While podcasts get all the press, blogs are quietly delivering on targeted marketing goals.
And here’s the proof. Businesses that blog get 55% more visitors to their website than their non-blogging competition, according to research by HubSpot. Those visitors can then become customers thanks to sales and marketing efforts. They can also make purchases based on the compelling content on your blog.
Plenty of businesses turn to blogging to create an impact on everything from sales to brand building. Tyson Foods, for example, uses thefeed.blog to share important behind-the-scenes stories of their business, from diversity and inclusion efforts to sustainability in their factories. By using a blog on a custom domain, the Tyson Foods team is able to connect directly with consumers in an authentic way. You can read more about them, in this article we posted earlier this month.
Build Your Brand’s Voice
In marketing, authenticity matters. Each business has a brand voice ー one that conveys the company’s message to consumers in a unique way.
How do you define your own brand’s voice? Here’s a helpful chart:
Think of your business as a person; if they were a person, who would they be? How would they talk? What would they like? This is a great exercise for all businesses, but it’s even more important when you are setting out on your blogging journey. You want your readers to know what to expect when they come to your blog, which in turn helps you to build authority in your particular industry or niche.
Another way to build authority through your brand voice is to conduct research on what consumers are searching for when it comes to the product or service you sell. Websites like AnswerThePublic are free tools that allow you to determine the questions people are asking about your industry or niche ー use it as the basis of your blogging strategy. If you are writing blogs in your own authentic voice and you are answering the questions that real people are asking, having a blog will pay off for you.
Through blogging, you can refine this voice to be the most authentic version of your brand possible. Customers will instantly know what company has written content they find online. That’s the power of brand building through blogging.
Connect to Your Audience
Notice how we refer to “audience” and not “customers”? Yes, blogs are a fantastic way to stay in touch with your existing customers, but their real power lies in helping you reach a much wider audience.
In the example of Tyson Foods, their custom blog thefeed.blog, allows them to have a less formal voice than on their corporate site, which opens them up to new audiences that might not normally have connected with their message.
By blogging, you are creating a way to establish direct contact with your target markets and personas, while building trust. Stephen R. Covey, the author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, wrote, “When the trust account is high, communication is easy, instant, and effective.” Don’t get us wrong: it takes time to build trust, just like it does in any relationship. But if you are blogging consistently and providing high-value content (meaning you are not constantly selling to readers, but are providing them with information), the trust will build. Through building trust, you are establishing yourself as a company that customers will want to do business with ー and they’ll think of you first when the time comes for them to make a purchase.
As we mentioned earlier, businesses that blog receive 55% more traffic to their websites than those that don’t. Even more mind-boggling is the 97% more inbound links that businesses that blog have and the 434% more indexed pages.
If you’re not fluent in search engine optimization (SEO), here’s what this means for you:
First, the simple act of blogging means you are creating a new page on your website. When you create a new page, it gives Google (and other search engines) another reason to index your website. It also demonstrates to Google that your website is active and that it should be crawling your site more frequently to check for new content to index. All of this equates to your website appearing more frequently on the search engine results page.
Second, the more quality content you create on your blog, the better chance you have of getting the all-important backlinks (or inbound links) from other websites. Backlinks are one of several criteria that Google uses when determining where to show a page in search results. If it finds that one of your blog posts has been linked to multiple times from other websites, it demonstrates that it is an important post that people want to read and it will rank higher. This is why it’s imperative to write content that people want to read and share.
Finally, using the keywords and key phrases that your target audience is already searching for is another way to organically increase website traffic. Perform keyword research prior to writing each blog and determine the 2-3 phrases you’d like to focus on ー then use them to optimize your content. Keep in mind that you don’t want to “keyword stuff”, which is when you use your keywords over and over in an effort to trick the Google crawlers. Google knows what you’re doing and they will tank your rankings. Instead, write with your brand voice in mind and keep it natural ー like you’re speaking to someone in person.
Providing Evergreen Content for Other Channels
If you are at a loss for creating engaging social media content, having a blog is a built-in way to create evergreen content (that is, content that can be used over and over and does not have a “best before date”).
But it’s not just your social media accounts that will benefit from your blogging content: you can use blogs in your marketing emails, in your customer account portals, and even as part of your paid advertising strategy.
Repurpose your content. Use blogs to create infographics, as the basis for podcasts, or to pitch your expertise to news outlets (which could lead to even more backlinks).
The possibilities for sharing and repurposing your blog content are practically endless.
Why Businesses Should Blog
Blogging is a great way to build authority in your niche and attract potential customers, but it’s also a fantastic way to share who you are in a real, authentic way. If you are intrigued by blogging, make 2022 the year you add it to your strategy. By using a .blog domain name, you’ll stand out even more.