To Blog or Not To Blog?

As a marketer, the challenge to obtain the right mix of a company’s Integrated Marketing Communication (IMC) always exists.

I always tell my clients, “Blog, blog and then blog some more.” Why? Because blogging clearly has some added bonuses which other strategies may not.

Let’s take a look at three of my customers’ blogs and analyze them accordingly to determine whether they are successful and serving a purpose to achieve the all around growth for which each client is aiming.

The Traffic Ticket Office:

As per the website, “The Traffic Ticket Office is one of Miami’s top law firms. Our lawyers handle all types of traffic ticket violations, including hit and run, reckless driving and highway racing.“ The law firm specializes in helping individuals with their traffic tickets.

The Traffic Ticket Office’s (TTO) blog is semi-professional in nature. It’s not professional because we don’t post to it daily. My company is hired by TTO to maintain their blog. We post to this blog between 1 and 2 times per week.

The purpose of the blog is to inform the public of the disadvantages which may occur when attempting to fight a ticket on one’s own or even worse, electing to pay the ticket as opposed to hiring the firm. As per this week’s lecture, “Timely and relevant information is shared with customers.”

 

They are unique in that this is one of the few law firms in town which actually post regularly on the subject. They have a few competitors, but only one or two other firms regularly post to a blog or social media pages.

By its name alone, Traffic Ticket Office, the user understands this company has something to do with traffic tickets. Their name reflects their brand and what they do.

The website is mobile-ready. So, what usually happens is that a recipient of a traffic ticket violation will perform a mobile search for any of the top key words associated with this business at the moment the ticket is issued. Upon performing such a search, TTO consistently ranks within the top 3 positions on a Google search for that keyword. There is no doubt the regular blog activity “helps with SEO,” efforts as per this week’s lecture. There are links within the site taking the use to old posts, other categories on the blog, in addition to a “Let us Review Your Case,” contact form, making it easy for the user to be contacted by the firm.

In addition, the social icons are listed clearly on the left side bar of the blog, actually, throughout the entire website. Velocity Social Media posts daily to TTO’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

 

The TTO blog is successful in some respects yet could improve in others. New posts are placed 1-2 times per week. Social media content is added daily as the social sites are connected. All content added to the blog is original, there is nothing reposted from anywhere else. Moreover, the keywords are repeated regularly so as to generate activity from search engines. We could improve by allowing guest bloggers in different capacities and also by perhaps adding a “Reviews” link where clients could successfully add testimonials. Finally, the blog has longevity, it has been active for several years, since 2012, when we began working on their behalf.

While the social icons are listed clearly on the left side bar, a “share” button is missing where a potential user or client could share a valuable blog post with his/her connections, hence, extending the reach of the original post. It has been challenging to obtain comments from readers. The primary focus has been for SEO purposes. Images could also be inserted which would apply to that particular post. As per this week’s lecture, images are helpful in blog posts.

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There are no advertisers on the page so far.   However, because of this week’s lecture, we will actively work on providing content which will attract advertisers to the site.

Mario’s Home News:

Mario’s Home News is a brand new blog just launched this past December. Mario’s Home News blog is part of the larger mother company of Strock & Tanner Mortgage or STMC Loans.

STC Loans specializes in all aspects of residential and commercial real estate loans, including reverse mortgages, which have become a popular retirement tool for individuals above 62.

Though a brand new and recent site, the blog is semi-professional. Again, Velocity Social Media posts twice weekly to this blog. The purpose of the blog is to inform the public of all news related to the mortgage industry. It’s not limited to where interest rates may be. The entire real estate environment affecting the nation and particularly, Florida, is focused upon.

A differentiating feature of Mario’s Home News and their overall business separating them from their competition is that they deal with reverse mortgages for the elderly population and, for the younger, working population, they offer loans which cater to the self employed, who may at times, have difficulty obtaining traditional financing in today’s competitive environment. Here is an example of such two posts:

Reverse Mortgage:

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Self-employed Loans:

Screen Shot 2016-02-07 at 8.55.51 PMIn the blog name, Mario’s Home News, the reader can associate the blog name with the overall identity of the brand vis a vis offering a service or news on the industry of homes and real estate in general.

The blog’s purpose is also to help in SEO efforts for the main company, stcloans.com. Since it’s such a new site, SEO doesn’t rank high for this blog. However, when the user places mortgage-related keywords in the search bar, stcloans.com does appear on page 1 of Google search results. There are links to the main websites, as evidenced below:

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The blog is an additional strategy to stcloans.com site overall IMC approach, together with the social media and SEO efforts.

Blog content is shared onto the Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages. The social icons are listed on the blog. Velocity Social Media posts daily to the STC Loans main social media pages.

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The blog will be more successful as time passes. We will invite guest bloggers. A sharing button will be added immediately so that users may share this content onto their own pages, extending the reach of the post. We will include image in future posts so that the images help the overall effect of the post.

There are no advertisers. We will reach out to the banking and credit institutions with which Mario’s Home News teams so that we may obtain potential advertising for them, in order to advertise.

DLD Lawyers:

DLD Lawyers is another client of Velocity Social Media. However, we do not add to the DLD Lawyers blog due to the very intricate and sensitive nature of the type of law practiced by DLD Lawyers.

Though again, a semi-professional blog, like the other two featured above, the DLD Lawyers blog is not posted to regularly. They offer three types of blogs for different practice areas as evidenced by the below image.Screen Shot 2016-02-07 at 4.29.36 PM.png

The purpose of the various blogs is to inform the public of different types of legal cases surfacing in the country, which may be an area of practice where DLD Lawyers may help a potential plaintiff.

Their uniqueness stands in that DLD Lawyers is actually an insurance defense law firm which occasionally also helps defendants against larger companies. They have been known to help the “little guy” (and be successful at this) when no one else would listen.

This is a Florida-based law firm with offices from West Palm Beach to Miami. They are in the process of opening an office in Texas as well. Their brand is known locally by their unique logo and the orange surrounding the white. The brand is not reflected in their blog postings. Locally, amongst the legal community, DLD Lawyer is highly respected with one of the largest privately held, local legal teams, not owned by a larger New York, Boston or other large city top legal firm.

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Each individual blog post is written by either a partner or associate. These posts include great content useful for either the company or person who will hire such a firm. They use keywords to help them get found online. Velocity Social Media posts regularly to their Facebook and LinkedIn pages. An RSS feed is placed on the right, generating additional content for users to read regarding latest legal news. Additional external links are also placed on the website in the blog section which also lead the user to additional content relevant to blog posts.

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The blog could be more successful if posted to on a more regular basis. The blog will be more successful as time passes. We will invite guest bloggers, mainly, attorneys who may collaborate with DLD Lawyers on cases. We cannot add a testimonials page due to the dual nature of the firm’s business model betw

DLD Lawyers needs to post more regularly to their blog. They could add a share button in addition to their social media icons so that readers may share the content and thus extend the reach of the post. The three different blogs could be merged into one overall blog. Each different practice area post could then just reflect on one blog page with an appropriate title indicating the particular practice area as opposed to a different blog for each practice area.

There are no advertisers. Due to the nature of their dual business, however, insurance companies are not necessary loved and would be the only type of business which could advertise to the public. It will be challenging to have an insurance company advertise onto their site, unlike the other above two examples which deal more so with the public and can therefore, attract them with interesting ads.

 

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