Today I went to Barnes and Noble to pick up a book called Eat, Pray, Love for my NEPA Chick Lit Book Group (there will be a review when I’m finished reading it, which proves Nolie’s point that every experience can lead to a post). And while I was there, I decided to do a bit of people watching and marketing homework per today’s assignment for the SITS Problogger Challenge. Actually, the assignment was to go to the mall but, um, yeah, I hate our mall. It’s incredibly small and not my idea of a good time but Barnes and Noble… Oh my gosh, every time I walk in there, it’s like the mother ship has called me home. Truth be told, I feel that way about Pier 1 too.
The first thing I noticed when I walked into Barnes and Noble was that all of the new books and best sellers are right up front, so you can’t miss them as you enter the store. Hmmmm….in thinking about my blog, my newest post is the one that pops up first when you first access my blog. However, I like how some bloggers have their blogs set up like store fronts. For example, when you go to Jennifer’s blog, Eighty MPH Mom, the first thing you see is a rotating “featured content” section that highlights not just her newest content but giveaways that she’s hosting or other posts she might feel to be important. This allows the reader to pick what they want to read or follow Jennifer’s guidance and read what she wants thinks is important. Just like in a store, you don’t think the candy bars are by the cash register by accident, do you?
The next thing I noticed was how people shopped in the bookstore: women browsed the shelves while men headed directly for whatever they were looking for. OK, I’m making generalizations here, but you’ve all seen men and women in stores. We shop differently. The lesson for blogging is that you have to appeal to the sexes. Women, for the most part, want to know why you do something and men want to to know how you do something. I think a good blog provides a nice mix of the two. Krystal Grant’s Guide to Life offers practical advice for dealing with both the hows and whys of a situation.
Last but not least, there’s the smell of the store. Barnes and Noble smells like Starbucks. And lemme tell ya, coffee is probably one of the sweetest smells around and when I figure out how to scent my blog, you will be the first to know.
This post was written as part of the 31 Day Problogger Challenge that is being sponsored by SITS.