No discussion about marketing seems complete with a passing reference to the following infamous and increasingly outdated 5 Ps:
Remember them from Marketing 101?
Odd, that the list doesn’t include Planning, eh? It’s actually the most important P of all and the only one that truly stands the test of time. Well, enough Pontificating.
I’ve been known in seminars to rail about the P’s. But, when talking about marketing a blog, we should at least tip our hats to the Ps to explore their relevance in today’s new digital world.
Oddly, the hardest P to get your hands around in retail is the easiest in blogging – Price. The price of a blog is simple. Zero. It’s free. Thanks Chris Anderson, Google, and everyone except the Wall Street Journal for setting the model that writing is again undervalued. Everyone agrees that it’s all about Content, but oddly it’s the content that is most often Free. Tomes can and are written, on this, but for now let’s just agree that a blog, by definition, is free and move one to the other P’s.
Place in marketing used to mean one of two things depending on your professor or decade in college. For original retail marketers, it was where your goods were displayed or sold. Later on it came to refer to the entire distribution channel and include how you got your goods to market.
Place for blog marketing also has two meanings. Definition one can refer to Platform. Are you blogging on Typepad, WordPress, .mac, or some other platform? What does the platform say about your blog? Does one platform over another help or hinder? As much as I don’t want to get into a platform discussion here, the choice of platform is a consideration and probably one of the first decisions a blogger has to make. The good news is that regardless of platform, noting in blogging is forever. With modern technology, exporting from one platform to another is fairly simple in most cases and is less of a consideration in marketing a blog than in bricks and mortar retail.
In retail, if you’re a high end product, you cannot start out in Kmart and recover to Neimans. In blogging, however, you can start out on blogspot and work your way up very legitimately and without much reader repercussion to Typepad and then WordPress.
Definition 2 can refer to where you Place your blog out on the Internet. Regardless of Platform, to market a blog you have to get it Placed in other arenas. For most that includes a link to another social media site – be it a LinkedIn feed, updated profile, Facebook link, or a Tweet. For aggressive bloggers, it’s all of the above. For a well Placed blog, it then gets re-Placed (or re-Tweeted) throughout the Web.
Place in more traditional marketing has more to do with physical positioning than it does in the blogosphere. In retail, an end-aisle display can make or break a product as drive-by passive traffic can turn a product into an overnight success. A punchy blog can also go from zero to thousands of readers in a night, but not due to placement so much as punchy content and the right followers.
Before we leave Place, one passing thought. Don’t forget to Place your blog in the right directories with the right key words. They’re called Key Words because the key is to be found. Unlike the real world, the virtual world isn’t replete with sign posts, shelf hangers/talkers, door signs or the friendly Walmart greeter to help point they way. You have to be found through the Internet clutter. All the SEO chatter you hear is all about being found, which is the real meaning of Place in today’s digital world.
Two P’s for the price of one blog post. Seems enough for now. Next week, more on the remaining P’s.