Blog Strategy: Think Inside the TV
Portent Staff Aug 14 2014
I have a confession: I love TV. When I was a dirty-kneed seven-year-old sitting on our brown carpet, I watched the A-Team and MacGyver and Quantum Leap. I loved the consistency of these shows, how I already had an idea what the premise was going into it, and I loved to be surprised by the details and the eventual victory by the good guys. It didn’t matter if I had watched the episode previous to this one. Each one contained its own plot and character development. I came back to these shows again and again, knowing I would enjoy the experience.
So this is my suggestion to all you marketers and bloggers out there: Let’s make every blog post a new episode of your own written TV show. Stop using your blog as an SEO tactic, and start making it a studio for your brand. If someone lands on a blog post from SERPS, great! When they are done with that blog post and look around the blog, the other posts should be similar enough for the reader to immediately get a feel for your voice and your purpose.
The layout of each post should be like an episode of a show, written with a problem to overcome, some entertainment, and heck, maybe even some character development. People will come back to that, I promise you. We’re pretty loyal to our TV shows. Make them come back to your blog again and again, first for the entertainment, then for the information, and lastly for your brand.
How do you make your blog into a written sitcom? That’s easy. You need a certain blend of ingredients that is specific to your brand. The main ingredients to any great television show are interesting characters, a problem, and a solution. The rest falls into place.
Cast of characters
Your characters should mirror both your target market and your brand. So if you sell high-end car parts for luxury and super sport cars, you want a mechanic and a car collector. The car collector is quirky, say he has an unhealthy obsession with Elon Musk and Tony Stark, and he’s a thrill seeker. He races his Ferrari on the track and takes his Lamborghini out on the Autobahn.
The mechanic is more obsessive over the collector’s cars, and wants to baby them. It annoys him when the collector gets a scratch on the Ferrari’s paint or spills a few drops of espresso in his Lamborghini. The two men are old friends and rely on each other to make their lives better.
These two characters are relatable to the target market and also to the brand. They’re human and unique enough to engage readers.
But your characters don’t have to be fake. There are plenty of great characters on shows like Top Gear, Autocar and Jay Leno’s Garage. Reel in someone from your company who can truly speak to your target market, and give them (almost) free reign.
Problems and Solutions
Every TV show has a unique problem to solve in every episode, whether it’s the A-Team building a tank out of a forklift in a lumberyard or a mechanic figuring out what that noise is when the collector downshifts his Ferrari. The problems and solutions in your blog are the key to users finding your content online. Answer common questions that your target market may have.
The key here is to keep from being too sales-y. Every blog post should not point to your products. It should offer a solution or resolution to a question, without getting too repetitive. Think Car Talk. All Click and Clack do on their show is answer questions about cars. But the questions are so incredibly varied, and the hosts are so relatable and entertaining, that I could listen to that show for hours on end.
Let your problems and solutions vary widely while your characters stay true to their quirkiness and spunk, and you’ll have a blog that entertains enough for people to come back again and again. Entertainment builds loyalty, and when it comes to your blog, loyalty really pays off.
So remember – build a blog that entertains, teaches, and that connects with your audience. After all, the more a customer relates to your content and feels like you’re speaking to them, the more likely they are to bookmark that blog and keep coming back to it. Speak to their passions and much-needed solutions, and the loyal customers will follow. Ready? …Action!