What is the Blogosphere?
The Blogosphere is the interconnected network of blogs. According to Wikipedia a blog is “a … site … published on the World Wide Web and consisting of … posts typically displayed in reverse chronological order.”
Nearly all digital published content can be considered a blog: from the New York Times to an Iowan mom writing about her experiences raising her three children.
The Internet has made both now equally accessible: A few keystrokes and you are there. How can you harness the various powers of the blogosphere for your business?
1. The Power of Google and Search Engine Optimization
The majority of Google’s organic search results are blogs, which can direct traffic from specific search results to your site. By having bloggers create sponsored stories referencing your business, which are indexed and found through search engines, customers that might be looking for your product but not know what exactly to search for can be redirected back to you.
2. The Power of Social Media and Real Time Web
Blogs are an extension of the social web spread throughout the Internet. In fact, many social media posts reference a long form piece of content, while the actual sites themselves are used for secondary content, like retweets, comments, and discussion. Used in tandem with social, the blogosphere can create entries in trending social media by the coordinated effort of hashtags and other links, enabling your product to be discovered.
3. The Power of the Empowered Individual Influencer
The blogosphere has democratized writers allowing them to reach their niche audience that is rabid for their content. The power of these influencers can be seen with YouTube stars, Twitter accounts turning into television shows, and powerful crowd funding campaigns that demolish their set goals. Through sites as niche as Fresh Traveler (eco-friendly travel), Coffee Cake and Cardio (food and fitness), and Len Penzo dot com (off beat personal finance) the blogosphere has something for everyone. Fans can subscribe to posts, be notified via email, or follow via social media to ensure that nothing is missed. Through sponsored stories, powerful niche influencers can let you piggyback on their reputation to reach your target market.
4. The Power of Content and Content Distribution
The rise of content distribution widgets like Outbrain, Taboola, and nRelate, and white labeled solutions like AdsNative has provided a way to measure non purchase actions that push customers closer to the transaction. Powerful content drives the customer to the next step, and with the new elongated sales funnel, bloggers act as a bridge between educational corporate content and consumer ratings and reviews. The blogger’s stories, thus, can save distracted customers from making another click, which might not be the click toward your site.
5. The Power of Big Data
The term big data has come to light because of the Internet’s ability to reach your target market quickly and efficiently, while easily collecting decision-making information. By collecting data to measure the engagement of your audience in terms of reading speed, completion amount and overall immersion with your story, you can get the wisdom of your customer’s actions to help you figure out which story resonates best with them. Sponsored stories in the blogosphere not only provide you with a distribution mechanism but also a content creation method that will eliminate any possible biases from irrelevant content. That’s winning online marketing!
6. The Power of Giving
This sixth reason is a counterintuitive one that should surprise you (yes we only promised you five, surprise!) In today’s increasingly fragmented market, companies need to give more than ever. Those that give more receive more. How can this be? Before selling your product to your customer, demonstrate your ability to solve their problems, even if it seemingly is counterintuitive. Hulu pointed users to their competitor’s sites in order to fulfill their queries for content they may not have owned, yet when the time came they earned the reputation as TV on the Internet. Have bloggers create sponsored stories about how they use your products to solve their own problems rather than rattle off features and benefits. Not only will these articles help with your visibility on search (#1), you will begin to build a social following and brand name that sticks in people’s minds. When the time comes, your brand will be top of mind or at least the blogger’s story will be at the top of search.
While all of these tips sound great, great software tools and marketplaces are needed to execute them. One tool that can help you is Cooperatize: a marketplace and software platform that connects you with thousands of bloggers that can create compliant, scalable, well written, and analytics driven sponsored content within five mouse clicks about your brand.
We would love your feedback, good or bad! This is a guest post written by Roger Wu, cofounder of the native advertising and storytelling platform Cooperatize.com. Get in touch with him via Twitter and LinkedIn.