We are in a constant state of evolution. Over the past 10 years, blogging has expanded, contracted and expanded again further, in directions we never imagined. We share opinions and our knowledge about things we’re passionate about. We help our customers buy.
As I sit here on the plane going to St. Louis for a meeting, I’m listening to Mitch Joel’s awesome podcast, “Six Pixels of Separation”. He’s talking with Mark Schaefer, Rutgers University professor, blogger and all ’round good dude, about whether there’s anything new in blogging.
While some argue that blogging has plateaued, I believe we’re at the beginning of a new era in blogging. People and businesses are in a constant state of creativity. The challenges of the past few years have spurred a huge rise in new ideas. Regardless of the technology, it’s the people who bring the newness – they share a passion for a subject, express their opinion about it and new ideas grow from those conversations.
We’ve all become publishers. We share pieces of information to our network. Your dealership can be considered an authority just by the content you produce. Write your own content and watch your search ranking climb. But how do you effectively write your own content?
Everyone has a voice. In your store, the people who talk to your customers everyday know what your customers want and they have a lot to say. You become the publisher of your staff’s ideas and thereby participate in conversations with your customer.
Some of my colleagues may say that blogs are just a receptacle for keywords. They say, no need to bother staff with such trivial stuff – keep them focused on selling. But aren’t these conversations a form of prospecting and selling? I wish I could tell you how many times I’ve sat on the showroom floor during a down time and wished I had another way to talk to my customer.
I’m honored to be part of Triberr, a site where bloggers like me exchange content, generate traffic and build engagement around each other’s blogs. I’m seeing a lot of posts lately on the subject of Google’s Penguin update and how keywords are losing market share to more credible content.
- Francisco Rosales, of SocialMouths Blog, asks “Does Google+ matter for small business marketing?” In a guest post from Brad Schorr, he conveys that writing your own blog content and establishing authorship helps Google serve up more authoritative, reliable results in search.
- Shaan Haider, of GeekyStuffs Blog says, “The truth is Penguin is a warning shot for bloggers to stop basing their posts on keywords. Bloggers should be blogging. Blogging means informing your readers, building your brand, communicating, establishing a discussion, and forming a relationship with your customers. That is why Penguin is not only saving the Internet from crappy content but is also saving blogging by cutting down on keyword sniping.”
- Brian Hawkins, of HotBlogTips Blog says, “Consumers are now demanding constant media access to virtually every aspect of life around them. Today’s buyer wants access to your product and/or information 24/7; just as they do with their banking, health, communication, entertainment and so on.”
- John Jantsch, of DuctTapeMarketing Blog, says “Blogging has never been more critical. It’s the stablest form of SEO. High quality, education-based, properly formatted, highly linked to and consistently updated original content has never been penalized.
While Google+ is next to worthless as a “Social network” for dealers (as your customer is unlikely to be there with any kind of consistency), it’s mega-important to be there establishing your store as a trusted authority to Google. It’s nearly impossible to understate the power your blog and Google+ can wield. Google most likely intends to strengthen the connection between Google+ authors and search visibility so now is the time to start blogging if you haven’t already.
It’s all about the quality of your content. Facebook updates, Tweets, Videos or Blog posts, if your market audience deems it credible, it will get you traffic and leads. Create a speedy delivery system within your store for your front-line personnel to be part of your marketing content strategy.
Blogging is a spoke in your content marketing wheel. Your customer would like to engage with your store. Your staff would like to engage with your customer. Why not develop a process to connect those two and increase sales?