You may have heard a lot of people talking about ‘blogging’ over the last few years, and about how it’s important for businesses to succeed online, but just how important is it? Why does it work? What can you really get by blogging for your business website?
Perhaps you’re one of those people who is sceptical of blogging as a marketing tactic, instead favouring techniques with a more measurable ROI (return on investment).
The first thing you need to know about blogging is that its sole purpose isn’t to increase sales or enquiries for your website. You can’t look at blogging as you would, say, PPC (pay per click) and expect it to produce a similar percentage conversion. That’s not what blogging is for and, if you try to make all of your blogs convert, you’ll be missing the point of them entirely.
I realise that, having just said that, you could be instantly put off the concept of blogging. If it doesn’t convert as well as PPC then why should you waste your money on it when it could be better spent elsewhere?
Increased rankings and traffic for longtail searches
If you’ve ever hired an online marketing agency before, you’ll be familiar with the concept of keywords. Typically, they’ll identify a number of keywords that are relevant to your industry and are likely to lead to conversions on your website if people successfully find your website after searching for them. The online marketing agency (sometimes called an SEO agency) will optimise your website for these key phrases and, if they’re good at what you do, you’ll start to see increased rankings, traffic and conversions.
However, how can you know everything your potential customers are searching for? You might know your products and services, but do you know how all of the people who need your products and services might be looking for you? What words will they enter into Google? What will they be searching for? That’s where blogging comes in.
By writing good quality content around your industry, you’re naturally combining your key phrases with words that are commonly used – which means your blogs will rank for phrases you, or your online marketing agency, haven’t optimised for. This is called longtail search (search phrases with several words, as opposed to one or two words to make a key phrase).
Generates links you couldn’t get anywhere else
Links from other websites are the lifeblood of the internet. The more links you get from good quality, relevant websites, the better it is for your website’s rankings. This is essentially what every website owner should be striving for.
Of course, many online marketing agencies have taken this to mean they should buy or rent links from websites. This is both costly and against Google’s Terms of Service, so don’t do it. Instead, the best links you can get come from blogging. By writing quality content around your industry – content that is unique, interesting and engaging – you’ll increase your chances of being linked to naturally by the sorts of websites where you couldn’t buy a link even if you tried. These might include such sites as industry leaders or news publications. If you’re first with a particular insight into a new change in your industry, or you’re writing about something nobody else is yet aware of, you can be seen as the news source. This will generate links, especially if you use social media to share the blog with journalists and industry experts.
Don’t be shy in doing this, it’s what it’s there for.
Generates social sharing
While we’re talking about social sharing, such as Twitter and Facebook, this is another area where blogs are the perfect vehicle. Every time someone shares your blog post via social media, you’re receiving another social link, and your blog is being exposed to each of their followers – which could be hundreds of thousands of people if your blog is shared by the right person. Without blogging, you can’t tap into this potential audience – an audience you couldn’t reach by any other means.
If done right, this generates discussion around your brand. For instance, we wrote a blog a few months ago about how you add videos longer than 30 seconds to Twitter. It was an instructional blog showing people how you can upload long videos to Twitter as, by default, Twitter limits the videos to 30 seconds. We now rank #1 in Google for related search terms and the blog has received over 10,000 visits from people wanting to know how to do it.
It has also been shared via Twitter many times over, increasing its exposure. This means tens of thousands of people have been exposed to the Online Learning Academy brand, and they know we’re experts on Twitter. This is handy, seeing as we also offer a diploma course on Twitter.
Without blogging, we wouldn’t have had this exposure. Had we paid for sponsored tweets, or Google AdWords, this kind of traffic would have cost a lot more than the cost of writing a comprehensive blog post. Additionally, the blog post will keep driving traffic for as long as people are looking for the information. Each additional visit doesn’t cost us a penny, unlike with sponsored tweets or PPC.
Generates more traffic for the right blog
Our blog on adding videos on Twitter is just one example. If you write about the most relevant topics and make your content unique and interesting, you can get this sort of result with multiple blogs – all bringing people to your website.
Of course, you do need to make the blogs relevant to your product or service. There’s no point having people visiting your website in their thousands if they have no interest on what you offer.
This is the most valuable result you’ll get from blogging for your business. You’ll expose your brand to new people who would otherwise have never heard of you and have no idea what you do. How you then go about reconnecting with those people is up to you.
You can use tools like Facebook Pixels to build a custom audience for Facebook Ads, you can have newsletter sign-up forms, you can offer them share options such as ‘share via Twitter’ or ‘Click to Tweet’, making it as easy as possible for them to engage with you.Why blogging is good for business Click To Tweet
The options are endless, and are all through the use of a blog.
Of course, if you want to learn more about blogging – such as how you do it, what are the best topics to write about, how you source ideas, how you research keywords, what are the best platforms etc. – you’ll need our Blogging for Business diploma course. The course is £295 but we have a special discounted rate available for readers of our blog where you get the course for just £29 by using the discount code BLOGGING in the checkout.
Check out the course now, and let us know in the comments if you have any questions or feedback.
Ever been in a situation where you’ve wondered where you went wrong trying to write for a website? Maybe you’ve heard ‘content is king’ and know blogs and articles are what you need to be doing, but you’ve no idea where to start.