Blogging is critical for your business: 5 ways to make blogs work for your brand

Blogs, am I right? Do we still even need those? The truth is you really, really do. From providing your brand with a personality of its own right through to ensuring your clients can find you at all, a blog should be the cornerstone of your marketing plan. Here’s Zebra 360 Marketing’s top tips for helping your blog drive your brand- and why your South African website, social media and brand needs a blog to back it.

Business owners who see digital marketing success know that a blog is one of your stalwart advertising tools. It can make an immense difference in upping brand visibility, driving leads and closing sales. By now we all know that heavy investment in unique, engaging content is key to a good digital marketing strategy- and that same strategy should start with your blog.

  1. Increase traffic- especially search engine traffic

It’s become increasingly hard to get your homepage ranked well for your core keywords. Your chances of achieving this lofty goal can drop even further if you’re competing in an arena with multinational entities, be it production, sales, clothing, the travel industry or many more. You can’t spam your front page to achieve this goal either- that’s there to serve as your brand statement. Important to have, but maybe not the most informative source for your clients. What’s a savvy marketer to do?

Get a blog! Think of each individual blog as a fishing hook. We all know that the more lines you have in the water, the better your chances of hooking a fish. Each individual blog article you have is another chance to get a consumer interested in you. Now, instead of one lone page, you have many different content-rich pages as ‘bait’. From answering key customer questions to uncovering niche keywords you’d like to rank for, blog pages boost your search engine visibility. As you add more content to your site, your page gets indexed more and more by search engines. This makes even more pages on your domain visible. Organic search visibility and increased web traffic? Yes, please!

Most websites will rank well for their business-specific keywords and brand name. But how well do you rank for those elusive long-tail keywords Google loves? Your travel website may bring in those looking for ‘South African travel’ and ‘Bob’s Tours’. How does it do on ‘Key travel tips for your safari’ and other specific phrases, however? Getting authority over those higher-converting long-tail keywords are key… and that starts with a blog.

2. Humanise your brand and start a discussion.

Modern marketing needs brands to have their own personality. Millennial consumers aren’t interested in faceless corporations. They want to feel there’s an entity and a brand with meaning they can interact with. Your carefully crafted website content is there to do its job, of course- but that job isn’t to help your brand personality shine.

Your blog is how you will flesh out your services, entice customers to your offerings, and show your brand personality and passion. A blog for your business is a unique opportunity to share your voice with your customer base, boosting their trust in you. You will help make your brand more useful to them, more likeable, and more engaged in what matters.

Blogs can also initiate a two-way conversation with your clients. Knowing that you’re open to conversation, feedback and even complaints encourages people to interact with you. And knowing what your client base is thinking is invaluable for brand development and growth.

3. Support your social media messages and stay fresh

As every digital marketer knows, quality content is key. Where are you getting that unique, high-quality content from? Sharing other media can be an effective strategy- but the content creator is gaining many of the benefits, including brand personalisation. Sharing your blogs through your social media channels is a fantastic way to increase traffic to your own brand website and portal. Blogs can even be a key cornerstone of building an email marketing campaign.

Blogs also address Goggle’s ‘freshness factor’. Google wants to see new content added to sites regularly. Sites which show this liveliness get ranked better. Fresher content also allows you to make use of news and current events, leveraging their interest to keep you trending in searches and your customer’s minds.

4.  Boost your brand profile and improve your SEO/SERP

Whether you’re a new player in the industry or an established company you need to keep in the public eye. Attention spans are short, and all your carefully gained authority in your niche can quickly be lost. Your business blog gives you a platform to develop this trust, familiarity, authenticity and authority. Ever-fresh content helps cement you in the eyes of your client base and keeps you top of their minds. Who would you trust more as your tour operator? The company with only a bland blurb describing the tour on their page? Or the brand authority who gave you all those helpful hints and tips on making the most of your trip?

Even better, your business blog will become a key part of building one of the three pillars of good SEO- inbound links. In fact, this is near impossible to build without a blog! Great blog content builds authoritative links as you come to be seen as an industry authority. A good blog also allows you to develop key niches of SEO content without restriction.

5. Increase leads

The research is pretty clear on this one. The more pages a site has the more leads that come in. Sites with over 400 pages get up to 6 times the leads of those under 100! In other words, the more you blog, the more the leads role in. The more leads you have, the more sales you close and the better your ROI.

People tend to make the mistake of expecting blogs to peak immediately. While this tends to be the case with other social media- your tweet drives leads for less than a week-blogs are instead a long term lead investment. Once indexed, they stay there, generating lead after leaf over time. Timeless, relevant content will generate views many months after posting… and those sweet leads will just keep rolling in.

An active blog shows your customers your business is thriving. It’s alive and well, and you’re loving and caring for it. A dead blog can be very damaging to people’s perception of your business! One with high-quality content, however, is the marketing gift that keeps on giving. Hubspot even suggests that a blog will boost your ROI significantly- to the tune of 13x the ROI of competitor companies that don’t prioritize blogging.

A blog will make your business better. It’s really that simple. If you don’t have the time to invest in creating key focused content for your company (or don’t even know where to start), why not let the Zebra 360 marketing team handle it for you? You can reap the rewards of an authoritative blog without needing to do the hard work yourself. Can you say win-win?