Your Blog: Hub of the Great Content Marketing Wheel

content marketingDisclaimer: I’m a sucker for a good analogy. That being said, let’s roll.

We all hear the benefits of blogging touted throughout the blogosphere. Heck, if you haven’t heard any of the so-called benefits, Jeff Bullas has written up 10 of them, any one of which is enough to convince me.

Today, however, I want to focus on one very specific benefit (not on Bullas’ list): A blog serves as the hub of your content marketing wheel.

As the hub of your wheel, all other content marketing efforts radiate out from the blog and shoot back into the blog.

Remember:

• Blog = Hub
• All Other Content Marketing Channels = Spokes

Why the Blog?

The blog is not some almighty, unconquerable, chief element of content marketing. There’s nothing magical about firing up a WordPress account and rattling off 300-word bits of wisdom every three days. That’s not blogging.  Rather, I’m a fan of the blog because of its versatility. Every content channel has its purpose and many of those purposes are ultra-specific.

Instagram, for example, only allows you to share visual content. Sure, you can get creative and integrate promo codes and other types of content, but at the end of the day, it has to be visual. I’m not picking on Instagram. You could say the same of Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and all of the other channels.  My point is that all of these content channels – these spokes – are rather limited.

The Near Limitless Blog

While I hesitate to say that the options for a blog are totally limitless, they’re pretty darn close. When you have a blog, you can focus on a number of things:

• Telling stories.
• Sharing company photos.
• Selling your products.
• Conversing with an audience.
• Sharing great content from others.
• Addressing pain points.
• Showcasing thought leadership.

This list could go on, and on, and on. Of course, doing five hundred different things with your blog would be pretty confusing for your readers. After all, your audience has the right to expect some kind of consistency from you.

What the blog allows you to do is create a hub: One centralized place where all of the various spokes of your content marketing efforts can connect.

Think of your blog as a showcase. While it offers its own original content (which is essential), it also connects the various spokes of your brand (Facebook, Pinterest, FourSquare, etc.).

Does a Blog Have to Be My Hub?

It’s definitely worth mentioning that this is just one theory. Not every company is going to find that a blog is the perfect hub for their content marketing wheel. For some it may be a Facebook page, a Slide Share profile or something else.

The important thing isn’t necessarily that your blog is your hub, but that you have a hub. Organizing your content marketing around one centric platform is crucial for brand uniformity and a successful web presence. At least, that’s my take.

What’s your opinion?

A Man Blogging Photo via Shutterstock

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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.

20 Reactions

  1. Great piece. My blog is my home base for everything I do online. Even when I generate leads from a squeeze page, in my emails I always send out quality content and lead them back to my blog to build deeper relationships with them.

    Ti

    • Amie Marse

      Great :)

      We obviously find our blog is a great hub for us. It allows us the best control and the best traffic. We have great syndication partners and it allows us to have a consistent message whereas we might segment our various social media platforms based on their demographics. As an aside, I think most visitors (in our industry at least) are wary of the auto feed. Everybody knows that you can have your WP blog auto update a ton of platforms. This makes you look a little lazy and you might even offend some people. Chris Brogan’s book “The Impact Equation” talks about this at length. If you are struggling with how to get your content marketing system working to increase your ROI – I highly suggest that read :)

      Thanks for reading!

  2. It is crucial for everyone to have a blog. Is it the hub? Not sure.

    I would prefer people begin to realize the power of video. Video can be embedded in blogs, FB pgs and G+ streams. Video can be tweeted (and now with vine, in 6 second segments). Videos, therefore, needs to be part of the blogging strategy as it shares more easily than a blog on all social platforms.

  3. This is great! I agree with both you and Ti, the blog is home base! TimeClick definitely links back to our blog. That is where we have the most valuable information for our customers, and where we can create those great relationships with them.

  4. Hi
    I certainly agree with wheel and spoke analogy. However, for me the hub is my website as this is where conversion occurs. My blog () is showcased and is my lead spoke (this is where the analogy breaks down as all spokes are not equal. Slideshare is equally important for me.

    There is an argument made by some that a Facebook page can replace a website. This is probably true in some cases. Personally i prefer the Ecosystem analogy because it shows the interdependence of the elements more clearly, but i accept it is not as simple or appealing as a wheel analogy. Thanks
    richard

    • Amie Marse

      Great points :)

      Brian Solis does a great job explaining these different types of systems. I highly encourage anyone out there to pick up his book from last year “Not Business as Usual” which is not his latest (I’m sure that’s a good one too but I haven’t read it yet) for more info on how to do your social media/hub/system stuff. Altimeter Group in general is a great resource for real info on the subject, instead of just random gut feelings people have :)

      As far as replacing your site with FB…I think that’s a terrible idea for a ton of reasons. Last year Copyblogger had a great post about “digital sharecropping” where they explained that situation. Facebook is not your company, so why would you let them dictate the main source of your leads? Especially since FB is all over the place trying to monetize, this is the last social media platform you want to count on to base your operations.

      Thanks for reading!

  5. Kip Marlow

    Amie, a real good article. It puts things in perspective for me.

    Thanks

  6. The blog as the content marketing hub makes complete sense. It allows you to develop your content beyond the space limitations on social networks (though Google+ could be an exception to this), and you can include video, audio, and images. I think it’s also especially important for B2B services that have a long sales cycle; the blog allows businesses to share their expertise and remain top-of-mind in a way that is harder to do simply through status updates.

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