Corporate blogs have many unique purposes. They’re more than just a way to show your customers that you’re hip, and should be used accordingly. A successful business blog can and should reach out to current and potential customers in a way that you cannot do any other way.
Blogs allow you to:
• Keep a running dialog between the company and consumers
• Publish announcements quickly and easily
• Reach consumers via RSS, blog readers, and email without any hassle
• Interact with consumers who want that interaction without annoying others
• Ask for feedback on certain aspects of the business
The last two things on that last, in my opinion, are the most important. Corporate blogs that are treated as a one way street where announcements are made and deals are offered without any real interaction are missing the big picture, by denying those customers who want to share the opportunity.
A blog should become a vibrant community, with give and take on both ends. A vibrant community first requires that you involve readers in some way. Once they’re involved, they’re more likely to come back for more at a later time, and others will be more likely to add their own feedback.
So how do you get that involvement? Ask for it.
It can be as simple as leaving posts open-ended. Ask the opinion of the readers. Ask them to leave that opinion in the comments below a post and then when you get it, join in the conversation. A post is not done when it’s published. The writer, or business, should be active in the comments section, creating a real dialogue with the readers.
Use comments to answer questions, ask questions, build on the topic at hand. When readers see this type of interaction, they’ll know that you’re a company that actually listens and participates in the daily lives of your customers. You humanize yourself, and become more trustworthy.
Tweetadder is also a great tool for building up your twitter followers and potential customers.
You can use polls to accomplish the same thing. Or you can base a business decision on feedback from end users, such as the name of a new product or its features. Sometimes the best ideas can come from outside of the company.
Running a business blog can be a fun and rewarding venture, and you should treat it as such.
I agree with Steve, blog commenting should be utilized way more often. It’s truly an open forum for discussion and companies could learn so much about their customers if they actually paid attention to what they’re saying/writing.
If you actively engage with your customers, they will see that you care and want to improve their experience. Simply asking for feedback will go a long way in peoples’ minds because everyone likes sharing their opinion.
Hopefully more businesses will begin to adopt these practices. It’s only to their benefit!
if you said social media and email to interact with customer, i will said yes.
If you said about blog. Then i have to think it again.
Why i say so ?
Very less of blogger only active to reply our comment and most of the blogger do scare to accept comment other than thank or nice post those kind on comments only.
So i do not see much blog that do interact with their reader.
With the rise of tweeting and Facebook wall posts, it seems many people have gotten away from blog commenting and using blogs as a way to stay connected with current and prospective customers. That’s a shame, because blogs still offer one of the most powerful ways to engage your customers and client base and keep them coming back for more.
I agree – a real person will connect with customers/readers much better than a seemingly automated system. Great info!