Many articles have been written over the years enumerating the benefits of blogging for online lead generation. While blogging is but one of many ways to generate leads online, there is significant data to back these assertions up. Here are just a few data points in support of business blogging, courtesy of Inbound Marketing experts Hubspot:
- B2B companies that blog get 67% more leads/month
- B2C companies that blog get 88% more leads/month
- Companies that blog have 55% more website visitors
For the sake of simplicity, there are three broad reasons why blogging helps companies generate leads online:
1. It drives traffic your brand
2. It amplifies your brand message
Related Resource from B2CWebcast: PR Hacking: How Ideas Spread And What Marketers Need to Know
3. It helps legitimize your brand
Blogging helps drive traffic to your website by creating indexed pages and (eventually) inbound links to your site, both of which are critical to SERP (search engine page rankings).
Exemplified by Google’s Panda update, search engines are increasingly favoring fresh, high-quality content in search rankings. The nice thing about blogging is that each blog has a discrete URL, and as such is a separate web page that can be indexed by search engines. The more blog posts you publish, the more indexed pages you create for search engines to display in their results, which in turn helps your page ranking on Internet searches. Also, search engine web-crawlers tend to favor original content that has a more recent timestamp; they may skip over content deemed replicated or already indexed.
Inbound links (aka “backlinks”) are simply links that come from an external site to your website. When you blog, you are creating fresh, thoughtful (hopefully) content that others may find relevant or interesting. If an external site references your blog, they will usually include a backlink to your original blog page. The number of backlinks is an indication of the popularity or authority of a website.¹
Backlinks are important for SEO because some search engines like Google give more credit to websites that have a large number of quality backlinks, and consider those websites more relevant than others in their results pages for a search query.¹
By creating indexed pages and attracting inbound links, blogging will help your company generate organic traffic, the first step in online lead generation.
AMPLIFY YOUR MESSAGE
Given what I just wrote about website traffic, it is no wonder that blogging is useful for generating interest in your brand. However, with the massive growth of social, integrating your web-based blog posts with social media can exponentially amplify your message.
As a matter of form, blogging is considered to be part of social media. Hair-splitting aside, most business blogs are website-based, therefore it is critical that brands actively integrate blog posts with their social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and especially Google+. Each time a blog is published, it should be automatically shared throughout your various social media. Moreover, you should dedicate resources to actively promote your blog posts on each social media channel.
It really does work. Hubspot’s market research found companies who blogged had 2X the Twitter followers as those that did not.
LEGITIMIZE YOUR BRAND
As Randa Clay aptly pointed out in a recent Fast Company blog, the more customers know you, the more loyal they become. Blogging builds consumer loyalty and trust by helping prospects and customers solve problems or address pain-points. Most blogs will offer a subscription option through RSS and email, giving your company an opportunity to interact with subscribers every time a post is published.²
Brands often use business blogging as a platform to show off their industry expertise and establish thought leadership. A recent survey conducted by Fast Company found that 71% of respondents said blogs affect their purchasing decisions either somewhat or very much.² It’s fair to assume that businesses
In an increasingly crowded Internet, blogging provides your company an actionable way to drive web traffic, amplify your message, and legitimize your brand. In turn, all of these efforts will help your business generate leads online.
Is your business actively blogging? If so, what are the benefits of blogging that you have found? Share your data in the comments below and we will feature you in a blog!
¹ Webconfs.com, “Backlinks, Another Important SEO Item”
² Fast Company, “Five Reasons Your Business Needs A Blog”