Apart from capturing search traffic, establishing authority, improving rankings, creating leads…?
Blogging as a business tool has been around for quite a while now and yet, not every business is fully committed to it. There might be a few reasons for that. Some don’t really engage in any marketing and just rely on word of mouth and hoping for the best. Some may believe it’s not direct enough and prefer paid advertising or email marketing. And others may just think that they don’t have the resources for it, that it’s for bigger businesses with marketing teams, and besides that, what would they blog about anyway?
If you are not blogging, for whatever reason, you are definitely missing out on opportunities. While it’s not as direct a form of marketing as some, there are many tangible benefits to engaging in it and it’s something that any business can (and probably should) do.
7 reasons why you should be blogging
Here are 7 legitimate reasons to regularly update your blog, regardless of the size or nature of your business:
1. Demonstrate your expertise
It’s very likely that the rest of your website says how brilliant you are, and it should of course; that’s the point. However, nothing truly demonstrates it like talking about your area of expertise in a non-marketing way. What I mean by this is that a blog should be different in tone to that of the rest of your website. It could be in the format of an article or as a source of information or instruction. It could be focusing in on niche detail or providing your commentary and linking it to topical issues. Maybe utilise case studies or Q&As, create ‘how to pieces’, or perhaps ‘5 top tips’ or ‘10 reasons why..’ etc. Blogs are generally easier to consume and less in-your-face-salesy and they, therefore, build authority and establish thought leadership. It’s your chance to show that you know your stuff. It also humanises the business and allows visitors to feel like they are connecting with real people.
2. Capture search traffic
People use search engines to discover things and find answers, primarily, and the search engine’s main priority is to help them do that as quickly as possible. Therefore, if you are writing about the things that your customers are searching for, your site is much more likely to be found. When working for a plumbing and heating firm, the vast majority of the search traffic the site acquired came in via blog posts and not ‘About’ or ‘Services’ or any other areas of the site. One of the first rules of marketing is considering where your potential customer’s pain is and presenting a solution. Blogging is perfectly positioned to allow you to do that. This is often known as AEO (Answer Engine Optimisation).
3. Google will like you more
As touched on in the above post, if you are providing answers to searchers’ questions, Google will elevate your content so you will rank higher. The more niche, the better as it has less competition, so focus on the angles that others aren’t covering. The more people click on your site, the more popular Google will believe your site to be and, in turn, will rank it higher, increasing your reach exponentially. It also likes sites that are regularly updated and adding to your blog frequently is the easiest way to do that.
4. Your blog content can be repurposed
Time spent creating blog content is the gift that keeps giving as it can be reused many times over. Repurpose it for social media posts, infographics, email newsletters, discussion topics, polls, or carousels on sites like LinkedIn etc. You only need to create the core content once and you can adapt and reshape it with little extra effort for multiple opportunities. Read more about this here. A client of mine, for whom I wrote 25+ blogs per month, reported that whenever they shared the blogs on Facebook, they achieved up to 100 extra clicks per post to the site.
5. Blogs have great longevity
If you are engaging in marketing activities such as paid ads (eg Google AdWords, Facebook ads etc) you will know that they can bring in great results at the time but as soon as you stop paying, the response stops dead. Likewise, email marketing can bring in an initial hit but it’s soon cold. Blogs on your site stay around forever, for no further cost. It can be great to jump onto a topical issue and capitalise on that, and those types of post will have a limited shelf life but your ‘evergreen’ content – writing about timeless subjects that remain relevant indefinitely – will keep ranking forever as long as people are interested in the topic. In fact, the longer they stay on the site, the better they will perform as they continue to be indexed, found, and shared. On the reverse of that, just remember that content marketing is a long term strategy; don’t expect to put blogs out there and expect instant results. It’s like gardening: nurture your content and over time it will bloom!
6. It helps you build quality links
If you have ever looked into search engine optimisation (SEO) practices, you will definitely have come across the term ‘link building’. It remains one of the key objectives for SEO and refers to other sites featuring links back to your content. There are many ways to build links, some of them legitimate and some of them very frowned upon (and more likely to have the opposite effect as ‘black hat’ methods can result in your site being penalised), but by far the most valuable way to create links from high authority domains is by creating quality content that these sites will want to link to. A post that I wrote for my plumbing and heating client about how to rescue your drains if they have become clogged with water beads back in 2018 not only remains at the top of page 1 of Google for several related search terms but is linked to in many other sources, including forum threads on Mumsnet and sites around the world. Remember, while you might think that visitors from Australia and the like are irrelevant to a plumbing and heating firm in West Yorkshire, they will all help increase the site’s domain authority, build expertise, and improve rankings so they are still highly valuable – not all content is aimed at those who can and will buy from you.
7. It can help to convert visits to leads
The best blogs tend to be more informative, helpful, or conversational and not rabidly sales driven but that doesn’t mean they can’t convert visits to leads. In fact, they can be better positioned to do that than your ‘brochure’ style content because they help to build trust, humanise the business, offer more evidential expertise, and show that you understand their challenges. Therefore, teamed with a call to action and tools such as a simple enquiry form, they can offer a direct link to new business.
So, why aren’t you doing it?
If you are convinced by the above that blogging is worth doing but you’re still finding barriers such as time, lack of copy writing skills, or just not knowing what to write about, these are all resolvable problems. Blogging can be outsourced, or you may just need someone to support you to get started with some mentoring or skills development. I can help with this, just get in touch to find out how I can support you to take advantage of all these benefits and more.