Businesses these days are about volumes. More the number of new entrants in all markets, more volumetric the game becomes. Volumes entice “self manufacturing” which in turn helps to develop a larger market using other business verticals. The question is, should you try to become self sustainable just yet?
I often speak with brand owners, marketers, suppliers about sales & sales margins, marketing & marketing ROI, brand positioning & branding. The effectiveness of the conversation depends largely on the “authenticity” or decision-making authority of the “connect” in the organization. If you may recall, we did a post on Google plus about the man who charged $1000 for fixing a ship by just hitting with a hammer at the “right spot”.
Well, it is not always that you can walk away with that kind of money, but even conversations or “negotiations” work much in this way. If you do not know where you are “hitting”, the efforts may turn out to be useless.
A business comprises largely of a product or service, which is sold for a profit. Profit is defined as the difference in cost of producing or sourcing the product and the selling price to end consumer. To drive profits, multiple strategies are employed at sales, marketing, operational, technological, financial level. Investments in each, all or some of the above verticals for an organization results in reduced costs thereby increased profits (well, in most of the cases).
Businesses which are self sustained:
To further reduce costs and boost profits, an organization may look to develop and manufacture its own brand of products. For Example, WaLMart, RIM (Yes, the BlackBerry). WalMart’s stores are full of products and brands from across the world. But if you pick up some of the products and check for name of marketer or distributor, WalMart itself would be printed. Why so? Simply because they believe a product has a market, but more importantly, WalMart is a trusted brand name. RIM, started a 3PL (Third Party Logistics) company and started managing logistics. Then they entered supply chain management for brands and launched RIM owned Blackberry.
Consider KFC or McDonalds. These companies own farms of chicken and potato respectively. Why does not your favorite local bakery own wheat fields? The answer lies in creating. The idea is to create a brand name first and then launch a product of your own to drive profitability. Not to forget, the consumer remains the “king” and investments in Sales, Marketing and other verticals mentioned earlier will still be needed.
Knowing when to enter a market with your own product requires research on consume trends, competitors etc. Thus you need to know your market inside out, else the effort shall be useless (and since its business, costly).
How do you reduce costs for running multiple blogs?
Blogging as a business:
If we look at a blog as a “FMIG” (Fast moving Internet Goods), we can define parameters and operate in a certain way. Creating your own posts costs lesser than employing someone. But what about when you have more blogs (say 20-30)? If you can write these manage these many blogs on your own, hats off. But realistically, you need a constant supply of quality content.
Would you rather invest in creating content or checking the quality of content? I would suggest both. Having multiple people offsite, to write for you is a good strategy to create variety in your content and keep users engaged. On the other hand, you should also check for quality of the content (and editing). One solution to this is let guest author publish content on your blog. You could do a quality check, and Harsh guide on how he accepts guest post, will be best way to start with.
But guest posting will never meet your requirement, or your audience expectations. A good strategy would be, have an in-house team or let people work for you remotely. There are websites which will let you find writers, and once you have your writing, and editing team setup, you could work on other promotional stuff.
Raw material for a blog is content. Everything done to streamline content creation will help a business sustain long-term presence. Once you start producing raw material for your own end product, the cost and insight into the product will reduce drastically. (Sadly, I do not have numbers to prove this or even to strongly support this).
Do you think blogging is actually manufacturing content and “selling” to the consumer? How a blogger can make his blog self sustainable?