Having a website is now an essential part of modern business. But a good website should be much more than a static “shop window” for your brand. Implementing a blog function enables you to engage with your audience, prove your expertise to the world, and build a strong SEO presence.
In fact, marketing experts DemandMetric report that companies who blog receive an average of 67% more leads per month than those who don’t!
But what is a blog? And why is it especially beneficial to B2B businesses? Let’s take an in depth look.
What Is a Blog?
A blog (short for “weblog”) is a regularly updated website (or part of a website) that contains written articles (“blog posts”) about a given topic. As a concept, blogging chiefly started out with private individuals keeping personal blogs about their own interests; but in the past decade or so, the business world has really taken the idea and run with it.
The aim of business blogging is to build up a bank of helpful content that’s relevant to your products and services, but also relevant to the needs of your prospects. Let’s look at OLCO Design’s own blog as an example. We’re a digital marketing and graphic design agency, but we blog about all manner of directly and obliquely related topics that might be useful to people looking for design or marketing services, such as:
- The 7 Types of Graphic Design in Marketing
- What is SEO? A Practical Beginner’s Guide
- How to Select the Best Hosting Provider for Your Website
So without further ado, let’s look at 4 compelling reasons why business blogging is essential – especially if you’re a B2B.
4 Huge Reasons Why B2B Business Blogging is a Must
1. Blogging Gets Prospects “In Your Corner”
We’ve all heard the phrase “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours”. When someone does us a favour, we’ll naturally feel obliged to do something in return – we’re wired for reciprocity.
Also bear in mind that nowadays, people will generally Google questions that they don’t know the answer to. It’s therefore much more likely that someone is going to search for a question relating to your industry rather than your precise brand or company name.
So when someone searches for an industry relevant question and they find a blog post from your company that provides a succinct answer, they’re naturally going to come away with a positive awareness of your brand. They may even reciprocate by following you on social media, by checking out more of your content, or even making an enquiry!
The right content can be instrumental in turning complete strangers into moderately warm, brand-aware leads.
2. Blogging Builds Credibility
Maintaining a regularly updated blog in which you discuss up to date, in-demand industry topics helps to prove your knowledge and expertise to the world at large. Well-designed marketing collateral and slick sales copy is important, but ultimately it only shows that you can “talk the talk”. Blogging proves that you can also “walk the walk” – it paints you as a credible and knowledgeable provider.
Blogging enables a business to show off its best qualities. Prospects can find you, interface with your content, gain an impression of how you can help them, and gauge what you might be like to work with. It all feeds into your all-important “know, like, and trust” factor.
When you discuss up and coming industry news and events on your blog, it demonstrates that you’ve got your “finger on the pulse” within your niche.
Additionally, by choosing blog topics that align with your target audience’s common queries and needs, you also show that you deeply understand their needs and their current situation.
3. Blogging is Good for SEO
As mentioned earlier, whenever an answer eludes us, a Google search is never usually far away. Therefore answering relevant, commonly asked questions through your business’s blog is an excellent way to get your brand in front of people who are actively seeking relevant solutions.
However, merely having a blog function on your site and updating it regularly isn’t going to catapult you to the top spot in search. But by providing fresh, well-thought-out, keyword-rich blog posts on a frequent basis, you provide ample information for search engines to judge your fitness to rank for certain queries.
Google naturally wants to recommend the most up to date information to its users. With this in mind, search crawlers look at whether websites are regularly maintained and kept up to date with fresh content. Publishing frequent, high-quality blog posts signals that you care about the upkeep of your site and that you’re worthy of attention in search results.
By publishing captivating long-form content, you’re likely to keep visitors on your site for longer. This is another factor that search engines like to see – more time spent on your site indicates that you’re keeping visitors engaged and interested.
Publishing engaging, unique blog posts also encourages other sites to link to yours. These “backlinks” from other sites are another positive ranking signal – it shows that other websites rate you highly enough to forward their visitors to you.
Because you’re discussing information that’s pertinent to your industry in each and every blog post, your content will naturally feature related keywords. It gives you the opportunity to include different jargon and phrasing, as well as more specific “long tail” keywords that people may be searching for.
4. Blogging Starts Conversations
Blogging provides a couple of ways to instigate valuable two-way conversations online.
Sharing high-quality blog posts with your social media followers (and within relevant groups and hashtags) can understandably drive traffic to your website and help maintain a level of online brand awareness. Blog posts are also incredibly shareable for others too – people may be unlikely to share your sales pages, but they would be much more eager to share a blog post that they found useful or enlightening. Actively encouraging readers to share your content with their social followers is a great move for brand awareness!
However, you don’t need to rely on social media to harness the social power of business blogging. If you implement a comments section on your blog, you can interact with readers on your own website. Comments sections are a great place to get a discussion going with interested parties.
Business blogging is an inexpensive way to open up a meaningful dialogue with prospects in a longer, more in-depth format than social media. You can arguably portray yourself more eloquently on your own website because you’re unhindered by social media’s limitations, such as maximum character counts, media restrictions, or constantly fluctuating social media algorithms (which are generally skewed to keep users on their platform).
So if you’re in need of a website with an easy to use blog function, or if you’d like to incorporate blogging into your existing marketing strategy, book a free consultation with the OLCO team today!