Not sure whether it’s worth your time to create and maintain a blog for your business? HubSpot’s latest survey on inbound marketing answers that question with a resounding YES.
The survey highlights the fact that blogging is a remarkably effective means of inbound marketing:
“Seventy-nine percent of companies who have a blog report a positive ROI for inbound marketing this year, compared with just 20% of those companies that do not have a blog.” [HubSpot 2013 State of Inbound Marketing Report]
But blogging requires time and persistence
Business blogging delivers inbound leads for remarkably little capital investment. Frequency makes blogging even more valuable. In the HubSpot survey, the 82% of companies that blog daily report an ROI for their inbound efforts, compared with 57% of those who blog monthly.
Yet keeping a blog ‘fed’ regularly can be a big challenge for companies of any size. (I struggle myself finding time for this blog.) If you want to commit to consistent business blogging, here are a few strategies that might help.
- Start by building an editorial calendar around your SEO keywords or search objectives, and brainstorm ways to fill those topics.
- Integrate blogs with other content initiatives. Some of my clients now ask me to prepare a blog posting with every new customer story or white paper I create for them. Have a new video? There’s a blog in that. Make blogging part of all new content development.
- Share the love. Enlist multiple people to contribute to your blog, each with their own subject matter concentration.
- Use ghost-bloggers. If you have a visionary executive who doesn’t have the time or inclination to blog, have a writer talk with them and put together blog postings from the conversations. Or create a blog in an interview format to pull content from a reticent contributor.
- Look beyond writing. A blog can be an infographic, a quote, a video or some photos. Just be sure to include your search keywords in accompanying captions, labels or headlines.
- Invite guests. Perhaps a valued customer, partner or analyst would like to write a guest post. It doesn’t always have to be your own employees.
- Always consider what the customer wants to read. Answer common questions. Respond to concerns or criticism. Give people a reason to check your blog.
On a side note…
If you want to look at a company that practices what it preaches when it comes to inbound marketing, look at HubSpot. This report is a classic example of an effective content marketing and inbound marketing strategy: generate useful, relevant and valuable research for your target market and share it freely.
You can download the report from http://offers.hubspot.com/2013-state-of-inbound-marketing.