Seth Godin is a genius. He thinks like I do.
A couple of weeks ago he wrote a blog post encouraging real estate agents to start a local newspaper online. Then he went on to say that anyone in any kind of business could do it. Of course, I’ve been saying the same thing for over a year now.
Seth’s idea is a good one. It’s really a community blog. We’ve got clients that run something similar in their communities. You can too. In fact, there are several ways that you can tap into your local market to gain more influence and to attract more customers. Here are a few ideas for you to ponder:
- Live in a tourist town? Start a blog telling tourists about places they can visit in your local area. Don’t just stick to the well known places. Also share ideas about out of the way places that most people don’t know about. A good example of this is the Gettysburg Pennsylvania Blog. Make sure that your readers know that you sponsor the blog and that you provide a link back to your business site.
- Sponsor a local charity blog. Approach a charity that you support and and ask them if they have a blog. If not, offer to sponsor the blog. Dedicate someone to write the blog daily or ask if the charity has someone who can do it. Either way, you can place your business logo on the blog as the sponsor. If neither your business nor the charity have someone who can write the blog, hire a ghostwriter to write it for you. Just make sure everyone in the community knows that your business sponsors the blog.
- Support a local little league or children’s organization. This is great if you have a child that plays baseball, soccer, or is in Cub Scouts. Check to see if the team has a blog. If not, start one and blog about the games during the season. Link back to your business website as the sponsor of the blog.
- Partner with a professional association in your area. If there are several other businesses in your area that target the same, or complimentary, market, start a joint blog and make sure a link back to your website is included in the sidebar or on the About page. Of course, the other partners will get a link too, but this type of blog shows that there is good will among your peers and you could see additional traffic from it (not to mention an inbound link or two)
- Write an activity blog. Join a local social club that is centered around a certain activity (ie racquetball, chess, Friday night card games, movie watching) and write about the group’s activities. Link back to your site as the sponsor
That’s only 5 ideas. I’m sure I could think of more (and so can you). These types of blog are called indirect marketing blogs. They appeal to a certain audience that might be segmented into your overall market. You build good will with your community by sponsoring these types of blogs and that’s great for PR, plus you never know what kind of business might come your way. On some of these blogs you could even sell advertising that pays for the expense and maintenance of the blog or the ghostwriting fees.Professional Management for Business Blogs