Is your Company Missing out on this great opportunity?
“Many Australian companies are missing out on an insanely brilliant opportunity to connect with customers and other stakeholders.
And while the ball has potentially been dropped by the PR or marketing departments, the blame should be sheeted home to the CEO.
I’m talking about establishing and nurturing a content-rich blog (as part of a well-considered content marketing strategy – but it’s the blogging that I want to focus on).
If you’re a CEO and your organisation has not got a blog (or at least a ‘socialised’ online newsroom): why on earth not?
As the leader of an organisation with multiple stakeholders, you could be using a blog as an interactive platform to drive discussion around important issues, establish industry thought-leadership, educate customers and help provide solutions to their problems (relevant to your business). This is before the potential benefits of increased SEO are taken into account.
Now, before I drop too much of the blame at the feet of PR and marketing people, I’ve met many clever and passionate people in those departments who were keen to pursue a blog for their organisation only to have the initiative stymied either by the ‘C suite’, legal or IT departments (or combination thereof).
When I say ‘blog’, essentially I’m talking about an online platform that can be leveraged by a company to spread ideas, generate conversation and build rapport with relevant and interested audiences.
A blog isn’t necessarily just text, either. It can just as easily house video content, audio (podcasts), photos, charts and infographics etc. Think of it as your own media channel – your company’s ‘digital heart’.
It’s important, however, that you don’t use the company blog for corporate chest-beating (I suppose you can, but only the board will read it and get excited. No one else will – not even your employees).
It’s not for jargon-filled press releases or blatant product plugs. Instead, a blog should inspire, educate, inform and/or entertain its readers. Unlike most company websites, it should give people a reason to come back time and time again.
Passion to connect
Back to the CEO for a minute. Does the CEO need his or her own blog? No, not necessarily. It depends on whether they’ve got anything to say – a point of view – or a passion to connect with their constituents. And they need to be willing to update it at least eight times per month (and the content needs to come from them – it can’t simply be ghostwritten by the company’s PR person).
I think it’s more important for the company to have a vibrant blog the CEO can regularly contribute to, along with other experts within the organisation, rather than having a CEO-only blog that rarely gets updated.
And, critically, if they don’t contribute to the blog, at the very least the CEO needs to give it their full support – otherwise the project may never properly get off the ground.”
Consultant, blogger, speaker and entrepreneur Trevor Young describes himself as ‘a PR Warrior on the front line of the communications revolution’. Trevor is director of strategy and innovation with public relations firm Edelman Australia; he blogs at prwarrior.com and manages Australian blogging directory and news site bloghub.com.au
Consumers want to do business with credible businesses and credible business owners. Social media can bridge the gap between someone not thinking you and your business are credible to the land of high credibility. Building credibility with your current and prospective customers requires you to become an expert, be the solution to the problems and issues your customers and prospects are having, and to interact with them so that they know there is an expert behind the brand, business, or organization.
Position Yourself as an Expert
Your first step in building credibility on social media networks is to position yourself as an expert in your field. There are a myriad of ways for you to do this. Each day, you can share a tip or piece of advice that is relevant to your audience. When you read a newspaper or industry news article, share to a little tidbit of information and the link to where readers can find more information.
Since you are not always trying to sell your followers something but are, instead, simply trying to share information with them, this is the key to building credibility with both your current and prospective customers.
Resolve their Problems
When you are sharing information, use the problem-solution formula. This formula entails that you state a problem in your status update that your customers are currently experiencing. Then provide the solution or a hint to the solution. Finally, provide a link that goes directly to the page where they can find the product or service, article, blog post, or wherever you want to send them for Read more