How do we differentiate in the Crowded Online Market place? This is the question every CMO and CEO is struggling with.
Brand building tools have changed. HELPING is new Marketing. It is not only new marketing but also a new brand building tool.
From the SELL ONLY mindset websites, how your brand can bring VALUE to the market place for your target audience?
Sharing (not only selling what you have) what you know that will help your target audience address their problem.
Sharing of knowledge which helps their target audience via Blog is what many progressive companies have resorted to. They are reaping the benefit too of their large-heartedness.
Some Data in Support of Blogging:
- 53% of marketers say blogging is their top content marketing priority. (HubSpot)
- Blogs have been rated as the 5th most trusted source for accurate online information. (source)
- In 2017, 66% of marketers reported using blogs in their social media content. (Social Media Examiner
In order to understand how companies are dealing with their business blog, I reviewed a few business websites. What I found was:
Every type of business is Doing it:
- Start-ups: Saathipads, Swiggy
- Professionals: KPMG, Khurana & Khurana Advocates
- Consulting Firms: Accenture, Mckinsey
- Hospitals: Cleveland Clinics
- Banks: Citi Bank, American Express Bank
- Mutual Funds: Fidelity, UTI MF
- Insurance Companies: Edelweiss Life Insurance, Exide Life Insurance
- B2B Companies: John Deere, The Pioneer in B2B Blogging
B2B marketers that use blogs get 67% more leads than those that do not. (source)
- Entertainment Companies: Disney
- FMCG Companies: J & J, Colgate
- Large Companies: IBM
- Online: Esty, Xero, Zoho, H&R Block,
What I also found was:
- A blog is now finding a place in the top bar of the websites.
- PSU banks, insurance companies, healthcare service providers do not have a blog on their website. This is a big miss. Their private sector counterparts and service aggregators are blog savvy.
- Many blogs were not updated since years.
- Many blogs were without regular posts.
- Some blogs were about only company related news and press releases.
- Many blogs talk only about their products related posts.
- Most blogs were not reader-friendly. Their posts were with long sentences and longer paragraphs.
- Most blogs were not on-page SEO enabled.
- Many blogs were distractive with sudden pop-ups, many images, and links on the page.
Doing things wrongly not only affect its success chance but also companies fail to understand the advantage it offers.
If my website is pathetic, I will not get the desired result. Without the desired result I will even not consider a website as a digital medium to achieve my purpose. The same is true for business blogging.
If you do it casually and not consistently, your result also will be uninspiring. Therefore, your focus and investment will also get curtailed.
You will lose the benefit of doing something, which benefits your business, in the right manner.
Learn to do it right and reap the benefit.
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What are the top marketing priorities your company faces?
As per the report – State of Inbound -2018, the following are the top marketing priorities.
How Blog Adds value?
Blogs add value when blogger writing for the Target Audience. Website content is for the marketing purpose, Blog content is for the helping purpose.
It also adds value;
- by making your website webpage heavy which helps it rank better on a search engine.
Websites with a blog have tended to have 434% more indexed pages. (source)
- People (TA) search internet not to look for your site. They look for some information. Valuable information with proper SEO created on a consistent basis will help your website get better ranking on the search engine when people look for the desired information.
- Valuable blog posts are shared by the readers, websites are not. More shared posts make the website more popular and generate more traffic.
- Blog posts generate inbound traffic. This is far better than push marketing activities. Lead generation and conversion rate are better when the traffic is inbound.
Companies that Blog have 97% more inbound links and B2B companies that Blog generate 67% more leads.(1)
- Consistent and strategic blog posts can help companies achieve thought leadership status, help in talent acquisition, demonstrate the good work that a company does like a good corporate citizen.
- All the above ultimately help the companies to address the priorities mentioned above.
The key is a long-term commitment and consistent posts.
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How to do the Blogging right?
This is very important. Doping it right defined doing for the sake of it or doing with an intent.
- Define the Purpose.
- Define the Target Audience (TA).
- Define Different TA Persona.
- Define the Problem Target Audience want to Address. (their Goal)
- Define their Journey Stages.
- Decide the Frequency of posts.
- Decide the Tone, Voice, and Key Phrases.
- Decide the types of Blog subjects.
- Decide the Measurement matrix.
- Decide the Promotion plan.
Blogging is a planned activity with consistent commitment. It is not a haphazard, occasional when the budget permits or seasonal marketing activity.
“First thing’s first, you have to budget. I don’t just mean money. Although, you’ll probably need that, too.
I also mean time. This will take up a lot of it, but the payout will be worth it.” Neil Patel.
Blogging is not only for the large companies. The fact is smaller companies can compete with the larger companies by their smart blogging strategies.
Companies who can’t afford to do massive ad and marketing campaign, blogging can do wonder for them.
Consistent blogging with the right SEO enabled posts can help companies reach the top of the search engine.
Great blog posts can build a great online brand.
Remember: Do not get tempted to write only about what you sell. Always write about what your target audience wants to read.
Your sell target is not their problem, their problem is your sell opportunity.
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What to Blog about?
This is the key question. Your blog should add value. Offers insight. At the same time, it should be interesting.
The best way to approach what to blog about is to remove dust from your business mission and vision statement.
For example, if your business mission statement is:
Making people healthy and beautiful, naturally.
Is it necessary it should only be achieved only by selling to the people? If no, then the company can create a blog which actually promotes awareness of how to live a healthy and beautiful life naturally.
Here is one more mission statement of a bank:
To establish a high-quality, customer-centric, service-driven, private Indian Bank catering to the ‘Future Businesses of India.
Here catering to the future business not necessarily means by offering services with service charges. It can be expanded to offer knowledge services which are insightful to the future business of India.
The bank can blog about what they learn while dealing with the customers about banking and borrowing. This could be a great service to the future businesses of India.
Why Fidelity Money is writing about the promotion? Here’s how to get promoted—according to 7 managers
- Would you dare to invest in a subject which you are not directly dealing in?
- Would you resist the temptation to do any product marketing with your post?
- Would you dare not to add any link to any of the company products?
There are several such target audience specific posts on their blog.
This kind of selfless act wins the content marketing and blogging space.
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“People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch of a drill. They want a quarter-inch of hole.” Theodore Levitt.
To take the quote deeper, even they are not interested in the hole. They want to put their kitchen jars on the shelf. Which means the deeper you want to know what your TA want, chances are higher they will notice you and deal with you.
The question is whether you want to write about the drilling machine which you sell or the hole or the shelf or how to have an organised kitchen? The choice is yours.
Remember the choice is also with the TA whether to read what you write or no. If they read and want to read more and more of what you write, a relationship is established even without your sales and marketing message /team reached him or not.
Recently I spoke to one startup entrepreneur. He informed me inbound lead conversion is about 75% which is far greater than push marketing approach. Qualified inward traffic will come when they found you not when you find them.
Business blogging is powerful. Done right, it serves multiple purposes.
Are you doing it right?
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