Why We Need Group Geo-Targeted Niche Blogs

Geo-targeted twitter

Click Image to read Twitter for Business: How to Geo Target Twitter for Small Business Local Social Media

Several weeks ago I tweeted about the importance of bloggers becoming active on BizSugar and offering small business advice. One of my regular followers asked WHY is it important.

(I would have linked him here, but alas Twitter search does not go back that far and I can not recall who asked. If you let me know I will link to you.)

Up until now, bloggers have primarily been writing about how to blog, how to use social media, and how to make money online. The most active readers, commentators, and distributors of blog content are other bloggers.

Now is the time for us to take what we learned and
apply that to creating a better world for everyone.

One thing that has become readily apparent over the past several years I’ve been blogging is that blogging is complicated. Only those who either have technical skills or the resources to hire them should install their own blogs. Once the blog is up and running, WordPress (or any other blogging platform) must be kept up to date, plugins need to be managed, and whenever one is updated it can cause technical difficulties with others.

Beyond the blog itself, there is even more to know and do from link building to developing social media best practices to growing communities of readers, followers and collaborators. All of this takes time, knowledge and especially wisdom, but unless you do it all well bloggers are highly unlikely to earn a living wage UNLESS they can reach a specific audience.

Reaching a specific niche geo-targeted
audience is the logical next step for bloggers.

WHY is focusing on growing a geo-targeted niche blog important?

Let me count the reasons:

  1. Because shopping locally is the solution to global economic decline, reducing environmental damage, and creating a better standard of living for all involved.
  2. Shopping locally requires being able to find the best small businesses locally – and they are primarily operating off-line and are not particularly Internet savvy.
  3. Those businesses need to be found soon or they won’t exist, but it is not logical for them to carry the overhead or acquire the expertise needed to have their own blogs.
  4. Bloggers who are interested in sustainable living are interested in and need to find those businesses anyway – so why not offer them your much-needed services and share what you find?
  5. Since you’re going to be sharing those local businesses, it just makes sense to grow a local, niche audience for your blog.
  6. If your [existing or new] blog is heading in that direction and reaching your local, niche audience it is the perfect place for the Web presence of those small businesses to “live”.
  7. You could go it alone, but aren’t we all starting to publish and contribute more guest posts anyway? When a group is involved there can be more content and more promotion so you can grow more efficiently.

IMPORTANT: You need to get involved in BLOG COLLABORATIONS
See Blogging Collaboration Best Practices for details.

I’m going to kick this idea off by adding a BizMeme section here at GrowMap with a Dallas Metro page (Dallas Ft. Worth and surrounding cities, counties and communities).  Within that section I will create pages for specific areas

If you are in the Dallas Metro area
please follow me on Twitter @DallasMetro.

Everyone can assist me in spreading the word. We are going to find out how much reach a geo-targeted Twitter account can provide and see just how viable a business idea being the go-to blogger for your location and niche is.

If you have a blog or business that is related to the entire DFW Metro contact me to discuss collaborating.

Here is the bottom line:

  1. Bloggers need to earn a living – ideally for most from blogging and social media.
  2. Small businesses need to reach their local audience.
  3. If the blogger can reach that audience, it makes sense for related small businesses to have bloggers provide them services from advertising to blog outreach to social media.

Most small businesses do NOT need to install their own blogs. What they need is a presence on ours. If they’re so inclined they could write their own posts, but most of them are more likely to need bloggers to do that for them. They could also use assistance setting up social media accounts and learning to use them.

There is a reason we have learned all that we have learned and have the reach and influence we have. Isn’t it about time we put it to good use?

Twitter for Business: How to Geo Target Twitter
for Small Business Local Social Media #smallbusiness

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Gail Gardner

Small Business Marketing Strategist at GrowMap
Creator and owner of GrowMap.com, Gail is primarily known for mentoring small businesses and encouraging bloggers to join collaborations to share skills and support small business.

Comments

  1. Hello,

    Very good article and it will defiantly work if bloggers understand it and keep implementing. The World Wide Web is now becoming more locally focused, I liked the idea of a geo-targeting, it can also attract local advertisers because it can be more targeted.

  2. Great Tip bro!

  3. Amit Singh says:

    Hi,
    awesome article.This is a great concept to make small businesses known and get promoted. We must implement these thoughts to promote our business.
    Thanks for sharing
    Amit Singh would love you to read ..Top 4 Tips for Successful YouTube MarketingMy Profile

  4. Localised blogs is a great idea to help support local businesses. It is so important to the future for their to be secure local businesses especially in food production. I think finding and posting about local permaculture projects is a great way to help and increase awareness about local foods. Bloggers really have a lot of influence that should be put to good use supporting the local economy and development of the living environment.

  5. This is an interesting idea – the World Wide Web is all about breaking down the local barriers but now it is so big that it is becoming more locally focussed – I would like to see how your experiment pans out…I guess if they don’t have a presence online already you should be able to provide a small local business with a profile on your blog and rank it fairly easily.

  6. Steph from Seo Sydney says:

    Geo-targeting is becoming increasingly important. Google sees it as a way of better returning results and therefore better monetizing its audience. When your blog targets places or talks about different places Google pieces this together and tries to pin down location.

  7. I think the time for geo-targeting is finally here, Gail. Recent stories about Apple and Google secretly tracking their customer’s locations in preparation for geo-targeted marketing indicates that this is where the big players think there is quite a but of money to be made there.

    I hope to be spending more time on my blog this summer talking about the need for small businesses to quit thinking globally and start thinking locally. The pendulum has reached it’s apex on the globalization movement. It’s time to bring it back towards where the bulk of small businesses live, work, & sell.
    Brad Harmon would love you to read ..Don’t Let Your Website Be Held HostageMy Profile

  8. Geo-targetting is ok if it your business is for local needs.
    1stblogger would love you to read ..Limera1n Exploit isn’t Patched in White iPhone 4My Profile

  9. Hi,
    Really nice article.This is a great concept to make small businesses known and get promoted. Thanks for sharing

    Regards,
    Vanessa

  10. The local concept sounds good and this rule applies to almost every kind of job we do, going local is more beneficial than outsourcing which only drains away. Economic crisis can cause havoc and what can be a better solution than trying to prevent such a situation. I liked the idea of a geo-targeting, whether the blog is a struggling one or already one with high PR going local somehow contributes in one way or the other.

    • Hi Brian,

      Having a geo-targeted niche blog would be perfect for those involved in real estate because you want a relationship with your readers BEFORE they want to buy or sell!

      Most people only read about real estate when they’re considering investing, so a blogger who writes entertaining content about the area, events, or even home improvement or interior design can create a relationship with potential customers long before they even know they might BE customers.

      Not many people want to read about each new house that comes on the market unless they’re ready to buy right now, but if you have a variety of content you can keep them engaged and they might decide to buy a home they see mentioned they never would have seen otherwise. I noticed that your Denver Real Estate blog does a fine job of sharing interesting topics.

      All real estate agents and brokers should be sure to have their local search directory listings as widespread as possible. The post I’ve used in CommentLuv in this reply has all the details on how to make that happen.
      growmap would love you to read ..Local Search Directory ListingsMy Profile

  11. Nipon Bharali says:

    Geo-targetting is ok if it your business is for local needs.But,if your business can work globally ,there is no need,go global.It will increase profits
    Nipon Bharali would love you to read ..Sony Ericsson Introduced XPERIA W8 SmartphoneMy Profile

    • Hello Nipon,

      Yes, global businesses do not need to target geographically, but I do hope they realize that if the majority of their sales are U.S. based how hyperinflation occurring here will impact their viability. Any business that sells primarily to the U.S. from elsewhere should be actively building more sales from as large a customer base as possible.
      growmap would love you to read ..Why the Economy is In Decline and What We Can Do to Improve ItMy Profile

  12. This is a very good,innovative and informative article.And the points on geo-targeted niche blog were well framed and excellently explained. Your concept is amazing.
    Steven Papas would love you to read ..NortonLive PC Power Boost CouponMy Profile

    • Thank you Steven and welcome to GrowMap,

      I do hope many bloggers clearly understand and will consider implementing this concept. I know that it will work – but they may not. That is why I will need to do follow-up case studies and posts about how it is working. It will take time to build a sufficient audience to prove the merits.
      growmap would love you to read ..DoFollow CommentLuv KeywordLuv CommunityMy Profile

  13. Although an interesting concept, like Henway already mentioned, I think the implementation of such a concept would not be the most wise. This article actually reminded me of another article I read about a week ago. Here’s the link if anyone is interested in reading it:

    http://blog.waxmarketing.com/2011/04/19/blogging-for-a-local-audience/
    Petra would love you to read ..Die Computerwerbung der ZukunftMy Profile

    • Welcome to GrowMap, Petra, and thank you for the link. This idea may not make nearly as much sense for smaller countries and small populations and you do have to know how large the niche you are targeting is.

      In the U.S. there are many very large populations where a large niche such as home improvement or sports or restaurants and entertainment can be coupled with a specific metro area and reach a huge audience.

      For example, Dallas Fort Worth Metro (DFW) is huge with millions of people and a blog that wrote about night spots or home improvement or car shows or family fun for that area could be very popular – and then attract heavy advertising dollars.

      In Texas you could do that for DFW, Austin, Houston or San Antonio – all of them have very large populations and then surrounding communities within 60-100 miles. The same is true for areas of Florida, New York and California as well as major cities in other states.

      A small, very highly targeted audience will always convert much more strongly than a huge, but very diverse readership with no specific common interests or location. Targeting advertising is the ONLY kind that works because targeted advertising converts!
      growmap would love you to read ..Media- Journalism- Blogging – Editorial or TruthMy Profile

  14. Cheap Web Hosting says:

    Great tips! I always like articles about niche marketing. Thank you for sharing this article for Us!
    Cheap Web Hosting would love you to read ..How to Transfer Your Website From One Web Host To Another Without Losing DataMy Profile

  15. This is a great concept. I’m gonna try and see how it goes. Will let you know of results. Question is: What do I do with it once it’s built?
    Ivin would love you to read ..Make Money- Market your Business by Self Publishing NewspapersMy Profile

    • Hi Ivin,

      The key is to have strong content related to the selected location and niche and start building a specific audience. Once you do that, then you are in a position to offer your blogging and social media services to local businesses in that niche and to sell advertising too.
      growmap would love you to read ..The Collaboration DebateMy Profile

  16. Going local with your blog is a great idea because you can then also attract local advertisers which usually attracts more income because the advertising can be more targeted.

    • Hello Andreas,

      Yes, those who buy or sell advertising need to understand that an ad is only as beneficial as the audience it can reach. I have had local businesses offer to buy ads on GrowMap but that made no financial sense for them so I recommended against it.

      Of the readers I have only a small percentage are in any particular location and of those how many are ready to buy a specific product or service during the time the ad runs? Once I build up a larger Dallas – Ft. Worth based readership then it WILL make sense for local businesses to buy ads here.

      That is why I recommend both a large niche AND a geographic location – so you can be a leading blog for a specific audience.
      growmap would love you to read ..Cornell University Yahoo! Research Twittersphere Study- Who Tweets What to Whom on TwitterMy Profile

  17. When I started my twitter stream @miamishines, it was mainly to connect with locals who are on twitter. This led to attending many Social Media functions in my city. I took many pictures and videos. The bulk of my content is about the connections I have made locally.
    My blog is optimized for Social Media Miami and I have had several small local businesses contact me because of my blog that found me through Google and I don’t blog too often.
    I kind of agree with Dennis about the business owners not controlling their own website. For some clients, I ask them if they are not going to write too much content, then I try to find a theme that doesn’t have such a bloggy look, to at least give them the option and encourage them to try at least 2x a month if they are hesitant. Because it has worked for me. I don’t get much traffic on my blog, but it is very geo targeted so I guess Google knows.
    I do like the idea of promoting the businesses with advertisement. But I haven’t gotten to that point yet. So I look forward to seeing your process in Dallas.
    Blanca Stella Mejia would love you to read ..I’m Speaking At Tilson PR-Score PartnershipMy Profile

    • Hi Blanca,

      I agree that it if a business is willing they should control their own site; however, many have difficulty just remembering not to let their domain expire so them controlling it won’t help them if they aren’t able to really stay on top of it.

      Traffic to a blog requires much more than just writing and many, many bloggers do not realize what really works yet. You could make your blog “the” Social Media for Miami Small Businesses site. The higher you can raise your visibility for that specific geo-targeted niche the more effectively you can benefit businesses near you.

      There are multiple specific strategies that every local business needs to implement. Those I consider most critical are prioritized in the post I’ll put in CommentLuv in this reply.
      growmap would love you to read ..Small Business Internet MarketingMy Profile

  18. I’m not sure if geo targeted blogs are really the next step… It’s hard as it is to reach a decent sized general audience online, but now you want to narrow it down to ppl in a specific area? That’s not gonna work.
    Henway would love you to read ..Nutrisystem ReviewsMy Profile

    • Hi Henway,

      Actually, what I am doing is both. This blog reaches an international audience but I also want to increase the geo-targeted audience for the Dallas Fort Worth Texas larger metro area because by doing so I can better benefit the businesses in that area.

      Bloggers and businesses alike need to stay focused on practical, real-world applications of our talents and not silly games or virtual reality. If you can spread your blog online AND offline there is stronger growth potential – and having a geo-targeted component will assist with that.
      growmap would love you to read ..Media- Journalism- Blogging – Editorial or TruthMy Profile

  19. This is a great concept to make small businesses known and get promoted. If you as a blogger is successful in this, you might get some opportunities too to promote other local small businesses. You might just become a local correspondent for up-and-coming businesses, some events, etc.
    Vivian would love you to read ..Anmeldelse af ny smart søgemulighed hos VivirocomMy Profile

  20. This article has a lot to learn form, because I have been writing blogs since 2 years but never had my local audience keeping an eye on it, the ideas of this article will really help me in growing my local business, the first point of this article that shopping locally is the solution to global economic decline, reducing environmental damage, and creating a better standard of living for all involved is something new to know and a very important point to concentrate on for letting our business do some good to our society too.
    Angela would love you to read ..Treatment For Dog FleasMy Profile

    • Hi Angela,

      Most businesses – even those that operate entirely online – can benefit from more local customers. There is absolutely no reason a blog can not target multiple audiences.

      Few realize that the current business model where products are shipped from across the planet to sell locally is ridiculous. It only serves the greedy who benefit from slave labor rates and foolish consumers who turn a blind eye to their own guilt at supporting such unethical business practices.

      At least some percentage of the population will wake up and realize that being greedy and selfish is not going to work much longer. In America, when the dollar crashes and hyper-inflation hits they won’t have any choice but to buy local or buy nothing because the dollar won’t buy much at all any more.

      There is much more about why the U.S. economy is not going to recover in the post I’ll put in CommentLuv in this reply – and that is going to affect other economies around the world.
      growmap would love you to read ..Why the Economy is In Decline and What We Can Do to Improve ItMy Profile

  21. Dennis Edell says:

    An interesting idea, but a little risky in at least one aspect.

    They are not in control of the blog. If the blog owner decides hes had enough, that’s it.

    Nowadays if a small business has a website, they need a blog (of their own) accompaniment to promote it….are you trying to put me outa business?!?!?! ;-)
    Dennis Edell would love you to read ..Guest blogging- Would You Like Me to Write for YouMy Profile

    • Hi Dennis,

      Yes, that risk exists no matter where you choose to invest your time. Twitter and Facebook throw people out all the time and a blogger could disappear, but if they have been online for years that isn’t very likely.

      I am not discouraging any business willing to install and maintain a blog from doing so as there IS definitely benefit in that. I’m just recognizing that for many small businesses that simply isn’t feasible because they lack the technical skills, time and money. This is the next best plan for them.

      For any business that has their own blog I encourage them to collaborate with bloggers in their niche and geographically near them and also to work with social media savvy folks like myself and the other bloggers I list in many of my posts including the one about using BizSugar to find small business advice blogs and posts.
      growmap would love you to read ..Guest Blogging Invitation Hiring Writers Ask Me!My Profile

  22. I have seen a lot of this on facebook but not blogs. I did set up our business listing geographically within Google and it seems to be working out. We do get calls and hits on our web site too. Not nearly enough to feed us though. We have been approached by several local BBB and marketing sites for banner ads but never blog posts. For us, it would be difficult to blog about stucco!

    Your concept should be well received, it’s great!
    redkathy would love you to read ..Little Miracle MissionsYou Can Pay it ForwardMy Profile

    • Hi Kathy,

      This is an idea we will have to take to the businesses and Chambers of Commerce and others interested in supporting a particular community. Most are not yet savvy enough to locate us.

      It really isn’t as difficult to blog about stucco as one might think. Before and after photos, the story of the family business, unique buildings they’ve worked on, maybe a Mexican restaurant they did a custom design for – the ideas are endless. Any time a blogger gets stuck for ideas I encourage them to Skype, Tweet or IM me. I can almost always throw out some that will work.

      Thank you for taking the time to comment.
      growmap would love you to read ..Why Businesses Should Use Social MediaMy Profile

  23. That’s an interesting concept. I would guess if we had some sections of our site dedicated locally, we could use that to plug into the power of local search in the long run, so if a blogger was searching for another blog in their area, they would come up in Places. That could be a neat way to connect!
    Kristi Hines would love you to read ..What to Do When You Are Not in the MoodMy Profile

    • Hi Kristi,

      It is early times for this idea; however, I feel strongly this is where bloggers’ talents can be used to create a better standard of living among those wise enough to understand the importance of supporting small businesses.
      growmap would love you to read ..Support Small BusinessesMy Profile

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