Blogging has been a buzzword for quite some time now. Often, what comes to mind, are those “internet personalities” that are making a living through blogging. Sponsorships, social media advertisements, and paid campaigns make this possible. These internet personalities live and breathe the editorial calendar, the word count, and SEO, because they know the truth: blogging brings in website traffic, which creates conversions, and brand advocates.
But think about your favorite product, brand or service. Are you aware if they have even have a blog? If so, how often do you read it? The fact is, brands are less likely to blog on a regular basis than professional bloggers. Let’s do the math: if one person can make a living off of the traffic and income that comes with professional blogging, then how much more could a business benefit from putting the same time and effort into having a blogging presence?
Now that your wheels are turning, we’ve put together a list of statistics to help drive the point home: if you have any sort of digital presence at all, blogging needs to be at the top of your priority list. Drum roll, please…
Why Brands Don’t Blog
You’ve heard the saying “keep the main thing, the main thing,” and this is great advice as businesses are usually run by dreamers and even the most disciplined dreamers can get ahead of themselves and derail quickly. This is why CEO’s have a strong team of advisors and people around them: to keep the main thing the main thing. The “main thing” is often why brands are so successful; it’s now they become known for being an expert in their field and it is also how they can grow and evolve and stay consistent with their own brand strategy.
However, in an effort to keep the main thing the main thing, we may accidentally exclude opportunities to enhance the main thing. What I mean is this: if a product is the main thing, then all of our efforts go into the creation, execution and perfection of said product. This could look like packaging, website copy and design, marketing efforts such as SEO, emails, and social media with compelling imagery. And while all of these are secondary avenues to supporting the product, we don’t bat an eye at their effectiveness.
Blogging, on the other hands feels like a black hole to some businesses. Perhaps it’s because they aren’t sure what could be said about a product that isn’t already being said in other efforts. And that’s where we are approaching blogging all wrong. Blogging should never just be about different ways to tell people what your product is. Instead, it should be about product demonstrations, thought leadership, and an entirely different point of view. By writing these posts with secondary or supporting thoughts as the focus, the diversity of the product will stand out, and reinforce the main thing.
At it’s best, blogging should be a zooming out of the product in order to zoom in.
The ROI on Blogging
According to an annual survey from Hubspot, business bloggers are coming around and kicking it into gear with their blogging strategy and seeing major results:
- 84% of businesses who blog claim to see strong or some results
- 67% of businesses say when they blog more than once a day they saw even stronger results (although the industry average is 1 blog/week).
And these results were most often made from a few small changes to their marketing strategy overall:
- 49% of business say when they invest more than 6 hours a blog post compared to the average of 3.5 hours, they saw strong results
- 1142 words produced better results, a sign that the longer the blog post, the better.
- 58% of businesses saw an increase in results when they used more than one image per post.
- 2x the amount of businesses who blog have decided to hire an editor on board and, as a result, have seen big results.
Numbers don’t lie. It’s clear that when blogging is taken seriously, it yields serious results.
How to Get in the Blogging Game
If you don’t have a blogging strategy, it’s time to get one. It is a hard sell to start a new endeavor that requires a full-time employee with benefits right out of the gate. Digital agencies have full-time, dedicated writers who are trained in what it takes to research your audience and product, know your brand, and execute a blog in your tone and voice. They are experts in telling stories, connecting the dots and making sure the main thing is the main thing without being overly “sale-sy” about it.
If you already have a blogging strategy, we recommend making sure you have the following in place to ensure you keep the main thing the main thing while providing thoughtful blogs to your readers:
- Editorial calendars will keep you on track, but also help your marketing strategy overall. We recommend a six month overview broken down on a monthly basis in a more detailed structure.
- Make sure you blogs are outfitted with an SEO strategy so people can find them organically, as well.
- Decide a specific call to action for each blog, and stick to it.
- Be sure to integrate your blogs with your social media strategy to help spread the word.
- Connect with social media influencers who will be advocates for your blog as well as plan to write a guest post from time to time.
Don’t be afraid to invest time and money into this endeavor. Blogging is not going away. If anything, with the additional importance of video, blogs certainly are in the majors–a blog will undoubtedly give you more online visibility. And a well-written blog, according to Forbes will “improve your credibility, and help you establish trust with your readers.” And isn’t that what you’re after?