I recently spoke with a mentor from early in my career who asked me to elaborate on the goals and objectives of blogging. What are you trying to achieve? The answer is multifaceted, which I suppose makes it difficult to assign costs to a specific campaign or budget line item. But here are some quick answers to the question, “Why Blog?”
1. Improve Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engines like high quality content, updated frequently. Blogs are the perfect area to discuss current events, and share best practices and opinions on your industry. This fresh content helps your search engine rankings and drives traffic to your site, at which point you can help move them into the funnel.
2. Boost Credibility by Demonstrating Subject Matter Expertise
Covering current news and sharing tips on your industry positions your organization as trustworthy experts. Blogging can also help boost the profile of individuals within your company, demonstrating their unique expertise as you work to earn media placements or secure speaking engagements.
And no, your Subject Matter Experts don’t have to literally write the blogs attributed to them. The use of ghost writers doesn’t diminish the value of blogging. A skilled writer can take a ‘brain dump’ via phone or email and transform it into a finished piece for review.
3. Increase Social Media Followers and Engagement
Sharing blog content is a great way to increase social media followers and boost engagement (likes, comments, retweets, etc.) Again, this allows you to connect and potentially move followers into your funnel in the future.
I wrote ‘move followers into the funnel,’ rather than through. A Twitter follower shouldn’t be considered a lead… yet.
4. Generate Leads
Which brings me to my final point. You can indeed convert blog traffic to leads by including a brief “Call to Action” in the post. “Buy our Stuff!” is not appropriate as the primary theme of a blog post. Although sometimes calls to action fit well, such as, “If you’re struggling to find widgets to build your roadrunner-catching contraptions, contact us to see if we can help.” You can also invite readers to learn more by registering for gated content such as an eBook, or signing up to attend a webinar – thereby stepping into the top of the funnel.
Did you read this post and think, “I really need to blog more often (or start blogging),”? Read my post on how to blog for tips, or contact me to see if I can help with ghost-writing services.
And yes, that photo is a roadrunner bird. I’m also unaccustomed to seeing photographs in lieu of the cartoon.