To blog or not to blog?
The terms blogging and content are everywhere, and probably things you’ve been told or heard you need to be doing more of. But I bet you haven’t been told the full truth. Read on for 5 myths we want to debunk about blogging for your brand.
1) It’s good for SEO & it’ll boost my google rankings
Adding extra content to your website through a blog is a great way to show google you’re a website to be noticed. Thing is, blogging won’t cure miracles. If your website isn’t performing well to begin with, blogging isn’t going to be worth your time and energy. Make sure all of your other pages are as optimised as they can be, with a really clean design for an easy and intuitive user journey. Bottom line - if you’re websites a bit crap, blogging won’t polish it. Sort out the basics of your website FIRST before you start trying to drive a load more traffic to it.
Also, for blogging to REALLY help you with your SEO rankings, you have to be savvy with your writing skills. Dropping a load of key words for google to find you, but in a natural and engaging way is a SKILL. This is why folk pay for it to be done. Headings are also a great little tactic for google to pick you up in their search algorithms. If you’re blogging with the intention for it to boost your Google numbers, do as much research into SEO as possible to really maximise on your efforts.
2) It’ll boost my traffic and sales
How many blogs have you got bookmarked or saved unread, waiting for a rainy day? And how much time do you actually find to get round to reading these? People are really short on time and (generally) we’re quite lazy. To really have an impact on your sales you have to be writing DAZZLING content that people will actively share and shout about as soon as it’s live - really MAKE them want to spend their precious time investing in what you have to say. You also have to make it relatable to your brand and draw people into buying your services or products, but without looking like you’re selling.
Blogging is all about appealing to the top of the marketing funnel - i.e cold leads - people who don’t even know they need or want you yet. Helping boost brand awareness, giving value and building trust with the reader who over time might eventually become a warmer lead. That process is long, takes a lot of nurturing and requires a high level of consistent effort with exceedingly well written and highly engaging blogs.
Basically, if you want to boost your sales, look further down your marketing funnel - social media, facebook ads, google ads. These all directly target your exact customers (if done properly), instead of putting precious time, energy and money into something someone might read or might save in their bookmarks for eternity.
3) It’ll help boost my social media
Similar to the website issue - if you’re struggling getting your social media posts seen or engaged with, realistically it’ll be even more of a struggle for your blog. If your followers aren’t investing their time in your brand’s content already, they’re not going to invest any additional time in reading your latest thought piece. Get your social media community sorted, then consider giving them some cracking content - otherwise it’s a lot of time and effort for people to just scroll on by.
I will say, it’s not the quantity of followers you have, but the quality of them. If you have 100 followers but you have a high amount of them liking and commenting on your social media, it’s a good sign they’re interested and will invest in what you have to say. It’s better than thousands of followers who are quiet. The key is to making your words something worth sharing to REALLY boost your social media presence.
Basically, get your social sorted before you start trying to push your followers anywhere else.
4) Something is better than nothing
No. The worst thing you can do is waffle without purpose or intent for the sake of it, because you heard some dubiously titled “digital expert” chatting about it on LinkedIn (we all know the type!). As with any of your marketing - make a content strategy. Thoroughly plan out what you want to say, how you’re going to say it, and what intention you have for the piece. If you don’t have a fixed idea in your mind of the action you want the reader to take - how will they know!? Purpose is EVERYTHING!
5) Everyone else is doing it
If you’re not a natural writer or don’t enjoy it, blogging is a pretty painful process to put yourself through without solid conversions promised at the end of it. If you’re in this category - DON’T DO IT, or if you feel it’s REALLY necessary, save yourself the headache and invest in outsourcing. If you’re writing it begrudgingly, hating every moment it’ll show and it won’t be an enjoyable read. There’s no digital marketing police that’ll knock on your door and tell you off for not blogging. Do whats best for you, and channel your efforts into the areas you do enjoy. That’ll have so much more impact than forcing a half-hearted blog out.
If you genuinely enjoy it - go wild. It’ll do no harm at all!
Yes, we get it’s somewhat ironic debating the pitfalls and merits of blogging in a blog. We’re cool with that.
Now, we want to clarify, we’re not knocking blogging AT ALL! It’s a fantastic medium for adding value to your content offering, really showing personality and engaging with your community with humour or education. But, like with all things, it really does have to be done well and exactly for maximum impact. Here’s a few tips:
1) Get everything else sorted first. To us, blogging is the bows and ribbons on your digital marketing package. Not completely necessary, but nice if it’s there.
2) Strategy & purpose are key. Always hold in your mind WHO you’re speaking to and WHAT action you want them to take from reading
3) Do your research. Read blogs. Read loads of them. Get ideas for format, questions, tone. Then take those ideas and make them your own. No-one likes a copy cat.
4) Proof read. Before you go live, proof read - ideally on a different computer or in a different location. The change helps you see it with fresh eyes.
5) Marinade on it over night. Don’t write and post straight away. Let the idea develop in your head, re-read and amend. You’ll be amazed of the new turns of phrase you’ll have conjured up!