A recurring topic when I speak to clients is the importance of blogging. Is it really necessary? Why does my business need to blog? Will blogging attract my ideal customers? The simple answer is yes, blogging for business is vital and should be a part of any strategic marketing campaign.
Not to say it is easy. Yes, blogging for business can a pain at times. You have to put aside to time to work on something that you may not see an immediate benefit from. This is especially hard when when there are so many fires to put out on a day-to-day basis. However, blogging is one of the best investments you can make in your business.
First, let’s define blogging (in my terms). Blogging is simply writing an informal piece that goes up on your site. It does not have to follow the writing rules you learned in school—and most likely shouldn’t. This is a place where your client gets to know you and your offerings, not how well you learned writing technique.
Here is a blogging for business statistic that can not be ignored: Businesses that blog generate 126% more leads and subscribers.
Um, that is a bit crazy, right?! But why? Great question. Here are my top five reasons your business should be blogging:
1. Search Engine Optimization
There are a few ways blogging helps your SEO. The first one is that when your website is updated regularly it allows Google to see your site as a viable business. Active businesses on Google are crawled more often and appear to be a more reliable source.
Each time you blog you have another page that can be indexed by google. Which simply means that every time you have a new updated page on your website it is a cue to Google to take a look. According to TechCient, “Websites with blog content have 434% more search engine indexed pages than those that don’t publish.” Whoa!
Another way blogging for business helps with SEO is the time people spend on your website. Search engines take into consideration the time a user spends perusing your site. The more interesting content there is to read, the more time a user hangs out, which in turn helps your analytics.
Also, when you are blogging, be sure to use long-tail keywords (keyword phrases) thoughtfully and often. When you do this, it allows internet searchers who are inputting your keywords into a search bar the ability to find you. Be sure to include your keywords in your URL, blog post title, headings, subheadings, in your copy, meta tag descriptions, image title and alt text.
2. Makes you an expert in your field
When you are blogging for business consistently in your area of expertise you are posing yourself as an authority on that subject.
Think about it—you go online searching for a new hairstyle. You are thinking about going for a pixie cut, but you haven’t had your hair cut by a proper hairstylist in forever. Friends of yours get their hair done, but they all have long hair or bob cuts and you want to go short. You start searching for cuts online and find someone in your area who has written blog posts about this very topic and you can see her work. You then head to her Instagram and see other haircuts she has done. Maybe you check out her Facebook business page.
Do you see where I am going? All of this can be accomplished by one organic Google search. As a customer, would you choose a hairdresser that has thoughtfully added information online versus another who has a static website? Probably not. Not to mention that you would probably not find the other hairdressers website because it is stagnant and Google is not recognizing it!
This scenario can be true in almost any field. I am using a hairstylist because it was the first thing that came to mind, but you get the picture.
3. Gives You Content For Social Media
Does thinking of content for your social media seem daunting sometimes. Tell me about it! It is no easy task to come up with a beautiful image and engaging content on a regular basis. Repurposing your blog posts can give you content for days—literally.
Think about the hairstylist example above. You have written your article based on the long-tail keyword “hairstyle for short hair.” You include pictures in your blog post of a few of your clients whose hair you have recently cut short. Maybe one of them gave you a quote about how much they loved their new style and would only trust you to cut their hair short.
You can take this one blog post and reuse it several different ways. For example, you could:
- Create a Facebook post linking back to blog post
- Post a picture on Instagram of one of the new haircuts on Instagram
- Tweet that pixie cuts are your speciality and link your blog post
- Create an Instastory of the actual haircutting process
- Use an app to create a graphic of one of the quotes from your clients and post to various social media platforms
- If you are really bold, you go live (Does this make you as nervous as it makes me? Well, we both need to get over it. Live video gains you all types of priority on Facebook, not to mention the benefits of live on Instagram)
And these are just a few ideas of how to repurpose one blog post into several social media posts.
Keep in mind, the more evergreen content (content that is not time-sensitive) you write, the more it can be repurposed later.
4. Helps make searchers into clients
Think about when you search for something online. What would you type in? These are the type of keywords you want to use in your blog. Doing this will help potential customers find your business without them having to search specifically for your business name.
When you write blogs using long-tail keywords searchers are more easily able to find you.
There are a few ways to find out what long-tail keywords to use, such as Google Adwords, but the easiest way is to go to google.com and start typing in a phrase. Think about what your customer would be typing in the search bar. Let’s say you are a hairdresser who wants to attract new customers and are looking for blog ideas. In the picture below I started to type “hairstyle for.” When I do this Google gives me a list of suggestions. You can use these suggestions for your blog topics and insert the long-tail keywords several times into your blog post.
ROI (return on investment) is a term that I have heard thrown around a lot lately, but I just heard on a podcast ROO (return on opportunity), which I think is equally important. When you blog, you might not see an immediate return on investment, such as gaining a client at the time of posting. In all actuality you will most likely not see an immediate reaction. Blogging is something you do for the long race.
However, even if you do not see immediate return think about your return on opportunity. You do not know which client will be searching for your keywords in future. which then makes the customer check out your website. But if you do not publish your post they may never find you. Even as I was writing this blog I had someone call me on a piece of content that I wrote months ago.
One quote that reaffirms my belief in ROO is one I read on HubSpot …”about 90% of the leads we generate every month come from blog posts that were published in previous months. Sometimes years ago.” This means that content you are creating today can generate leads tomorrow.