Blog. Blog. Blog. We hear that all the time, don’t we? I don’t mind the topic of blogging. And I really don’t mind the act of doing it either. It can actually be somewhat therapeutic. And educational!
But what is the professional purpose of blogging as a small business owner? And what are the advantages of doing so?
Why Blogging Helps Your Business
I’ve got five good reasons listed below. We may have some naysayers out there, but that’s not what we’re here to talk about! Today we talk about the advantages of including blogging in your marketing and branding strategy. Advantages such as…
- Driving traffic to your website.
- Increasing your online visibility.
- Giving your brand a unique voice.
- Positioning your brand as an industry leader.
- Developing affinity with your customers.
Driving Traffic to Your Website
In this context, blogging is about generating content to drive your customers to your website. It’s not paying for an ad, it’s writing to your audience. And it’s a strong marketing strategy. Companies who blog generate 55% more site visits (HubSpot).
Make your blog the foundation for all your social media platforms. Include a link and imagery on your social platforms and watch your followers engage and click through to your web site. And when writing your blog, include links within the blog that then direct readers even deeper into your web site by driving them to relevant landing pages. You won’t be alone. In 2017, 66% of marketers reported using blogs in their social media content (Social Media Examiner).
Don’t just limit your thinking to social, either. Blog posts attract site traffic through search engines, email, and even syndication. So give it a shot. It’s a great way to drive traffic and a nice substitute to investing in ad spend if you’re looking for a good cost-effective alternative. Because it’s free! Or can be. With the only cost being your time.
Increasing Your Online Visibility
Blogs increase your SEO. Fact. Websites with a blog tend to have 434% more indexed pages (Tech Client). This means blogs contribute to more content on your site. The more content, the more for search engines to crawl and index, and thus recognize your site is a resource offering content for people to consume. Fresh content is still a key strategy to beating out your competitors in the search engine results page.
What else? Use keywords in your blogs. Don’t know your keywords? No worries. It just takes a little marketing research. And even once you have those key words and phrases in-hand, always write your story first, then go back to optimize for search. Google still cares about optimization, but they also now very much care about the quality of what you’re writing and how valuable your readers find it.
1 in 10 blog posts are compounding, meaning organic search actually increases the blogs traffic over time because you’re putting out long-term relevant content and providing advice (or you should be). Hence the increase in traffic over time. Because the content doesn’t go stale.
Giving Your Brand a Unique Voice
Blogging allows you to do that. Now, first understand who you want to be as a brand – what your company branding strategy is. And who your audience is. Then speak their language in your own, unique way. Let your brand persona stand out here. When your authenticity comes through, that’s when you’ll see people really start to engage. And know that this may not happen overnight. It takes some time to find your perfect voice! But finding that voice while also staying true to brand will make you memorable. And memorable bloggers make an impact on their business. People remember you, refer you, and come back for more.
Positioning Your Brand as an Industry Leader
We all have competition. We just do! There are so many avenues we can take to get what we want. So gaining followers – loyal followers – is no easy task. But blogging is a way for you to prove your expertise. And even generate leads.
Blog posts can help naturally qualify leads simply by the fact that these individuals are already reading your blog. Meaning they likely already have an expressed interest in what you do! It can become a natural match. B2B marketers that use blogging as a strategy get 67% more leads than those that do not (HubSpot). Also take note that HubSpot indicates marketers that have prioritized blogging are 13x more likely to enjoy a positive ROI. Your blog is working for you even when you’re not working.
To be an industry leader, remember, it’s not just about knowing your industry. It’s about knowing your audience. Knowing what’s on their mind. What keeps them up at night. And blogging about what they care about the most.
Developing Affinity with Your Customers
Blogging is about generating content for your customers. Or potential customers. And, mind you, relevant content. And if you are doing that – generating relevant content – then your blog becomes an awesome marketing tool for your business. And get this – blogs have been rated the 5th most trusted source for accurate information online. Your customers start to trust you as a source – and that’s like the number one rule of friendship. And you want your customers to consider you a friend.
Hopefully you feel a bit more educated on why and how blogging can impact your business. Now just a few quick tips (for the actual blogging part):
- Tell your story
- Know your audience
- Write about things that matter to you
- Experiment with length
- Think about what you want your reader to do with this information
- Produce consistently, and produce quality content
And then hopefully start recognizing the advantages shared above!