Blogging is one of MANY ways to promote your business online. Depending on what your marketing goals are, it may be something you’ll want to incorporate into your marketing plan.
Let’s start with your prospects: they’re human (duh), which means they (a) ultimately just want to know things, and (b) they crave entertainment. It’s true, humans love a good story.
Blogging creates an opportunity for you to show people what you know and what you’re about. You can share all of your impressive industry knowledge as well as your big business wins & losses (that’s right–show ‘em you’re not perfect, people appreciate a little humility from time to time). Throwing in the occasional industry rant or musing, good or bad, can create connections between you and your prospects because they see you’re a human with thoughts and emotions.
Doing all of this makes you more present in prospects’ minds, thus making them more likely to turn to you when they need something you can offer.
As people make a buying decision, they travel through a similar information-gathering pattern: first identifying their problems, then finding solutions. Eventually, they evaluate companies who can provide the solutions they need, then they call and decide to buy.
Your blog can reach prospects where they are in the buying cycle by answering the questions they have in each phase of consideration. Meeting prospects where they are both generates more traffic and earns a prospect’s trust before you even meet them.
Traditional websites only speak to visitors at the end of the buying cycle. That’s the equivalent of asking a gal to marry you on the first date. Wouldn’t it make more sense to get to know each other first? Develop a relationship and then get married?
Every time you post on your blog, you’re creating another door for people to use to enter into your website. The more you blog, the more doors you create. The more doors you create, the more people come into your website. And guess what, the more people come to your website, the more conversions you get. Mind-blowing, right??
Generating conversions all comes down to two things: getting people to your website (more traffic = more opportunities) and telling them the right things to make them buy. Back to meeting your prospects where they are. There are more people in all phases of the buying cycle than there are in just one phase, the same way there’s more people in the entire high school than there are in just the Sophomore class. Not to mention, you can nurture people through the buying phases by leading them to the next bit of important information (you know, Algebra I comes before Algebra II). So each blog is a door that can open to a person at any given phase in the buying process and lead them to the next.
Then to take it even further down the rabbit hole: if you go all out and share these posts through other online marketing platforms like social media or email marketing, you’ll have something valuable to say. And you’re not only giving people a reason to visit your site, you’re making it easier for people to find your site, in turn generating more traffic. And if by some magic those people share your posts with others, that’s even more people who will see your valuable content, which draws even MORE traffic. Can. You. IMAGINE?
So this sort of piggybacks off of what I just covered above, but basically, CONTENT IS KING.
Putting credible and useful content on your website brings more people in, and when more people are coming to your site, the Google gods start to recognize you as a legit resource. And then, when other people go online to research your industry, Google remembers you and serves your posts higher and higher on the list of search results.
Your marketing copy is written to wow and only uses a handful of key terms. While your blog content is often more conversational and pulls in traffic from longer phrases that people may be more likely to use when searching for more specific information related to their journey through the buying process. So you can rank for more key terms and that’s what SEO Is all about.
Think of it as a “Step 3: Repeat steps 1 and 2” scenario: put content out, draw people in, boost your SEO rankings. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.
While there could be some initial costs in setting up a professional blog on your website, blogging takes more time and commitment than dollars, and the nice thing is, promoting your blog is totally free through your business Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn, etc accounts.
And the “Lather, Rinse, Repeat” approach I just mentioned? After a few cycles, you’re well on your way to building an empire of knowledge and credibility that will become a well-oiled machine of its own, chugging along, serving answers to people’s questions long after you’ve provided them, making your website more and more credible.
Stretch those marketing dollars, baby.
And get this: when you DO want to spend a little dough on some online ads, the answers you give to common questions in your blog articles can also double as ad concepts to drive more traffic toward specific products and services you offer.
You might think blogging won’t do much for your existing clients, but you’d be wrong. And that’s okay, don’t feel bad. It’s a common misconception.
Think of it this way: your clients aren’t limited to only one need in their lifetimes, right? So take advantage and dish out answers to common industry questions and share them with your online followers, clients and referrals. You may find you’ve uncovered a need they didn’t know they had or didn’t know you could address.
Blogging builds relationships with clients because you’re providing them valuable information, which increases their loyalty to you and encourages them to recommend you to friends and family.
It’s crazy to think about how much blogging can really do for your business. Keep in mind though that if you’re looking for immediate turn-around with your marketing efforts, blogging isn’t the way to go. It’s something that nurtures your prospects and clients over time while building your website’s credibility online and in your industry.
Blogging takes commitment, no doubt. But it works. If you’re still unsure about whether or not you want to pursue it, take a look at these stats from Impact Branding & Design to help motivate you (SPOILER: they’re pretty convincing findings…). And if THAT isn’t enough, Writtent.com has 45 more reasons why blogging is undoubtedly effective.
Even so, we get it: taking on the task of writing for your business can feel daunting, and when you’re ready, we’ve got a great 10-week blogging plan that will get you going on the right foot.
Katie is the Online Marketing Manager at MayeCreate Design. A true people person and creative at heart, she’s the “Jane” of All Trades around the office and enjoys having her hands in ALL of the cookie jars. Her fascination with how people communicate and interact coupled with her motivation to meet clients’ social media marketing needs make for a great combination in this industry. As a wife, mom, twin, karaoke singer and rock climber, she’s seen the world from many perspectives and thrives to bring an open mind and clear vision to help develop your online marketing plan.
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