Each year, it seems, everyone says “Oh, blogging is dead. People have switched to [insert trendy platform here].”
Yet year after year, without fail, blogs continue to drive readers to company sites and convert those readers into paying customers. So why can’t we just shake these darn blogs and move to holographic iPhone messaging?
In short, blogging just works.
Custom organic writing is something that other mediums simply cannot compete with, no matter how hard they try. Now, this isn’t to say that your brand doesn’t require a social media presence and robust videos or other medium that speak to your audience particularly. It does. But blogging is about more than having shareable little quotes and photos.
Here are 9 compelling reasons why your business needs a blog in 2020:
1. Get Local Rankings Organically
Google has stepped up its services in catering to sites that it “thinks” users want to see when they enter a search query. Unfortunately, the way that they do this employs throwing paid ads into the mix when someone performs a search for keywords related to your brand.
This is especially troublesome for small businesses who are looking to grab customers from their local communities. If you own a pizza shop, feed supply store, or provide tutoring services for high school students, you’re going to get outranked by big budget brands, like Pizza Hut, Tractor Supply or Kumon.
Unless, of course, you have timely, relevant content that gives your site something your big-name competitors don’t have: personality. Your hopes of appearing in local searches aren’t completely dashed, but you’ve got to keep up with regular posts that incorporate the words your clients are using alongside keywords you’ve researched.
2. Set Yourself Up as An Expert
When you blog on your business site, you can set yourself up as an expert in your field. Own a contracting company? Start a blog with posts about design trends, safety tips for pets during a renovation project, and fun party tips for using a new deck.
Whatever your industry, you can share blog posts with updates after industry conferences or ones discussing new trends that impact your customers’ purchasing choices. Use your blog to transcribe recorded interviews with other professionals in your industry and let your blog become a meeting place for fans and other industry members.
Above all, genuinely help your readers by giving away some of your expert knowledge. It’ll come back around to benefit your business in trust, referrals, and continued engagement.
3. Create New Sales Funnels
Your blog is yours. That means you can make it into a profitable sales funnel (or two, or three) to your various products.
Frequent, helpful blog posts with well-crafted calls to action (CTAs) can push casual readers to subscribe to your email list, contact you for a consultation, or even purchase a product if it fits into the theme of your blog.
You can (and should) also take advantage of your blog sidebar, header, and footer to ensure that relevant opt-in forms are always available for readers who want to dig more deeply into what your brand has to offer. There’s nothing more frustrating for a dedicated reader than a hard-to-find subscribe form.
4. Fill Your Social Media Calendar
Is your business on social media? Are you always looking for new content to post?
Blog posts are social media gold when it comes to filling your social media calendar. Not only can you link to posts and drive your social media audience directly to your website, but you can use quotes, pictures, or screenshots from your post to engage your audience on the social media platforms you use.
If your blog has a sales funnel you can turn social media reach into sales by inviting your followers to read more on your website.
Write blog posts with your social media audience in mind and you’ll never have trouble posting relevant info for your followers again.
5. Boost Your SEO
When it comes to things you do on your website—including blogging and affixing niche edits—there’s always going to be some impact to your SEO rankings. Adding a company blog, or resurrecting an old one, can positively impact your SEO score.
First, a blog enables you to write posts that rank your site for certain keywords. Going back to our example of your contracting company, let’s assume that you specialize in basement work and deck builds. Your site might already rank for keywords like “deck”, “patio”, “finished basement”, etc.
But adding blog posts with “tips for outdoor entertainment” or “best washers for a basement laundry room” allows you to optimize your site for different keywords that attract different audiences. If someone looking for outdoor entertainment ideas is already thinking that a new deck would enhance their home’s entertainment space, they might be compelled to contact you to learn more about your deck building services.
A blog also helps you to have more content for bots to crawl, more links to post elsewhere online (backlinks are an important part of your SEO strategy), a place for pictures, and so forth. Your blog can be a veritable gold mine for climbing the search engine rankings.
6. Get to Know Your Audience Better
Your blog should ideally bring new traffic to your site. With new readers come new audiences – some of which might be readers you want to convert to customers.
Engaging with your audience through your blog will increase your online reach, increase commitment to your brand, and help you get to know your audience better.
You can get to know your audience better by:
- Reading the comments on your blog and social media,
- Watching the demographic data your analytics tracking is showing you, and
- Keeping track of which personas make a purchase.
The long-term benefits of growing an audience through blog readership is that you build trust and cultivate relationships.
Building relationships through your value added content, like your blog, is a long game but it’s worth it.
7. Cultivate Content for Your Marketing Strategy
Your online marketing strategy is designed to take you from Point A (where you are) to point B (where the customers and $ are).
Content marketing is the cornerstone of any online marketing strategy. In fact, some marketers are beginning to state that content marketing now is online marketing.
A blog is still the most easily accessible form of value added content.
Use your blog to boost your content marketing by:
- Packing your posts full of long form content, multimedia, and unique insights.
- Sharing your posts on social media
- Sending relevant posts to leads when they fits their needs
- And more…
8. Start a Conversation
Your blog will certainly attract new readers who will become customers. But it’ll also attract readers who won’t ever purchase a single one of your products or services.
If you work in a research field or want to share insights from your industry, you can share posts with other readers in your field and start conversations. While your initial readers might not be customers, this method of disseminating your information furthers your expertise in your field and lets you get your name out there.
You never know how starting the conversation in your corner of the world might spark conversations and ideas that shift thinking across your industry. Plus, by starting a conversation with other people in your industry you increase opportunities to ask for backlinks to your content.
9. Let Your Voice be Heard
No matter your field, you have valuable insights to share. But if you work in the nonprofit sector, you may have a particular interest in using your blog as a platform for spreading information about your cause.
Regardless of your industry, you can always allow your blog to educate – whether you want to educate peers, customers, or classrooms.
Leverage your blog to:
- Definitively answer oft asked questions,
- Demonstrate what makes your business or nonprofit unique, and
- Teach what you know.
You can also use your blog as a vehicle for sharing important PR updates for your company or to discuss current events related to your industry or the services that you deliver.