Do you know that David “Screaming Lord” Sutch, as leader of the British Monster Raving Loony Party, was Britain’s longest serving party leader from 1983 to June 1999, when he hanged himself?
To the casual bystander, this ferociously fantabulous fact may be as trivial to our topic as the lovemaking habits of adolescent skunks relative to the phase of the moon, but it can be important for you if you consider that so many business websites die in quiet desperation and that helping them is simpler than their owners think.
Yes, it’s better writing.
Well, as the late Hungarian communist dictator, Janos Kadar was fond of saying, “let’s call the potato soup potato soup”, let’s call this writing… well, blogging.
I know many business people have a love-hate relationship with blogging.
Intellectually they know blogging can be very beneficial to their businesses, but somehow when it comes time to sitting down and write, many of them find some more exciting forms of busyness.
So, today we shed the light on nine great benefits of blogging.
I hope these nine benefits can motivate you into action and you become a regular blogger in the future.
So, let’s get started before the Sun goes down….
1. Good Education And High ROI Investment
Blogging is one of the few marketing activities where you make a good investment in the future by learning and sharing the latest and greatest in your industry.
The blogging part will bring you future return in the forms of new or returning readers, sales leads and customers.
The research part for your new blog entry requires that you keep yourself up-to-date in your area of expertise.
And the topics are virtually unlimited. If you keep an eye on your industry’s news, you have plenty of new information to share with your target market.
For instance, if you run a car mechanic shop, you can notify your Honda Accord owners about a new type of engine oil that’s been developed especially for 201 or newer Honda Accords.
And the narrower your market is, the easier time you have to select topics that are relevant to your market.
2. Gaining Notoriety
It’s an algorithm that ranks authors based on the sharing of their posts on social media, the quality of their backlinks and comments interactions.
It shows that Google has been growing way beyond search engine keywords and focuses on content that have been written first for humans and only then for search engines.
Of course, as time passes, search engines are getting more and more sophisticated and bear closer resemblance to how humans search for and digest content.
What is also means is that serious bloggers have a better chance to reach the top of the search pages than people who merely try to hack Google with shady keyword tricks.
You can read here how Google Author Rank could change content marketing.
3. You Generate More Website Traffic
If you have your blog on your own domain (which ought to be the case), and you write your blog posts regularly, your blog posts drive more visitors to your website.
More visitors mean more sales leads and more leads mean more customers.
And all that without the high cost, headache and frustration of dialing for dollars, knocking on doors or responding to RFPs.
One overlooked fact about blog posts is that about 10% of them tend to compound. It means the number of visitors to 10% of all blog posts is increasing over time, representing 38% of the total traffic a website receives.
According to research by Hubspot (graph below), a compounding blog posts can generate 150% visitor increase in six months, 230% in 12 months and 240% in 24 months.
Also note that “How to…” type articles have the highest probability for compounding.
Also, Social Media Today reports that, boosted by blog posts, indexed web pages can grow by 434% and indexed links by 43%.
4. Blogging Can Be Nicely Systematised
While writing the blog posts is real human effort that can’t be automated, it can be built into a process checklist. For a good revision, you may want to learn how to create effective check lists; a skill that can serve you for many years to come.
Also, pay attention to the images you plan to use in your blog posts. Blog posts with images get 94% more total views than naked posts.
As you make your blog checklist, thinking of repurposing, you can put together an audio, video and Infographics checklist too. You can plan with the end in mind.
The reason why many businesses lose sight of their blogging is that, instead of a streamlined process, blogging is a random list of motley tasks.
It feels like you have to reinvent the wheel every time you want to ride your bicycle or drive to work.
The more of the process you have in a check list (system), the more you can liberate your mind to focus on the creative aspects of writing.
5. Readers Love The Kind Of Short Content Blogging Lands Itself To
Blog posts are ideal for short pieces like tips and checklists. The good thing is that as you write your short pieces, your brain may well get triggered to create longer and more detailed pieces on the topics of the short pieces that you can duplicate in audio, video or infographics.
Seth Godin’s blog is a good example of how you too can play with the length of your posts. He has some very short and some very long posts. And as a reader of his post for several years now, I think I can say, this is how we, Seth’s readers, like it.
6. You Can Publish Existing Content
There is a good chance, that you have some good content that you created in the pre-blog era and could be used again.
You may not like reading all of them, thinking “Oh man, how embarrassing!”, but everything can be tweaked and repurposed, but I bet you like some of them.
But even the ones you don’t like. Just take a deep breath and revisit them.
Don’t worry about how much you don’t like the old version. After all, every tree can be carved into a lamp post.
And if you mess up the lamppost, you can repurpose it to a wooden spoon.
And if you mess up the wooden spoon, you can repurpose it to a toothpick.
If you have some list-based pieces, like “10 ways of” or “Top 10 reasons”, you can take each of the 10 ways and reasons and unpack them one by one in separate articles. But now you can go deep into the topic.
Then you can repeat the unpacking in different formats, like audio, video, check lists, infographics, etc. Every repurposed piece means new visitors. Some people don’t like reading but love watching videos or listening to podcasts.
7. Blogging Creates Changes On Your Website That Attract Search Engines
Whenever you publish a new blog post, you’re changing your website’s overall infrastructure. Every change on an indexed website triggers the search engines to revisit your site and re-index the changes.
It turns out that some 80% of daily website visits are from blog readers. What happens is that when people read your blog post and like it, they go to your website to see who is behind the blog post. Writing blog posts may be a business tactic, but people want to do business with people whom they know, like and trust.
Now you may be concerned about the young age of your blog, but the good news is that young blog age can be compensated with regular posting.
As it turns out, after only 51 blog posts, your blog can have as high as a 53% and after 200 posts, a 350% traffic increase.
This is a pretty serious hockey stick improvement. It means that at this stage, you probably start getting more visitors per post than before.
8. Turn Press Releases Into Blog Posts
There are so many events in a company that you can always find some that are worthy for press releases. The two most important online press release distributors are PR Web and PR Newswire. You write your press releases, and they distribute them to various publications.
PR WEB also has an extensive resources section where you can learn the ins and outs of press releases and how to make the most of them.
And other PR agency, PR Leads is a subscription service where you can subscribe to certain topics and industries, and you receive relevant requests from journalists every day in your inbox. PR Leads too has lots of resources about how to get the most from journalists and editors.
If you compare that you may pay $5 or more per click on a PPC campaign, then having your press release published for $200-300 at newspapers and magazines with circulation of hundreds of thousands of subscribers, then you may conclude that the press release may be a better investment.
Of course, it’s vital that you know how to write press releases.
9. You Blog Can Act As a Pad For Future Product Launches
In his highly successful programme, The Product Launch Formula, Jeff Walker teaches the step-by-step process of launching new products and services.
The essence is that you don’t just plunk your stuff out in the marketplace with one loud thud, but you gradually launch it with many less loud “mini” thuds.
And that can make your blog the diary of your launch process. You start writing before your product launch and follow the whole launch process with systematic writing.
In an oddball way, your blog becomes a scrapbook for the birth of your newly-launched product.
With every post, you go deeper and deeper into the new product and describe it in more detail and from more exciting angles.
And how important are your blog posts for your launch?
In his book, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, dedicated to aspiring writers, Stephen King writes, “A British advertising man with a proper education can make magazine copy for ribbed condoms sound like the Magna goddam Carta.”
Never mind the British ad man, but mind the importance of the words. The importance of great content that must escort your launch process.
You may say you’re not a born writer and you rather have a root canal without anaesthetics, but don’t make a hasty decision.
First, root canal is nasty and painful even with anaesthetics. It wears out shortly after the procedure, and it’s not exactly pleasant.
But when you add up what you could benefit from regular blogging, then it’s highly likely you’ll find the time and willingness to sit down and write.
Or if you don’t like writing, you can get a speaking program for your Windows-based computer, so you can dictate your blog posts and the system converts your voice to text. Then you do a bit of tweaking and polishing and Bob’s your uncle. You’re done.
And if you run on Apple, it has a pretty good built-in dictation program.
And if you just don’t want to do it yourself and prefer to outsource it, then learn how to hire a content writer.
So, just overcome your initial inertia and start writing.
In history, there have been two notoriously nasty Vlads.
It turns out, Lenin had a piece of business wisdom…
“Running a business involves extraordinarily simple operations, which any literate person can perform. Those in charge of those organisations need not be paid more than any ordinary worker.”
He was partially wrong, but he was right in saying that business is really a sequence of small actions that don’t require extraordinary skills.
And this can be comforting to people who believe they are not good writers. I guess, when they see the fruits of writing in the form of higher profits, they will be willing to type their fingers to the bone rather than cold call or waste their time on responding to RFPs.