Good content marketing requires, well, lots of good content. And one of the more popular forms of content for businesses to create on a regular basis are blogs.
But why? After all, having a blog requires quite a bit of investment for your organization. You need to make sure that your website is set up for it. You need to have someone on your team allocate time from their week to research, craft, and publish timely content. Otherwise, you need to outsource it and pay someone to create blog content for you.
Is it really worth it? In a word, yes.
Here are four reasons why blogging is essential for marketing.
1. Blogging Establishes Your Expertise as a Thought Leader.
People do business with brands and organizations that they trust. What’s more is that people trust the written word, particularly when language is well crafted and presented on a functionally beautiful website.
After all, there is a reason that the warning not to trust everything you read on the internet is evergreen. It’s because, by and large, people tend to trust what they read on the internet. But this isn’t an opportunity to take advantage of anybody. Quite the opposite. It’s just an opportunity to step into a space where you already have a measure of trust and speak authoritatively about what you know best.
If you can create trustworthy and helpful content on a regular basis, people will begin to associate your organization with expertise in your given industry. They will look to you for guidance.
You can use your blog to explain why your company does things a certain way. After a while, your organization will go from being a brand that appears to follow trends to one that actually sets them. If your blog is insightful enough, it can actually be a catalyzing force for not only gaining influence within your industry but actually helping to shape the industry’s future.
2. Blogging Keeps Your Audience Engaged With Valuable Content.
Leading content marketers find ways to keep their audience continually engaged by providing high value content on regular intervals. Blogs are one key way to do that. If your organization did nothing more than publish one or two relevant and insightful blog posts a week and email them out to your subscriber list, then you will have created a solid content marketing plan.
Furthermore, blog posts are a type of content that begets more content. And that’s because you can mine them for smaller pieces of content that can be shared on social media across a variety of posts. (Learn more about how to do that here.)
Regular content that adds value will keep you top-of-mind for your audience until there arises an occasion in their lives or the life of their organization where they have use for your paid services or products. Highly engaged audience members are also easier to convert when you make a sales push for a particular launch, upgrade, or time-limited opportunity.
3. Blogging Helps You Win SEO.
One key way that people discover new brands and products is by searching Google with a specific keyword or question that they are seeking to solve. When it comes to the questions your organization can answer and the specific challenges you help people solve for, you want to appear on the first page of search results.
Releasing blog posts on a regular basis that employ best practices for search engine optimization (SEO) enable you the opportunity to begin winning some of those coveted positions on the first page of Google results. Where the services and products your organization provides match with a particular search term or question, winning SEO can be incredibly valuable for your organization. In many ways, good SEO can become a passive marketing strategy that continues to pay dividends for years without any added effort.
Nevertheless, SEO is a bit of an art as well as science, so it isn’t the easiest thing in the world to win every search term that’s relevant to your organization. That being said, every blog post is another chance to climb the ranks of Google and get your organization before the eyes of people who are looking for the types of solutions that your organization offers.
4. Blogging Provide Space to Feature Products, Resources, or Valuable Partners.
The blog space on your website is also an excellent place to feature new product releases, service packages, or the expertise of a valued partner of your organization.
You will want to do this sparingly. If your blog page becomes a running ad campaign for the various paid services your organization offers, then people will quickly disengage. However, there are times when you can leverage your blog to discuss at length why your organization is providing a particular offering, the vision and philosophy behind it, and how you think it will benefit your audience. One great example is Pro Church Tool’s announcement for their new church giving platform, which you can read here.
You can also use this space to highlight the expertise of a person or organization that your organization regularly partners with. Guest writers are often excited to gain increased exposure, particularly if you have built a large and engaged audience. And so long as the content doesn’t become too salesy, it can provide valuable insights to your audience that they might not have discovered otherwise.
The Best Time to Start is Now.
Since blogging can be such a valuable aspect of your overall marketing strategy, it’s advisable to begin investing some time and resources in it. If your organization doesn’t already have a blog, develop a strategy to get one off the ground. Decide who will write blog posts and how often, and outline a content calendar with the various topics you wish to cover.
If your organization already has a blog page on your website but is inconsistent in posting, commit to a regular schedule. Depending on your bandwidth, that schedule may range from once a month to once or twice a week. Obviously, the more content the better, but quality is even more paramount.
And if your organization blogs regularly, take a look at how you can improve your SEO strategy to increase the potential impact of your blog posts.
While blogging may seem like a significant investment of marketing resources, it is a strategy that can benefit your organization greatly.