If you’re not running a blog for your business, then I’ve got bad news for you. You’re not fulfilling your potential for success. In 2013 Hubspot reported that 82% of marketers who blog daily acquired a customer using their blog.
But what are the exact benefits that blogging can bring to your business? And why implement blogging when you’re already utilising your social media channels, pay-per-click advertising or e-mail marketing?
1) It drives traffic to your site
Content Marketing is about providing value to your audience. If you’re giving them useful and engaging information, they’ll keep coming back for more.
You’ll gain organic traffic but you can also combine this with a social media or pay-per-click campaign (budget willing) to increase your readership. As you gain more visitors, you’ll be able to learn more about them with analytics. This new information will allow you to improve the targeting options in any of your advertising campaigns.
As you post more articles, you’ll also have access to a growing library of content you can refer and link to in new articles. This will result in users spending more time on your website (which could be one of your conversion goals).
2) More traffic to your site equals more into leads
You can take advantage of the increased traffic to gain more leads. In fact, B2B marketers that blog receive 67% more leads than those that do not.
Create a great landing page with a strong call-to-action, and you can gain potential leads and / or conversions. For example: build up your e-mail list by including a newsletter sign-up on your blog.
3) Grow your social media following
One of the main concerns for businesses on social media, is finding regular high-quality content to share. If you have a single person (or team) dedicated to producing valuable blog articles, you’ll have a consistent stream of content to share with your following.
This way you’re growing your social media following by posting great content, but also creating a larger audience for your future posts.
For the best results you can share your blog posts then broadcast them even further with targeted social media campaigns, in order to reach the correct audience. With the great targeting options that platforms like Facebook offer us (location, sex, interests etc), you’ll have no problem reaching your preferred customer.
4) Connect with your audience
Your aim is to create engaging content for people to interact with – like, share and comment. With blogs you’re showcasing your personality through your writing, giving your brand a human aspect, a very particular voice.
You are also creating a persona that your audience wants to engage with, and have trust in.
5) Great for SEO
As you add more unique content to your site and it gets indexed by Google, your website will gain higher rankings. Not only will your pages be more likely to show up higher in search engine result pages, but you will also improve your rankings for your main keywords.
And your work gets discovered, shared and referenced, it will lead to high-authority inbound links to your site. Other marketers and bloggers are always on the lookout for good content to share, either for themselves or for the companies they represent.
6) Blogging is a cost-effective means of marketing
Blogging is one of the most cost-effective ways of content marketing. The only real cost involved with publishing regular blog content is your time, and spending money on promoting your blog posts are entirely optional – definitely useful but optional nonetheless.
The best way to maximise the use of your blog posts, is to create topical content that is always going to be relevant – “evergreen content”. You can reuse these and promote them on a regular basis (which then helps free up time to create new content).
7) Establish yourself as an authority
Blogs are a highly trusted source of information. More so than the fleeting pieces of content you find on social media, people flock to the valuable content that blogs can supply. Provided you can create content regarding current trends within your vertical (or better, predict new trends), your readers will view you as an authority in your industry, and you will gain their trust.
8) Improve yourself, improve your brand
Creating valuable content on a consistent basis is a challenge. It requires that you know all you possible can in your industry – constantly doing researching and applying this knowledge to your writing.
But this information can be applied to your job as well. Share thoughts and ideas with your colleagues – see if any of your processes can be streamlined, or where money can be saved by working smarter.
The Challenges You Face
- Hard work – Though cost-effective, you won’t gain instant notoriety when starting your blog. You will need to present readers with content of genuine value. Which means you’ll need to invest time and effort.
- The competition – On WordPress.com alone, 56 million posts are published per month. In order to succeed you’ll need to create superior content than the majority of bloggers, and market / share extensively.
- Content length – Dr. Jonah Berger found in a study that long-form content is 76% more likely to go viral. The old days of 400-word articles working wonders for your marketing / SEO purposes are gone. Your minimum article length should be 1,500 words, with 2,500 to 3,000 words being your ultimate goal.
If you can overcome these obstacles, you’ll realise how much value it can bring as part of an overall digital marketing strategy. It’s a wonderful tool that can compliment all of your other digital marketing channels.
If you’re new to content marketing, there is no doubt that this should form part of your overall strategy. If you’re doing everything else except blogging, you’ll be amazed at how easily it will slot into your existing plans. It is another source of fuel that keeps your content marketing running.