A core element of inbound marketing is a content-rich, industry-focused association blog. Your blog becomes your content engine and regular posts its fuel. But the blog posts must help members and prospects solve day-to-day challenges, not shamelessly promote the association and its many activities.
Done well, your blog becomes a key industry resource and your blog notification email becomes your email newsletter. Say what?
Here’s how it works. When an individual subscribes to your blog they select a notification period (i.e. how often they would like to receive alerts about new blog posts). Typical notification periods are Instant, Daily, Weekly, and Monthly. See the Subscribe Now image below.
If you select “Instant” you’ll receive an email summary as soon as a blog post is published. This means your email newsletter is spontaneous and timely. If you select daily you’ll get a roundup of yesterday’s posts while weekly includes a longer email newsletter with all posts from the last seven days. Pretty straightforward, right?
The subscriber is then sent a summary email with the latest posts and your email newsletter is born. See below.
Why is this important?
- Your association moves away from outdated, outbound marketing (spray and pray email marketing). Only the people who ask for your content receive it. I know this may seem scary but why send people information they don’t want and didn’t ask for?
- Subscribers get content as often as they want it, on their terms, not yours. They raise their hand when they subscribe and ask for information but it’s their decision how often they’ll receive it.
- Association staff is encouraged to create content that solves problems and drives blog subscriptions.
- “Always Be Subscribing,” or ABS, becomes a primary marketing strategy. Your marketing team is driven to increase subscriptions and subscribers becomes a Key Performance Indicator (KPI). Some strategies include placing forms, banner ads, slide-in and popup CTAs on multiple web properties all with the goal of driving subscribers.
- More blog subscribers means more content consumption. More content consumption reinforces the association as a thought leader that provides valuable, problem-solving information to its members and prospects.
- Your marketing team no longer labors over email newsletters since email summaries are sent automatically from your blog platform to all subscribers. This saves time and money.
So what do you think? Does this make sense? Can you see where this might work for your association?