Marketing data clearly shows that blogging is a critical piece of the inbound marketing methodology and directly correlates to better business results.
- Nearly 40% of US companies use blogs for marketing purposes. [Tweet this stat]
- Companies that blog have 55% more website visitors. [Tweet this stat]
- B2B companies that blog get 67% more leads/month than those that don’t. [Tweet this stat]
The facts speak for themselves. But merely blogging will not dramatically transform your marketing. Your blog has to be well-optimized, well-promoted, and most of all, rich with content.
A blog is a long-term marketing asset that will bring traffic and leads to your business. It presents your company as a thought leader in your industry and allows you to earn the trust of potential prospects who find your articles useful in their research online. Blogging offers many benefits to improving your marketing.
First, business blogging improves search engine optimization (SEO). The more blog posts you publish, the more indexed pages you create that search engines display in their results. In other words, business blogging helps you rank in search engines, and those pages get found when people search for industry-specific products or services. Thus, the blog enables you to attract organic traffic and familiarize people with your business.
How frequently you blog also plays an important role in the amount of traffic to your website. In fact, our research, “Marketing Benchmarks from 7000 Businesses,” shows that companies that blog 15 or more times in a month see the biggest return in traffic and leads.
Optimize Your Posts
Another essential element of attracting more traffic through organic search is optimizing your blog posts. Make sure your blog titles incorporate industry keywords that people enter into their search engine queries when they conduct research.
But don’t get hung up on what keywords to use. Google’s new Hummingbird algorithm is much better at matching its search results to the intent of the user’s query, instead of just returning pages that match a few keywords. So write for humans, not for search engines.
Build Thought Leadership
Second, your blog is an asset that positions you as a thought leader. So if you have some industry-specific information to share, a blog will help you earn people’s trust and stay top-of-mind for many in your community.
Use your blog as a platform to showcase your expertise on a given subject. Inject your knowledge of the industry into your blog posts, and make a clear distinction between your brand and your competition.
Be a Problem Solver
Name the biggest problem your customers have. With that problem in mind, write a detailed blog post that provides practical and non-product focused solutions. Solve your customers’ problems with your insightful and informative articles.
Convert Website Visitors into Leads
Third, since you are attracting website visitors with all your remarkable content, your blog is valuable real estate to place calls-to-action in order to generate leads. At this stage of the game, you are trying to retain your blog readers and engage them further with your website and your content. So you might ask them to attend your webinar or download a free guide that you have. Calls-to-action introduce your prospects into the buying process so that you can start to qualify them.
CTA’s in Sidebar
One possible placement of calls-to-action is the sidebar of your blog. You can create banners to advertise some of your top performing offers and add them around your blog for visitors to click on.
CTA’s in Blog Posts
You can place calls-to-action within the blog post itself, at the beginning, middle or end of the article. Also, don’t forget to create contextual calls-to-action, by hyperlinking keywords to appropriate offers that you have.
Business blogging is a central element of your inbound marketing strategy to drive traffic and convert leads. Successful businesses are reaping the benefits of this valuable marketing channel.