see that a blog isn’t an absolutely must have for everyone. A buyer persona is a must have for targeting your message. Take a step back and look at your brand. Do you really need a blog or will another direction for your marketing fit the bill better?