Monday, July 28, 2008

Corporate Blogging

I caught up with the organizer of the Corporate Blogging seminar held at the Asian Institute of Management. In this video Regnard Raquedan talks about the reason why he came up with this project, what corporate blogging is all about, who it is relevant for and what it brings for business.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Some Insights about Blog Marketing

I have been involved in the largest parties and events so far in the Philippine blogosphere and these include the following:

Philippine Blog Awards (Year 1, I was a host), 150+ attendees
iBlog3 and iBlog4 (as a speaker), over 300+ attendees
Taste Asia 1 and 2, over 200+ and over 450+ attendees respectively Party for Bloggers, over 100+ attendees
Buhay Coke Party for Bloggers, over 300+ attendees
Ponds Event for Bloggers, over 100+ attendees

I've attended and participated in all these events as a blogger, but there is much insight that could be generated from these activities as a marketer. I've been asked countless of times by ad agencies, PR agencies, brand and product managers etc. to share my thoughts about blog marketing and I realized a lot of things as I was doing the IMMAP courses for search engine marketing and blog marketing.

What is blog marketing for?

If you want to try out new media marketing there are two important things: (1) content and (2) search. Consumers go online and do a search to find more information about a company's products/services. This is inherent in the buying process and with prices skyrocketing then people will surely try to find more information and reviews about a product. That's where blog marketing comes in.


When a company tries its hand in blog marketing it should have a sound strategy for it. They could do it on their own by creating their own blog or they could just probably hold events and invite bloggers. One thing that's sincerely lacking though is the follow-up strategy after holding these events. I have yet to see a company who at the very least compiles write-ups about the events they've held and only a few bother to leave thank you's for those who attended.

So before you spend your budget on a blog marketing spree here are some things that you should think about:

1. Holding huge parties/events for bloggers is great, but is your product something that everyone uses (i.e. Coke) or is it best to just invite a specific niche of bloggers?

2. Bloggers also experience what you call "blogger fatigue". Sometimes its best to reach out to a specific niche since the bloggers will be more interested to make a post.

3. Must be our shy-Pinoy culture but a lot of bloggers are still wary to join contests. If you want to do a contest it's not enough to have an announcement through blogs, you have to follow-up, follow-up and follow-up and target key people who can help in spreading the word.

4. If you're going to hold an event for bloggers, it's important to make them experience your product/service. Holding a mall-type show just doesn't work. And get hosts who know what they are talking about.

5. Have someone in your company who understands how the community works or maybe at least somebody who is willing to learn.

And don't forget to plan on what you're going to do about that database you've gathered after the event. That's another post altogether, well maybe soon.

Happy weekend!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Blogging as a Marketing Tool

More and more companies in the Philippines have been paying attention to bloggers. I'd say there are probably at least 3 events every week where bloggers are invited. It could be in the form of an activity with a handful of bloggers to really huge parties attended by hundreds of bloggers. Bloggers have also been receiving samples through mail and requests for reviews.

It's important for companies to be found online especially when people do searches about their products or services. Content is key here. Aside from a company's website, internet users also seek other types of information, especially reviews and testimonials which they find largely through blogs or review sites.

That's the reason why companies have been reaching out to bloggers and inviting them to their events. It's online word-of-mouth at work.

The past few weeks several big brands have been actively pursuing bloggers and these include the following:

1. Coca-cola recently held a "Buhay Coke ng Bloggers" party at the Taste Asia (Mall of Asia) and have announced a video blog contest.

2. Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf sponsored a workshop on writing, making videos and photography last week and have extended the deadline of their contest.

3. Ponds (Unilever) is holding a party for bloggers on July 4, 2008, Friday at the Taste Asia (beside SM Hypermarket) at the Mall of Asia and will also be launching a contest of their own.

The Universal McCann study did say after all that 65.8% of active internet users in the Philippines read blogs.