How Are Blogs And Brands Related?

Advertisements

As we recently discussed, many companies adopt a superficial brand. It sounds good, it uses the right buzzwords and it helps them avoid the heavy lifting of real branding. In many advertising mediums, they can get by with that.

On TV, the radio and in print a sound byte tagline will probably fool most of the people most of the time. In 30 seconds, you are in and out. There’s not enough time for you to trip over yourself. You can toss out words like “customer care” or “quality” and because by the time they register, we’re off to the next ad-you’re safe.

You are not afforded that same luxury on a blog.

A blog is you, all you. 24/7. And it is a running record of your thoughts, opinions, level of expertise and knowledge. Imagine the difference between reading a single print ad versus reading someone’s last 100 posts.

Which one do you think would give you a better sense of that business?

Chris Brown over at Branding & Marketing explores how a blog can be a powerful marketing tool. And she’s right. A significant portion of that power comes from the branding of your company via your blog.

Now here’s the part that matters. Your blog is going to reflect your brand, whether you mean it to or not. While companies can fake their brand in a tagline or slogan, they cannot maintain the falsehood over a long period of time.

So if you haven’t started a blog yet, you will be well served to invest the time necessary to define and understand your brand long before you write your first post. That way, from the very beginning, you can seed your blog with your brand promise.

If you already have a fledgling blog up and aren’t sure of your brand, why not explore it for/with your readers? Sure, that might be a little scary, but can you imagine the loyalty it would breed.

If you have been blogging for a while and have built your readership up, ask yourself what brand messages you are sending. If you can’t articulate your brand, read through your posts with a fresh eye. It is probably there among your best posts. If you do have an established brand, review your blog posts to make sure you’re staying true to that message. Don’t let yourself get too far off center.

Your blog is a reflection of your brand. Whether you recognize it or not. Why not use that to your advantage?

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Comments

  1. Drew,

    Great insights. The beauty of blogs is that they allow a brand to acquire a “personality” – and people want a personal connection.

    Why do I read your blog regularly? It’s not just because of the words, in abstract. It’s because it’s Drew, and I’ve come to like and respect Drew (without even meeting him!).

    Of course, what this also means is that if the people behind the brand are basically snakes, then they definitely shouldn’t blog!

  2. Drew:
    You are so right about the difference between a 30 second commercial and a blog. There is no hiding your personality, it just tends to shine through.

    Thanks for having such a helpful, forward thinking approach!
    Chris

  3. Bill,

    Ha! Good point! For the sake of the broader marketplace, let the snakes blog away!

  4. Steve,

    Exactly. With a blog, the brand becomes 3-D. It evolves before our very eyes and we are either drawn to it or repelled by it.

    And thanks for the compliment. As you know, the respect is quite mutual.

    Drew

  5. Bill,

    That’s one of the beautiful things about blogs. People simply cannot hide their true self. It just sneaks out.

    And it’s usually not explicit. It’s something we sense. And we’re usually dead on.

    Which makes it an excellent way for a company to discover their brand as well. Sometimes they can’t see it until it’s right in front of their face.

    Drew

  6. Chris,

    The difference is that one is manufactured and the other is organic. Which of course is why many companies are still afraid to blog.

    I think they’re not sure what will bubble to the top! Thanks for writing the great post on how to use your blog as a marketing tool. Some excellent ideas there.

    Drew

  7. Drew,

    This is a good reminder that your brand reflects who you really are as a company or an individual. That in mind, I’d prefer, contrary to Steve above, that “snakes” be encouraged to blog. It will expose them to consumers far faster than anything else in the marketplace.

  8. You know what they say:

    “The best way to kill a bad product is with good advertising.” You’ll only fool’em once. If they try it and hate it, they won’t be back.

    Today, a blog might just save us the first purchase. Here’s to blogs.

  9. nesh thompson says

    I would argue that there are similarities in advertising and blogging. Your 30 second advert is intended to tempt potential customers to make a further decision like visiting a store or ringing a number.

    Your blog does the same thing, that initial 30 seconds is served up by your most recent post, if I am not interested in it, I will not read further. By reading more of your posts, if I am persuaded to read on, I am in a fact moving on to a different stage of the sales/marketing process.

    Does that make sense?

  10. Nesh,

    Sure it makes sense. I’m not suggesting they are totally unrelated. There’s just a lot more meat on the bone with a blog, is what I am saying.

    If I want to dive deeper, it is right there for me to do. With an ad, I have to seek it out.

    Drew

  11. Ed,

    Very true. And from the sellers’ POV, it might also save us from a client we don’t really want to have.

    Compatibility goes both ways.

    Drew