There is plenty of content marketing and blogging advice out there… content is king, write less, write more, keep your sentences short and to the point, use lots of bullet points since readers skim, use bold for emphasis, add visuals… it goes on and on. Marketing data shows that blogging, even if it’s not part of a larger digital marketing strategy, definitely brings better business results. According to Hubspot’s recent Benchmarks report, companies that blog 6 -8 times per month double their lead volume. This proves that blogging is a highly effective channel for lead generation.
Between brand awareness, SEO, lead generation, and building authority and thought leadership, there are very few areas of B2B marketing that don’t benefit from blogging. So, how do you create a blog that’s engaging, relevant, and valuable, that speaks to your potential customers and clients, and makes them, read, consider, and most importantly take action? It’s time to turn your blog into a lead generation machine. Let’s take a look at 8 important facts to effective blogging in 2017:
- Businesses that blog consistently get 67% more leads than those that do not. Blogs are considered one of the most trusted and credible sources of accurate and valuable information on the web. Higher blog frequency, on a regular, dependable basis, is much more effective than businesses who blog “when they can get around to it.”
- 43% of readers say they skim blog posts, so it’s important to make your blog stand out and speak to your potential clients. Visual content is in high demand. Incorporate headers, graphics, charts, images, video, and other visual tools into your blog posts. Visual content is more engaging than text alone and blog posts with images get 94% more views.
- As blogging becomes more competitive, longer blogs tend to perform much better in the search engines. The average word count in top ranking blogs, today, has grown to between 1200 – 1500 words. Google favors in-depth, dense content that provides a ton of valuable and relevant information to its audience. This helps the search engines recognize that your site is a strong resource with content that visitors want to read and provides value.
- Websites with blogs tend to have almost 500% more indexed pages than sites without a blog. Google gives precedence to websites that are continually updating and adding content and a blog is a great way to keep your site fresh and relevant. This helps the search engines recognize that your website is a strong resource. SEO MATTERS. High quality blogs that are optimized and keyword focused will help you get found by your target audience and will keep them coming back to your website for additional insight and information. A company blog has more long-term return on investment than traditional, outbound marketing efforts. Blogs are 63% more likely to influence purchase decisions than print ads. SEO leads have a 15% close rate. Outbound leads, like print advertising and direct mail, have less than a 2% close rate.
- Businesses who blog receive 97% more natural links to their website than companies who don’t blog. If you write valuable, useful content, businesses and thought-leaders will link to it and share it with their connections and followers. Attracting links from authoritative, high-quality sites is much easier when your blog posts are deemed relevant. As an added benefit, your entire website reaps the SEO, link building benefits.
- An "organic strategy only" is becoming a thing of the past. Bloggers are increasingly using paid promotional techniques, especially via the social networks, to drive relevant traffic to their blog posts. Paid promotions have increased over 90% during the past year alone, and are proven to get more eyes on your blog content in a short amount of time. Blog posts that were shared on Twitter and Facebook got 149% more inbound links than those not shared on social media at all. The good news is that budgets are under your control and you won’t overspend for impressions. The better news is that the social platforms do a great job of delivering your paid post to the most relevant, targeted audience and prospective clients.
- Almost 50% of buyers are doing their own research on the web and view 3-5 pieces of information before visiting a business or talking to a company or sales rep. Blogs can speak to your brand. Your blog should include content for every stage of your prospective buyer’s journey. Top of the funnel content should draw a potential client in, answer questions and build trust and credibility, while middle and bottom of the funnel content should start to lay the foundation of considering buying your product or service and/or working with your business.
- Don’t forget about mobile. Google gets over 100 billion searches a month and over 60% of those searches come from mobile devices (smartphones and tablets.) Visitors unable to read your blog or use your website on a mobile device are lost to your business forever. Make sure your website and blog are mobile friendly and built using responsive web design (RWD)
As content marketing has become an essential part of any inbound marketing strategy, blogging has become the powerful go-to tool to get your message out. Great business blogging allows you to build a community, reach your target audience at all phases of their buyer’s journey, and open a conversation and become a thought leader.
If you still aren’t sure blogging is right for you, here are a few additional facts and statistics to help convince you that it’s time for your business to jump on the blogging bandwagon:
- Over 25% of Internet time is spent reading blogs.
- More than 60% of U.S. online consumers say they’ve made a purchase as a direct result of reading a blogger’s recommendation.
- Blogs can assist you with the effective promotion of a service or product.
- More than 30% of marketers deem blogs to be the most valuable type of content on the Internet.
- Writing anywhere from 21 -54 blog posts can significantly boost traffic to your website by 30%.
- According to 78% of chief marketing officers, custom content will be the champion of marketing tactics in the future.
- A continually updated blog is a sign of a business that cares about their community.
- And finally…65% of daily Internet users read blogs. It could be your blog if you follow our suggestions above and make it easy for them to find it!
Located in McLean, Virginia, just minutes from Washington, DC, Bethesda, MD, and all of Northern Virginia (NoVA) we have been helping businesses locally, and across the U.S., leverage digital marketing since 2003. Our mission is to help our clients grow their revenue and brand awareness with strategies that integrate outstanding websites, valuable content, a strong social media presence, and state of the art advertising and promotion.
With industry veterans possessing over 30 years of experience in translating technology into business tools, we have the background to guide you through the process of building traffic, sites and sales through all your web properties.