BlogHer Gives Lots of Ideas for Marketing
I was at the BlogHer conference in Chicago this past weekend, what a ride. I went hoping to gain a greater understanding of the "financial model," of the blog/social networking movement and to ask some questions about the value of content on the web.
First off I would say the blogosphere is bursting with all kinds of opportunities for marketers, from harnessing a captive audience to utilizing specific communities to execute on word of mouth marketing. Think viral marketing on steroids. Advice, recommendations and reactions travel fast in cyberspace.
I was most impressed by a discussion with Lauren Zalaznick, President of NBC Universal's Women Lifestyle Networks. When I asked about the ethics of the “free” content movement, she said, "Think of it as a new value equation." She went on to say that posting free content on the web is like free advertising for the content creator. While the blog site or web site gets free use of content the writer or photographer gets free exposure. Hmmmm. Sounds like a typical editorial model to me but without the editorial rate.
There were also some great tips from bloggers on how to blog effectively. Many pointers were given. The following were the key highlights. Remember these only apply if you are actively producing a blog.
• Post one blog link (you need to make it new every time you update) on Facebook. If you don’t know how to do this look at the Share This website.
• Post one blog link on another site like Stumble or Digg, you can do this with the Share This tool too.
• Post one link on Twitter to your blog, you can do this with the Share This tool too.
• Clearly define who makes up your social media “community.” Are they art directors, public relations people, fine art curators?
• Respond to 5 members of "your community" on Twitter and 5 members on Facebook. So for example get chummy with art directors, clients and art buyers by contacting them within a “like community.”
• Your Twitter feed is not all about selling your wares directly. Your tweet should be about 80% conversational 20% self-promotional. Authenticity is the thing. Engage with your community with those topics that are universally interesting to your group. Try to avoid looking like you are using your community—instead engage your community.