What comes to mind when you think of a blogger? If an image of a techie posting thoughts from his basement comes to mind, your imagination deceives you. In today’s digital world, blogging can be a powerful marketing tool if done correctly. A blog is a combination of search engine optimization, social media, and a news engine all wrapped into one.
Here are four blogs to check out that will give you some guidance in launching your own blog:
YMCA Calgary posts on its blog multiple times per day. These frequent updates range from new classes and events to cancellations, drop-in schedules, and event recaps with pictures. Well-organized categories make it easy for readers to find events by facility or age group. Finally, Calgary offers good calls to action at the end of articles to point people to program descriptions, membership rates, and more.
Aspen posts mostly about upcoming events on its WordPress blog. Also, Aspen’s blog has covered recreation program announcements and deals on membership passes. At the top of the page, Aspen has an online registration button. By driving traffic to the blog, the parks and recreation department can make announcements and point people directly to online registration.
Montgomery (Alabama) Parks and Recreation has recent posts about July 4th fireworks, ceremonies, movie schedules, and concerts. In the right-hand column, Montgomery has three great call-to-action boxes: one to book a lodge, room, or shelter; a second to view an online city map; and a third to view the calendar.
Santa Barbara’s blog is hosted on Blogger. The blog has well-organized topics that people can click to quickly find what they are looking for. Santa Barbara includes a link to online registration and also has a weather widget that automatically updates. The design and content is well done, but the frequency of posts is low. With only one post in 2012, this blog would benefit from more updates.
These blogs are good starting points if you are considering launching your own. Here are some suggestions to get you started:
- Use WordPress or Tumblr
- Host the blog on your website: website.com/blog/ or blog.website.com
- Post your articles to your social networks
- Post as frequently as possible
- Include a call to action in each post – get people to subscribe, register, view, or learn more
Do you have a blog? Share it below.