dustry also does not engage in marketing ROI, we doubt
many have evaluated the ROI difference between an online
event and in-person training.
Natural and organic products companies ranked blogging in the middle of used tactics, but third to last in effectiveness. Remarkably, in other industries, blogging is
consistently regarded as one of the most effective of the inbound marketing tactics. Blogging takes time and effort,
however, and it requires consistency and interesting content
if you want to succeed. Those that do blog in this industry
do so sporadically, and don’t put much emphasis on it. This
is a lost opportunity, since creating content is going to be
more and more important. According to the Custom Content Council, 73 percent of consumers prefer to get information from a company in the form of articles over an
advertisement. In online searches, search engines favor
fresh, specific content, and blogs often perform well.
The only offline tactic that landed in the bottom five is
sponsorships. While the consensus among the marketing de-
cision makers is that sponsorships are not as effective as
other methods, it’s not for lack of trying. Almost 40 percent
of midsize and large natural companies sponsor something,
though more by way of a donation than a tactic that will
drive sales. Those that connect their cause marketing di-
rectly with their company values and promote it through
their website, product labels and other marketing find spon-
sorships to be more effective in driving sales.
When combined, all of the social media tactics (
Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and blogging) make up a large
amount of the marketing efforts of natural products companies, but for many companies the impact is minimal. For example, the average number of Facebook followers for a
natural products company is 1,898, and the average number
of Twitter followers is 1,269. What makes these numbers
even less significant is the fact that the real metric that
counts is the level of engagement. This is measured by the
percentage of your followers who visit your company Facebook page on average each month, and if you get 1 percent,
you are doing well. At 1 percent, that would mean the average natural products Facebook company page is engaging
with 19 people. While the natural products industry has entered the social media waters enthusiastically, most marketers have a long way to go before they make it truly
effective. This doesn’t mean you should abandon these ef-
If there was ever an industry ripe for blogging, it has to be the organic
and natural products industry. There are countless stories behind the products, and each is often tied to a larger cause, such as sustainability, fair
trade, organic agriculture, holistic healing, environmental responsibility,
global warming and locally grown. While blogging can be very effective, few
organic companies do it regularly.
To make it easier, here are five tips to start and maintain an effective blog:
1. Write to your audience. Blogs are not just about you and your company.
They are about communicating to your customers. Make a list of what
your audience is interested in and from that list figure out what topics
you feel most comfortable talking about. You now have the start of an
2. Create an editorial calendar. From your list plot out a timetable for when
the blog posts should be written, and by whom. This’ll provide deadlines.
Without deadlines, you will have no posts. Make sure when you assign
your blog posts that you get buy-in from your writers and have it in writing. To avoid scrambling, plot out your editorial calendar for about three
months, and revisit it every month.
3. Keywords. Part of the reason you blog is to help your website’s search
engine optimization (SEO). You should confer with those who are in
charge of your SEO and determine the most important keyword phrases.
Don’t go for broad terms like “organic.” Instead, try to figure those keywords that someone might use in Google when looking for a product like
yours. Select up to 20, then make sure your blog post headline and first
couple of paragraphs include at least one of these.
4. Style and length. Blogs are not corporate-speak. Nor are they brochures
that need approval from everyone in the company. The style of the blog
should reflect the combined personality of the writer and the company.
What this means is that whomever you choose to write your blogs, you
should trust her. You may want someone to proof what she writes, but
don’t put it through the writing gantlet. Too many blog posts die in a
CEO’s mailbox. And as for length, you can write it as long as you want,
but remember, people on the web have short attention spans. The ideal
length is between 400–800 words. You can’t make much of a point in
200 words (unless it’s a visually oriented blog), and over 800, it had
better be riveting.
5. Images and multimedia matter. If you have beautiful pictures of your
fields or emotionally powerful pictures of who you are helping, you now
have a great place to feature them. Plus, images and videos on blogs not
only attract the reader, but they also break up the text, making for a
more enjoyable reading experience. Furthermore, you can add an “alt
tag” into the images, which is great for search. The alt tag is the written
meta-text attached to an image to help the search engines identify what
the picture is. This is important since Google, Yahoo! and Bing are not
yet able to identify images by themselves. So does the alt tag really matter? You’d be surprised at how many people search in the images section of Google, and if they stumble on your scintillating blog, you may
have attracted a new customer.
So start the process. Kick-start or reinvigorate your blog today, and
within several months you’ll be pleasantly surprised how much better you’re
communicating with your target audience and how much better your keywords are ranking on Google.
Blogging Natural and Organic Products— 5 Easy Ways to Get Started