No matter what reason you have for blogging, your blog IS a selling tool. You are creating content that’s a selling tool for….something. The key is to make sure you are selling what your customers want to buy.
Most companies create blog content that directly promotes its products, because that’s what it wants to sell. But for the most part, the content we WANT to see is content that shows us how the product will fit into our lives, or solve a problem for us.
Case in point, earlier this year I started doing research looking for a new carryon. The one I had provided very basic functionality, and was starting to break down. Additionally, if I attended an event for more than 2 days, it was tough to pack everything I’d need in it, especially considering any materials/books/swag I might pick up during the trip that I’d like to bring back home.
So while I was technically looking for a new carryon, what I really wanted was a product that would make the travel experience easier for me. Then I found this post from Chris where he reviewed the Eagle Creek Tarmac 22 carryon. I bought it recently and I. Am. In. Love. The bag does exactly what I need it to do, it perfectly organizes all the clothes I’d need for any trip, and as a result, now makes it possible to pack clothing for at least 2-3 additional days over my previous carryon. For a recent business trip to Atlanta I packed a full wardrobe for 3 days plus a sports coat and jacket, and had room for at least 2 more days worth of clothing. And that’s without using the extender, which gives you 15% more room.
But notice that this content was created by an Eagle Creek customer (Chris), and the FOCUS of the content was on how the bag helped him as a busy traveler. That was a big selling point for me, because Chris does more traveling than I do, so I knew if it worked for him, that it would probably work for me. Chris wasn’t trying to sell the product literally, he was trying to sell us on why the product worked for him. And as such, he was sharing his experiences with us, in the hope that it might help us as well if we are considering a new carryon.
And it’s interesting that apparently Eagle Creek does NOT have a blog. So I had to get ‘sold’ on the Eagle Creek Tarmac 22 by Chris, not the company. Which approach do you think would do a better job of selling this product:
1 – Explaining the product itself, how it’s constructed, the materials used, and any guarantees it has.
2 – Explaining how this product will help a busy traveler better stay organized and save time and effort.
I lean toward #2, but there is some importance in #1. I think the problem is, most companies understand their product better than they do how their customers will USE their product.
IMO if you want to use your blog as an effective selling tool, sell me how the WHY and HOW I use your product, and create content around that. Look at the above picture, do I want you to sell me on why I should buy your basketball, or do I want you to sell you on how you can make me a better basketball player?
Your blog IS a selling tool. The key is to create content that promotes the product by being customer-centric, not product-centric.