Over the past five years or so blogging has evolved into a serious online marketing strategy. Why? An online presence via a blog can be responsible for reaching an audience outside traditional marketing routes, generating leads and thus potential clients or sales. It doesn’t matter what product or service you sell, or which industry you are in.
Does your company have a blog page on its website? Is it updated regularly?
You’d be amazed (OK, well we are) at the number of businesses that create a blog page on their website and then let it languish after a couple of posts. Or even those that don’t have a blog at all.
Perhaps it’s tricky to know what to do with them: how to write them, which subjects to cover. More familiar in tone than traditional publicity material, a blog is not a straightforward piece of journalism either. A blog is a new format that requires an altogether different approach. And that’s before you even start to consider SEO. That often gets us scratching our heads too. But it’s not rocket science and the returns definitely make it worthwhile.
But first, let’s take a look at some statistics:
- Companies that blog generate 55% more site visits, 97% more links to their websites and their pages get indexed a whole 434% more often than those that don’t.
- Blogs also, on average, cost their companies 62% less than traditional marketing methods.
Interested now? We thought you might be.
If your company regularly updates its blog pages, good for you. You will reap the rewards. If your company doesn’t, here are the reasons why you need to consider it:
1. Your Voice: Being Heard
Blogging gives your company a voice and personality. Whether you are trying to stand out in a crowded market or offer a niche product or service, a blog is your company’s individual voice that will get you heard above the digital chatter. It can, and often is, more personable in tone than the rest of a website.
2. Being Heard: Engagement
This voice can be used to engage with anyone interested in your product or browsing your site – let’s call these people potential or existing customers or clients (!) – and start a conversation with them.
Always ask for feedback and be receptive to comments. The more you get and engage with the better for your website in terms of online visibility and SEO (more of this later). This feedback gives your company valuable insight into how people are responding to your service or product. That’s free market research.
Furthermore, the more you engage with your visitors the more likely you are to build up a community of people already interested in what you are doing and thus build brand loyalty.
3. A Community Forum
Running a blog means you offer people something more than just your regular services. You can share your news, views and opinions: things that matter to you (and therefore, by extension, those visiting your site) and present them in a way that no-one else will. Your blog can be a source of information, an opportunity for interaction and discussion, a forum for debate. It can position as an expert in your field.
4. Here’s the Biggie: SEO
Search Engine Optimization is a daunting term. You could read entire books about it if you had the time and inclination (I don’t think I do). But we don’t need to delve into the details here. All you need to know is that essentially it’s a way of maximising your website’s visibility when it comes to cropping up in people’s internet searches. SEO is all about creating the right conditions for a high search ranking when potential customers are looking for a brand, product or service online.
Dormant websites don’t get noticed by search engines. Search engines reward websites for producing fresh content and using relevant keywords.
And the best way to put relevant new content on your website? You guessed it, a blog.
Every blog post you publish is a brand new URL. How many pages can your website legitimately have? An About page? A Product/Services page? A Who We Are page? After a while you run out of options. With a blog you have endless opportunities to create new pages. They can be noticed by search engines, ranked and then discovered by people who don’t know about your business. Yet.
5. And Finally: Share, Share, Share
Once you’ve got a blog you have content. And with all that content, it would be criminal to keep it just to your blog pages. Email it out to your subscribers or those clients on your database. A blog can also be shared via social media. Tweet and re-Tweet it. Share it on Facebook. Can you use it on Instagram? If you have a social media account (and you’re not expected to use them all but please say you have some), repackage it and make that blog work for its money. Don’t forget the hashtags.
Once it’s out there the possibilities are limitless. Now your blog can help you get found online by anyone using a computer or mobile phone, via a search engine or social media format. Imagine that – your reach becomes virtually infinitesimal. For ever. This brings leads you wouldn’t have without a blog, way beyond the reach of any advertising and marketing team and budget. Blog content really is the gift that keeps on giving.
At Individualise we love blogs and blogging. Contact us if you need help with yours.