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This is perhaps the million dollar question when it comes to businesses and blogging. We have to admit, one of the biggest reasons companies enter the world of blogging is to find new customers. This can be done in various ways. A business can set up its own blog. Alternatively, a business can get other bloggers to write about their product or service. In both cases, the aim is the same – to get the word out about something that the business is selling. Yet are the results going to be the same for both approaches?

I got the inspiration for this post when I read Tim Parry’s post “Can a Blog Really Increase Leads?” He illustrates an example:

Floren had Mills running a contest: “Write a Blog Post about Outsourcing and Make Money.” The idea is to get bloggers to spread the word about Mills’ new e-book, “The Outsource Compendium.”

So in other words, this guy is going to pay bloggers to review the e-book and post something about it. My guess is whoever brings him the most leads wins.

“You can think of this as a sales incentive. A lot of big corporations will have major sales contests for their top sales people. Sometimes they’ll give out cash, cars, electronics, travel, etc.,” Floren wrote in an e-mail “We are doing the same thing to motivate other Websites to promote us, and I’ve seen several six and seven figure product launches do contests similar to this.”

I think that this approach can indeed generate tons of leads. Yet as Parry said so himself, how many of the leads are going to be qualified? How many of them would actually be converted into sales? We really cannot tell. Yet I think that it could work. What about you?

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