We recently examined what makes inbound marketing so "expensive." One of the price affecting factors we discussed was blogging (also called Content Marketing) and all of the time (a lot) and effort (even more) that go into successful blogging. If you're still wondering why you're paying "so much" for someone to research a topic then write up what they find, allow us to explain what you're really paying for.
Why You Need to be Blogging
Before we jump in and start justifying the amount you're paying for someone to blog for you, let's first discuss why you should even be blogging in the first place. For B2B companies, over 70% of buying decisions are made prior to ever contacting a company. Did you read that? Did you really, really read that? Over 70% of buying decisions are made prior to ever contacting a company.
That statistic highlights what we in the marketing biz call the Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT). The ZMOT is the exact moment when a customer goes online to have a question answered and makes a buying decision. So think, if people are going online to find answers, isn't it of the utmost importance that you're there to give them the answers they're looking for? If you aren't there on the frontlines of their search results with relevant information — if you aren't there in the ZMOT — your company might as well not exist in the consumer's mind. This is exactly where blogging comes in. Let's continue...
Blogging Allows You To:
Improve your Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
At the very minimum, a maintained blog gives your website more opportunities to be seen by Google, rank for both regular and long-tail keywords, and use inbound links. Frequent blogging also gives you plenty of content to share on social media, meaning that there will also be outside links pointing to your site. All of these factors can help you gain and maintain a high position in Google's search results so that people are more likely to come across and click on your website.
Personify your company and your brand
Digging a little deeper, blogging at regular intervals (weekly, monthly, 2 posts a month, etc.) gives your company a voice and a chance to share your brand's story. This is a great way for people to get to know your brand, and if they feel like they know you they're more likely to remember you, trust you, and choose you over the competition.
Establish yourself as an expert
As you continue posting and your blog grows, you have the opportunity to start being seen as an expert in whichever field or industry you're working. Regular posting will force you stay current as you are constantly faced with the challenge of discussing relevant, popular, and new topics; this will not only keep your company and your website fresh, but give your audience an ever-growing resource to count on and trust.
Directly address and engage with your audience
Inbound marketing ditches the cold-calling-and-hard-sales approach and instead focuses on providing information for the customer before they know they want it. If you anticipate the questions, concerns, and curiosities your audience may have, you can address everything ahead of time so that it will be your expert responses they see when they set out to get answers. And not only will you be providing the information your audience wants and needs, but your blog will facilitate engagement either directly on your site in your comments section or on your social media accounts where you post links to your blog.
Build your email list, generate leads, and increase conversions
When it all comes down to it, when you pay for blogging, you're paying for the chance to build your email list, discover new leads, and convert those leads to customers. If your blog provides the information that your audience is looking for, odds are good that they will opt in to get your emails. People are willing to give out information for highly valuable content, and if they're giving you their contact information, they are giving you permission to market directly to them! This gives you interested, quality leads. You can nurture these leads by providing any missing information or customer service which may have not been present and hopefully convert those leads into customers!
So yes, while on the outside it seems like you're just shelling out your hard-earned money for someone to write a couple things for you, you're actually paying to get results which make you even more money. If you do not currently have a blogging strategy in place, we hope this inspired you to more seriously consider it as part of your marketing plan. When you're ready to discuss how inbound marketing can help your business, give us a call at (864) 288-6162 or contact us online; we'd love to help you succeed!