Oh, and this one.
They’re all good. They all make very valid points about brand content, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), audience engagement and authoritative reputation.
But I wanted to break it down quite simply, by using my own experience of blogging and comparing it to that other Brand Voice beast that clients will often be gagging to engage in - Social Media Marketing.
Blogging for Business
So my blog has been running for exactly two years on Saturday (Happy Blog Birthday To Me!)
In the beginning I blogged more frequently (back then it was a few times a week) but the posts were shorter. In the last year I reduced this to one post per week, of a longer length, with more detail, more images (appropriately tagged for Google search referencing) and more varied in topic and theme. My publication rates are lower, yet my visitor numbers are higher.
It’s because my social media following is growing, I hear you cry!
Content Marketing v Social Media Marketing
At the time of writing I have a total Social Media following of (drum roll please…)
- Twitter (my favourite channel) = 1,274 Followers
- Facebook Page = 140 Likes
- Linked In = 460 Connections
- Instagram = 229 Followers
Now I’m not saying these are fantastic figures, but then I don’t market them to be. All of them are my personal profiles, except Facebook, where I intelligently have a personal profile on LOCK-DOWN and the page is simply posting from my blog items. However, I do promote blog posts regularly on these channels, including numerous links to the last post - to catch different audiences - as well as posting links to what I was writing about the year before (known as ‘recycling brand content’).
The daily Google Search referrers to my blog ALWAYS outnumber those who follow me on Social Media, by an average of 10-to-1.
Blogging for SEO
So Twitter will bring me one reader, Google will bring me 10.
Added to this, I may only blog once a week, but I welcome new readers every day.
Anywhere between 20 and 100 visitors a day will arrive because they were searching for content I had written about. And Google was showing them my website within the first few results, because I’ve proved I know a bit about what I’m talking about and because I helped Google to know that by accurately logging and tagging my work.
I think that’s pretty impressive for a blog that is very niche, in terms of the topic but even more so, because it focuses on our tiny little part of the world. A world in which readers are arriving from all over it.
Blogging Return on Investment
So while I agree that blogging has lots of benefits for a brand/company, including giving you a voice and personality, creating content for your brand channels, positioning you as an expert in your field and growing an audience of engaged brand advocates…
The fact remains that if you are selling a product or service, if you’re campaigning to change attitudes or you’re promoting something to increase public awareness, a consistently-published library of well-written, technically-linked branded blog posts will be doing this work for you even while you’re not working. It will bring people to your website or your social media channels or wherever it is you have linked them to arrive, and then if you have put the work in to create a high-value piece of content, they may stick around to find out more. Or contact you. As they often do me.
I can do that for you by the way.
Write the good content.