Four Reasons Why Blogging is (Still) Good for Business
Updated: Jan 29, 2019
So you’re great at what you do, but for some reason the world isn’t breaking down your door to buy your product. Or maybe it is but you want to expand your customer base to include not just the world but the far reaches of the galaxy as well. How do you get the word out there? More importantly, how do you compete for people's attention in these information-overloaded times?
Well, you could go for some old-fashioned marketing techniques like cold emailing. But let’s face it, nobody likes a spammer (not to mention that buying email lists can land you on the wrong side of data protection laws). Or you could invest in paid ads, but the cost can add up pretty quickly and your ads stop running the second your budget is spent.
One alternative is to start a blog. Of course, every January the Internet is flooded with posts predicting that this year will finally see the death of blogging. But then there’s also no shortage of posts predicting the return of Elvis and the end of the world (those last ones may actually have a point). Truth is, nobody can predict the future (if we could, we’d all be playing the stock market instead of sitting here writing blog posts). As it stands, blogging remains an attractive, cost-effective content marketing strategy.
So what are the benefits of blogging for your business?
1. Blogging puts you on the map
Today’s sophisticated consumers are not going to be impressed by the sales equivalent of you standing on a street corner with a megaphone shouting about how great your product is. Content marketing means giving something out – information, tips, advice – to get something back – attention, leads, customers.
Blogging establishes you as an authority in your field. Writing about what you know allows you to showcase your expertise without showing off. Sharing useful content that solves people’s problems builds genuine trust in your brand and means you’ll be at the forefront of their minds when making purchasing decisions.
Blogging helps build your brand. Coherent and consistent use of language, style, visuals, and the incorporation of your values into each post educate your audience about what you do.
If you put the hours in building your reputation and a loyal following, you'll have their attention when the time comes to announce your news, share a promotion or start a campaign via your blog. Plus, unlike a press release to the media, when you announce your news via your blog you control the content, so there’s no chance of misinterpretation.
2. Blogging drives traffic to your website
If your website isn’t coming up on page 1 of Google searches then it isn’t working for you as an effective marketing tool. Ask yourself: do you want to luxuriate in the warm hot spot at the top left hand corner of page 1, or shiver in the frozen wastelands of page 2 and beyond?
Of course we all want to be at the top of the heap. But to attain the dizzy heights of page 1 there’s a mountain to climb. A mountain littered with the frozen corpses of sub-optimal websites and useless content. This is where good content marketing strategy comes in, and a regularly updated blog can help you get a foothold on the sheer cliff face that is Google ranking.
Here are a couple of things to remember about Google:
1. You are not the customer. The only users Google cares about are people surfing the Internet. If your website doesn’t provide them with what they’re looking for it will drop you down the ranking faster than you can say “Bing, anyone?” If, however, you consistently attract and keep visitors’ attention (long enough, say, to read a 1000 word blog post) then you’ll be rewarded by moving up the ladder.
2. Google loves active websites. Each new blog post - with judiciously-chosen keywords - is another indexed page on your website, giving you more chances to show up in search results. And the more you update your website with content, the often more Google will stop by to see what’s new with you.
A blog is the content that keeps on giving. A blog post provides you with content to share on social media, another great way of driving traffic to your web. Plus, a post doesn’t have to stop working for you once it’s published. Some posts are immediate and topical, but others are timeless, or ‘evergreen’, meaning your content keeps working for you online long after its original publication. Evergreen content also has the advantage that you can retrieve it from time to time and share it again.
3. Blogging gets leads
Calls-to-action in your posts drive visitors to other parts of your site, whether it’s a subscription form or a free giveaway to download. In this way, you legitimately obtain emails to add to your mailing lists and which you can then pass it on to your sales team to follow up. According to HubSpot “B2B marketers who use blogs receive 67% more leads than those who do not, and marketers who have prioritized blogging are 13x more likely to enjoy positive ROI.”
4. Blogging is good for you too
A blog creates an archive of useful information that serves as a resource not only for your readers but also for you and your teams to refer back to.
Blogging is also a good way to hone your writing and communications skills, and researching posts and reading to stay abreast of developments in your field increase your knowledge base. It's certainly my favourite thing about content writing.
So there you have it: regular blogging keeps your website dynamic, your brain working, your audience hooked and your reputation rosy. Best of all, the only real investment it requires is time.
Obviously blogging isn’t for everyone. Nor is good content writing just a matter of throwing words at a screen. Stay tuned for future posts on how to decide whether blogging is the right content marketing strategy for you, choosing the right kind of posts for your audience, and other tips for successful blogging.