October 22, 2014

How to Leverage Big Brands for Your Small Business

No man is an island, and no small business is either. As small business owners, we know that success requires reaching out to others. You can’t do it all on your own. At least… you can’t do it all on your own and be anywhere near sane by the end of the quarter.

internet chatter

When I say “reaching out to others,” I don’t just mean networking. What I’m really referring to is leveraging the big brands and power players in your industry through your company blog. By leveraging these brands, you’ll be able to boost your own reputation and solidify those leads you’re already working on.

A few pointers:

When You Talk the Talk, You Will Walk the Walk

When your blog audience sees you cover well-known, credible businesses, they automatically begin to view you in the same light. Check out how the Matchstic blog weighs in with opinions on what’s happening in the world of big business branding.

They’re a mid-size branding agency, but they regularly associate themselves with big brands through their blogs. Case in point: this recent post on Arby’s.

Talk the big brand talk, and your readers will naturally assume you walk the big brand walk.

Turn An Enormous Marketing Concept into a Bite Sized Point

Big brands make great examples in your blog posts. Because these brands are already well known, you don’t have to waste your words trying to convince readers that your point is legitimate.

In the previous example, Matchstic doesn’t have to waste time talking about the Arby’s company by explaining what they do and where they came from. Everyone already knows Arby’s is a legitimate business.

It’s easy for the blogger to jump right in to the meat of the story (no pun intended), and create a bite-sized takeaway. Okay, that pun was intentional.

Get Ready for the Re-Tweets

Big brands will help your small business blog get more social media attention. Which blog post is likely to get more shares?

  • “4 Lessons I Learned About Selling Clothes Online”

or

  • “4 Lessons From Target About Selling Clothes Online”

The second title, of course. I don’t know who you are; I know who Target is. That’s the blog post I’m going to read, and it’s the post I’m going to share.

However, spammers and spam robots think the same way. So, when you do share an article that drops big brand names, prepare for the fake Twitter followers and spammy comments. It’s not a big deal, but you should be aware.

Of course, you might even make contact with the company you mention. If you wrote a blog post about Target, you would definitely want to include an @Target when you tweet the article.

Don’t Be General. Get Specific.

This is always a good rule of thumb for blogging. However, it’s especially important when you’re talking about big businesses. Because you’re writing about a company that has tons of available information and examples, you have no excuse for not using it.

If you need the nitty-gritty financial info for your blog post/case study, head over to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission where EDGAR will become your friend. The more details you have, the stronger your content will be.

Don’t Take Competition Too Seriously

I know, I know, it’s business. But, really… don’t go out of your way to avoid mentioning a big brand or competitor if they have some content that can help you boost your own company’s reputation.

So, you sell jewelry and Tiffany’s sells jewelry? Everyone in the world knows about Tiffany’s. Not many people know about you. By linking to a Tiffany’s product page or some valuable piece of content the company’s written, you aren’t hurting yourself. If anything, you’re demonstrating to your readers that you care about providing valuable information more than anything else.

If You Can’t Say Something Nice…

Don’t say anything at all. There’s nothing wrong with blogging about what not to do. However, try to avoid picking out a specific company as your example. You never know what big brand competitor might be interested in buying your company in a couple of years.

Even if you have no plans of selling, picking on another company:

(a) Looks bad.

(b) Could come back to bite you.

There’s no telling what kind of distribution your post could end up getting.

How do you leverage big brands in your small business blog?

Internet Chatter Photo via Shutterstock

3 Comments ▼

Amie Marse


Amie Marse Amie Marse is the founder of Content Equals Money, a small content generation firm based in Lexington, KY. She’s been a passionate freelance writer turned business owner for over 7 years. Her philosophy is that the essentials of content marketing do not change from the small business to the Fortune 500 level, and that creativity trumps budget every time.

3 Reactions

  1. Fantastic post Amie. I use this very same strategy in my niche. I run an internet marketing blog centered around traffic generation. I regularly reference other “big name” influencers in my posts and because of this I’ve gain a following and recognition rather quickly – even from several of the influencers that I mention in my posts.

    I used to shy away from mentioning other bloggers who were more well know that I but I now do it all the time and it’s definitely become vital to the growth of my business.

    Thanks for sharing this informative post with the community. I appreciate it!

    Ti

  2. That is a really nice idea. I used to think that content must just be too good to pass out when really a mere brand mention may be all it takes to get your post to the top. I might use this idea for my company then I’ll tell you how it goes.

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