Tag Archives: Blog

Valuable Original Content

Lack Of Value Given In Blog Posts By Companies Is Absolutely Shocking

Blogging was once used exclusively by many people to get their voices heard and to give their 2 cents on any subject, business, product or sports team. Today with the continuous evolution of social media and the Internet, businesses of all sorts have hopped online to start distributing content of their own to either reach out to customers or inform them about the company, product, or industry news. What’s surprising is that 15 years into the new millennium, businesses of all shapes and sizes are still not putting out content that adds value to the consumer, nor does it draw them into buying the product they’re selling.

On numerous occasions I’ve seen company’s blogs either being used as a voice for an individual who works for the company, or they use blogs as a platform to distribute content that would have once been in a magazine that no one ever read. I might be coming across as harsh, but this is business, and without valuable and informative content that draws interest from consumers, there are no sales.

It’s shocking to see content being posted that is completely irrelevant to the current product these companies are selling. One article could have easily been written by an independent blogger, but I highly doubt they would have wasted the time to put out content that wouldn’t drive any sales, views, or subscribers. That’s what is so dangerous about lackluster content from all platforms by these companies. As a consumer, I see no value, and therefore I skim over it and continue scrolling down my Twitter or Facebook timeline.

Most people think it’s just Facebook ads, Google Adwords, or throwing money into some other Internet marketing tool that drives sales. In today’s economy people want something with substance, information they can believe in and trust, that assures them that they are making the right decision. It’s amazing to see that the leaders who oversee the distribution of content by these companies don’t see that. Independent bloggers who are close to the product, the company, or have a passion for the industry the business is in, are more likely to post quality content that brings value, than if these companies found somebody in-house. They may also know more about the product in some cases.

Whether it’s Facebook statuses, tweets, or blog posts, businesses and stores need to start putting out better content. Most are doing a great job, but in some industries there aren’t many who are outshining the competition. It would also be wise for these companies to start following and building some form of a relationship with the bloggers who are in someway driving sales and traffic to their websites. These bloggers have an extensive knowledge of these products, and their reviews and content that go along with that knowledge is invaluable.

Also in the age of social media, blogs and the influence that they have on their followers could lead to sales directly to the company because they’ve built trust. Businesses have a harder time building that trust, whereas content from fellow consumers is easier to believe and sympathize with.

It’s 2015. It’s time to start marketing and distributing content like the year we’re living in.

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Finding Your Niche And Sticking With It Is The Key To Success

Business owners, vloggers, bloggers, and websites all thrive on one thing; being the masters of their niche market. For some, going mainstream and facing the giants of an industry that’s already saturated can work, but unless they bring value to the consumer they’re going to be overlooked. While everyone goes macro, small businesses and individual bloggers must think micro when starting out. Being unique is what gets exposure, and the creativeness and passion behind what these people are trying to accomplish will show much more than those who are subconsciously more concerned about acting like or competing with the big boys.

A niche market is often overlooked by the conglomerates, bigger websites, and blogs, which opens the doors for the individual writer or small business owner. When you find that niche and get a good foothold on it, you must stick with it and grow your following and customer base without changing your identity. Too often after a year or two of success, these small businesses and blogs begin to get overconfident, and reach for consumers or viewers who are not part of the original niche they were marketing to. This eventually leads to loyal customers leaving, and what you’re left with is a blog or small business that is directional-less.

You may be the captain of your ship when it comes to your business or blog, but it’s the followers and customers that steer it. Ultimately it’s them who take your niche market and grow it, not the other way around. When you get that strong loyal group, listen to them and they’ll help you get more exposure. Remember, your decision to enter a niche market has given you the opportunity to grow your business or website into something more, and if you try growing it yourself and go in the wrong direction, you’re going to have many followers and customers, but they won’t be loyal nor profitable in the long run.

Niche marketing can be profitable. If your content or products bring value to the consumer they’ll return, bringing more people with them the next time they visit your store or website. You built a community that was unique and brought like-minded individuals together, and now that community is growing on its own without you forcibly marketing to multiple groups. The niche market you got into has brought in niche consumers, and that’s how you become successful, by naturally building off what you started and what the consumer continued.

Getting Ahead in the Sports Journalism Industry

The Coal Face 2007
jontangerine / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

 

Having been an editor for HardwoodHoudini.com and writer and creator of Bostonbball.com for over three years, I’ve picked up and learned a few things about the sports journalism industry from a blogger’s point of view. In those three years, changes in the way sports news was being distributed really evolved into something more, as Twitter became the best way to report trade rumors, free agency signings, and injury updates. While social media was a godsend for smaller blogs and websites, it did hamper the effectiveness of the individual blogger and diminished his or her chances of being noticed.

For those of you who blog about your favorite team or sport, you’re competing with news outlets, bigger blogs, and the other individual blogger or writer who is following you on Twitter. You’re just one in a million and can easily get lost in the crowd as there will always be someone who can write better than you and post more articles in a 24 hour timespan. The biggest challenge that you face is standing out and getting ahead of your competition. But how can this be accomplished, especially when you’re dealing with hundreds of other bloggers just like you?

Had I known about the power of social media and it’s ability to reach a broader audience, I would have employed a marketing strategy. Yes, marketing isn’t exclusive to business, advertising, and commercials; we constantly market ourselves, our brand, and who we are as a person on a daily basis. So let’s start asking ourselves a few questions. Why am I not standing out or getting noticed? How can I be seen as an experienced professional, one who knows the sport better than any other blogger on the internet, and show news outlets such as Bleacher Report that I’m the real deal?¬†What must I do to make my dreams to become a reality?

Most bloggers stick to what they know, which is writing. While the safe road can lead to bigger and better opportunities, it’s always the ones who innovate and think outside the box who do something special in their lives. What form of sports journalism hasn’t been exploited yet by small blogs? Video content and podcasts.

Think for a second about your favorite sports writer. Being from Boston, writers such as Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe and Steve Bulpett of the Boston Herald come to mind, but they do more than write articles. They appear on radio talk shows and local and national television. So how can you replicate them on a smaller scale? The answer lies within YouTube and podcasts.

Creating a YouTube account and posting a weekly video is enough to attract viewers and readership. Not only hasn’t this been used by many freelance bloggers, but this gives your current reader base an opportunity to see you and understand you more than if they just read your latest article. Appearing in front of a camera and talking about your favorite team or sport isn’t a skill many bloggers in the sports journalism industry have, leaving the door wide open for someone like you.

Start a podcast. This can be your radio show; once again giving you another avenue for attracting potential readers and lifelong followers. Some of the bigger blogs have already ventured out into this sector of social media, but it still hasn’t caught on to the point that you’re competing with hundreds of other individuals and bloggers.

When it comes to sports journalism, don’t be a carbon copy of everyone else. Readers and viewers want someone who is not only unique, but very informative and down to earth. There is no better way to accomplish this than by going the extra mile and posting weekly videos and podcasts. This is the best way to be found, and the more you post on all social media sites, create videos and podcasts, and consistently post on your blog, the higher you’ll be on all the search engines.

Remember, make yourself irreplaceable and valuable. Blog sites and news outlets can always find another person like you, but if you stand out and do what no one else is, you’ll reap the rewards.