Coffee, Flowers and Moxie

Friday is a good day to meet someone for coffee. And by spending a few dollars at a Blacksburg, Virginia, coffee shop, I did a small bit to help the struggling economy.

The person I met — Jim Flowers — is also doing his part to help companies and the wider economy.

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William Randolph Hearst on Social Media

OK, technically, publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst didn’t speak on social media. But wait. Look at this quote:

“If you make a product good enough, even though you live in the depths of the forest the public will make a path to your door, says the philosopher. But if you want the public in sufficient numbers, you better construct a highway.”
–William Randolph Hearst

Construct a highway. Construct a highway.

That’s social media, or, in other words, what is now called inbound marketing. Hearst’s words are as true today as when paper and ink were the media of choice.

How’s your highway coming?

10 Ways to Give Your Business Blog Some Zing

I saw this a week or so ago at MarketingProfs Daily Fix in a post by Michael Rubin. Rubin picked it up from Kami Huyse’s blog. It’s worth sharing.

Business blogs can be difficult to sustain. These 10 approaches can help give your blog a purpose (or several purposes). They also can be a starting point for developing meaningful content.

1. The Insider

An insider’s look at your company or industry.

2. The Culture
Highlight employee experiences and share culture with those outside company walls.

3. The Customer
Focus on customers, including their blogs. Let them write guest posts.

4. The Link
Link to other blogs and build relationships.

5. The Comment
Comment on what’s being said elsewhere.

6. The Trend
Cover trends worth noting.

7. The Crisis
Address crises, or explain why you can’t.

8. The Practical Use

A case study approach. How are folks using your products and services?

9. The Solution
Real solutions for tenacious problems.

10. The Community
Build community with your customers and business partners by participating in social networks.

Next time you’re stuck — whether for a purpose or a solid post — this list can help give your blog some new zing.

Shaking Hands with Handshake 2.0

“What’s your pitch?” asked Anne Clelland, founder and editor of Handshake 2.0, a B2B news and blogging site for companies based in the New River Valley of Virginia.

“I don’t have one,” I admitted. There I was, pitchless in Blacksburg.

Actually, I did have a modest goal. I wanted to meet, in person, the energetic woman behind Handshake 2.0. (Besides running a startup, she does triathlons. That’s energetic.) I also wanted to learn more about what she is doing, and why.

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My Blogging Success Story: ARMCHAIR GOLF BLOG

Today I’m featured at Handshake 2.0.

Entrepreneur and editor Anne Clelland asked me to contribute a piece on how I created one of the top independent golf blogs on the Web. Her guidelines included keeping it to 300 words.

Not that I’m long-winded, but writing it short was a challenge, especially when I recalled my three-year journey and all the fun surprises along the way.

Short can be sweet, though, and something I myself advocate as an advertising copywriter.