To Blog Or Not To Blog - That Is The Question (With Apologies To Hamlet)
Studies have shown that over 30% of consumers claim that reading a trusted blog influences their purchases. Over 140 million people read business blogs each year in the United States alone. But there is no question that successful small business blogging takes time and dedication.
Finding a good writer and deciding what to write about. Knowing how often to write. These are just some of the challenges that put many business owners off the idea. They also often see blogging as something for lifestyle and social media audiences only.
However you should view your business blog as another marketing channel. In other words, treat it like social media, direct mail and email marketing. If you put the same effort into a blog as you put into these methods, there are several significant benefits for the small business owner.
Blogging Is A Cheap Way To Get New Customers
A survey of business executives by Hubspot showed that business owners who use direct mail, pay-per-click advertising (PPC) and telemarketing incur average lead costs of about USD 373 (AUD 530).
In contrast, business owners using blogs to generate their leads average about USD $143 (AUD 200) cost per lead. There is no reason to believe that these statistics do not hold good for Australian businesses also.
Regardless of your size, you can build trust and a reputation within your industry by providing valuable, expert information in your blog posts. Gradually you will become a “go to” resource for useful informative content. This can ultimately lead to higher customer conversion rates.
It is also important for your credibility when competing with larger companies.
You Can Increase Website Traffic And Subscribers With A Blog
Small business blogging gives you the opportunity to create relevant content for your customers. You can use this as a marketing tactic to drive traffic back to your website.
Start by making your website blog the foundation for all your social media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter. By linking your blog articles to your social sites you give your social followers a reason to click through to your website.
You can also insert inbound links directly into your blog articles. This tactic can drive traffic to specific landing pages on your website.
Regular blogging has the capacity to increase the traffic to your website. This will increase page views and hits as your business get more exposure.
A Blog Will Increase Sales
The previous point showed how you can use a blog to get people to your site. Once having got them there, if your blog content is valuable and informative, they will stay around. If they stay around long enough, sooner or later they will become customers.
To quote Marcus Sheriden of The Sales Lion:
“If you hang around the barbershop long enough, you’re going to get your hair cut.”
A Blog Will Build Brand Recognition
Small business blogging is an inexpensive way to get people to notice your brand online.
If you create a company blog that provides value to other businesses in your industry, other blogs and websites will soon link to you. They will share your content on social media networks and this will provide excellent exposure for your brand.
Blog posting also allows you to show a side of your business that prospective and current customers won’t see through other marketing techniques. It will give people a sense of the corporate standards, vision, and personality of your company.
A Blog Will Help Improve Your SEO
Fresh content is still an important factor in achieving a good search engine ranking.
There is often very little change to static page content once you finish and launch your website. Regular blog articles by their nature help overcome this problem.
If your articles contain keywords that you wish to rank for, Google and other search engines will find your site when people search for these words.
While the idea of small business blogging may seem daunting, there is no doubting the benefits – i.e.
- New customers at less cost
- Increased website traffic
- Increased sales
- Better brand recognition
- Improved SEO
Time For Action!
Don’t have a blog but would like to start one? We can help with all aspects, including content creation and posting to social media.
Give us a call today, we’re always happy to talk.
Michael is the founder and principal of Media Dreams, and is a former partner in a public accounting practice. He has a working lifetime of advising small business owners and has owned several himself.