At one point or another your boss may ask you about the purpose of the company blog of which you’re so proud. The question might be similar to the one my boss asked me a few weeks back: “Hey Pawel, I appreciate the quality of your writing, but it seems that everyone is blogging now. Isn’t it just a fad? Tell me, why do we need the company blog again?” Let me help you answer these questions.
Blogging is a rather obvious marketing tool these days, but some non-digital marketing managers may not be sure if it’s not just a matter of hype, pointless and short-lived. Given it’s hard to think of content marketing without a blog, every content marketer must be ready to provide the boss with concise and compelling proof. Let’s face it, the security of your job may rely on answering questions about the blog’s significance. Here are 5 ready-made answers.
1. A blog shows the company’s expertise
As Seth Godin put it more than a decade ago, the days of interruption marketing are counted. Companies need to focus on permission marketing, which boils down to crafting ads without promotional angle. There’s a variety of options on how to adapt this idea and one of the most powerful is constantly showing how much expertise your company has. If you adhere to this tactic, there’s no doubt your would-be clients will permit your messages.
But isn’t sharing your expertise a bit tricky, given someone may steal your ideas? Showing that you are an expert doesn’t mean sharing any real insight to your strategy. What you should focus on is in fact a generally accessible knowledge. The point is to prove that no one is more knowledgable than you and that no one conveys that knowledge in a more intelligible and entertaining way. Oh, and by the way, it’s not a crime to borrow ideas from others. Every great writer does that.
2. A blog enhances your other social channels
It feels alright to have fans flocking to your Facebook page, right? I don’t think there’s a boss in the world that won’t appreciate tons of likes. The thing is that fans are basically useless if you acquire them mainly with pictures of cute kittens. A company Facebook page requires a quality likes-earning content. It can be text updates, it can be images, or videos and it can be links to articles. Obviously, you may link to content made by anyone, but it’s much more reasonable to craft and promote your own work.
Think of a really interesting story you found that’s related to your business, but was published by someone else, say a well-known industry pundit. If you have your own blog, usually you can write a similar story with your own voice. Then you can link on Facebook to your post instead of the pundit’s.
Providing valuable content for your social channels is one of the main reasons behind focusing on your blog. Investing in social media without having your own quality articles is rather pointless.
3. Strengthen the relations with your customers via blog
Your existing clients are precious, hence you need to find a way to nurture them and provide them with proof that their choice of you, was right. The excellence of your service alone might serve well in terms of that purpose, but your competition may come up with something perhaps a bit less excellent, but cheaper. How to encourage your clients to stay with you, or pay you even more for some additional services? Of course, it can be achieved with blog content.
As Jay Baer writes in his recent book Youtility, contemporary marketing shouldn’t focus on selling, but on helping. With this idea in mind, you can utilize your blog as a perfect way to strengthen relations with your existing clients by offering them helpful resources for free. Think of “how to” guides that solve your clients’ problems, or provide them with answers how to make the most of your services. You may also focus on client success story posts that prove there are more people who chose you and feel great about it.
4. A blog is the cheapest way to acquire prospects via search engine
Running a regularly updated company blog is an easy way to score completely free visits via Google. I am sure that you’re acutely aware of that, but your results may not be satisfying enough to provide Google as a blog-existing proof just yet. Ways to beef them up are quite simple, though.
You don’t have to invest in AdWords and SEO at all. First take some time to analyze keyword popularity in order to carefully choose what to write about. Then, just try to craft your articles having in mind those Google-driven visitors. Let them find what they’re looking for. Also, claim Google Authorship image in search results, so your search-optimized work can leap out. If your industry isn’t brimming with content yet, the results will come soon. Otherwise, you might need to wait a bit longer, but the success is inevitable.
5. Blogging is a perfect way to hone your skills as an expert
Last but not least, blogging is a perfect way of self-reflection and self-education. By teaching others, your company teaches itself and eventually acquire a much higher level of expertise than without blogging. Of course, it’s not just about you, the company blogger, but it’s about every blog contributor and every employee, including the board members. Blogging about industry-related issues may become a source of new ideas inside the company. They may refer to new services, or just improvements. They may also facilitate employees the task of providing support to your existing customers, as well as answering offer requests from prospects. All it needs is quality, relevant and helpful content.
Writing for a blog is a demanding process in which all employees are educated about topics that the company finds important. It’s good to own a space where some company members write, while others read and it is beneficial to both sides.
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