79% of companies who have a blog reported a positive return on investment for inbound marketing in 2013, compared with just 20% of ‘blogless’ companies.
82% of marketers who blogged on a daily basis acquired a customer using their blog, as opposed to 57% of marketers who blogged only monthly.
43% of marketers have generated a customer via their blog this year.
HubSpot customers who produced more than 15 blog posts a month generated an average of 1,200 new leads each month!
The real benefit of blogging as part of your content marketing strategy is its potentially limitless shelf-life. It’s true that you might not receive the same instant gratification for your efforts as you would perhaps, for a presentation or trade show, where you can gauge immediate feedback and opinion. However, unlike these one-off marketing events, blogs can generate hits (and, by extension, sales), months or even years after they are created.
Blogging has also proven to be an extremely cost-effective means of corporate promotion, requiring roughly 9% of a marketers’ total full-time staff dedication and just 7% of their total budget. This means that marketers spend 55% more time than budget on blogging.
In order for your blog to work as a timeless draw for traffic to your website, it’s important to understand that you need your blog posts to remain indexed in Google for as long as possible, and that you need to be creating original, well-researched and topical content. This means ensuring that you consider the following in your content strategy:
SEO – Think about the terms and keywords that you would use to search for similar content, and be sure to include these in the body and headers of your copy.
Topicality – Be aware of trending subjects and write to reflect current hot topics which are going to generate new traffic to your site.
Expertise – If your content lacks direction and authority, chances are people won’t be too interested in what you have to say. It’s much better to sell yourself as an expert in a single field - and to generate a loyal following this way - than to try and blog about everything and anything that happens to interest you.
Research – Unlike a personal blog, which is much more likely to be opinion-led and editorial, a corporate blog is a means of demonstrating your company’s prowess in their field. Keep upto date with, and analyse, the latest research, studies and developments in your industry, and be sure to demonstrate your cutting-edge knowledge of the marketplace.
Inspire interaction – Remember the share-potential of what you write; inspire people to post links to your blog and interact with your content. Include ebooks, videos, animations, polls and newsworthy articles. Encourage your customers to share your ideas and grow your network.
When you are tasked with writing a blog post in 2014, don’t think of it as a thankless marketing exercise in box-ticking, but consider its potential to drive traffic and new customers to your site. Think of a blog as a means of demonstrating your market-leading expertise, and challenge your audience to think and interact with what you have to say.