I remember, back last summer, Indianapolis Mayor Ballard saying something I thought was really important. Of course, he was talking about the new Lucas Oil Stadium, not about blogs, but the reason Ballard’s statement comes to mind right now is that, as you’ll see, the principle’s the same for stadiums and online business marketing.
"I never look at Lucas Oil by itself. I always look at it in conjunction with the expanded convention center," Ballard said. "If people have been paying attention at all, they understand this has done more for conventions than for the Colts," he added.
People have been paying attention to blogs. In fact, in the few seconds it’s taken you to click on this page and read this far down into my blog, thousands of new blogs will have "gone live" online. But, just as people became enamored of Lucas Oil Stadium’s sheer size and newness, (forgetting that the real long-term benefits to their city would come from areas not directly related to football), I think business owners can get enamored with blogs for the sheer size and relative newness of the blogosphere.
Effective business blogging drives traffic. But traffic has to have a destination in order to bring any dollars to the bottom line. So (to continue with my not-so-far-fetched comparison), the convention center needed to be expanded and new hotels build in order for the city of Indianapolis to reap the benefits of their big new football stadium. For blogs to give "bang for the buck" to a business, the website needs to be revamped. I don’t mean just coordinating key words to link to search terms used in the blog, but designing the website for convert "lookers" into buyers.
"The direct and indirect effects of a corporate blog can be amazing," says Paul Woodhouse, one of the first British business leaders to use blogging strategy.
My caution, though: Remember the convention center in Indianapolis, and remember that your website and your overall online marketing strategy (your blog is just one tactic within that overall strategy). When it comes to corporate blogging strategy, by all means think big. Perhaps even more important, think smart.