Self Expression Magazine

Why Brand Journalism Means Being a Good Neighbor First

By Waxgirl333 @waxgirl333

Along with content marketing, we keep hearing the term “brand journalism” when people talk about public relations. The conundrum these days is that the less you promote your brand or service, the more license your followers and readers will give you to promote your brand or service. If you’re scratching your head at this point don’t worry – we all are. Finding the right mix of creating and curating content, and promoting your business can be perplexing.

Let’s look at this in terms of good and bad neighbors. When my bad neighbor  (whom I’ve only just met)  pokes her head over the fence  

Why brand journalism means being a good neighbor first
and starts telling me what kind of fertilizer to use on my lawn, I get pretty annoyed. I haven’t gotten to know this person, her preferences or her abilities with landscaping. Why on earth should I take her advice? On top of that, she doesn’t know me at all. She has never asked about whether I prefer fescue or kentucky bluegrass – or if I’m an avid lawn-waterer or an “only when it’s brown” kind of gal.

Conversely, what about the good neighbor? This neighbor and I have been living next door for a little while. We’ve exchanged pleasantries and my good neighbor has offered to show me some websites that have lawn care tips. Perhaps she’s shared some of her own battles with her lawn. (After all, we have similar soil, don’t we?) Now this neighbor wants to suggest a certain grass seed or a particular lawn care company. Of course I’ll listen. Perhaps I’ve even asked her for a referral first!

The point is, it doesn’t take that long to become a “good neighbor” and develop the type of relationship in which your brand or product or service has credibility and trust. And therefore has license to offer solutions. This is what you must do if you plan to employ a content marketing or brand journalism strategy.

I’m going to add one last point however, and this is important. It never works if you’re just faking it to get a sale. You have to practice brand journalism in the true spirit of offering assistance..WHETHER OR NOT THEY EVER BUY FROM YOU.  Otherwise customers will know. They always know.

More on that in the next post…


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