Bill Gates famously declared, “Content is king” in 1996. More than two decades later, this statement holds true. A staggering 84.5% of US companies plan to use utilize digital content marketing strategies in 2019, according to eMarketer. On the consumer side, 84% of people expect brands to provide content that entertains, tells stories, provides solutions and creates experiences. Content marketing can help businesses meet their expectations.
To be effective, your content marketing strategy should comprise multiple components, primarily blogging. Wondering why blogging plays such an important role in content marketing? Here’s what you need to know.
Making Sense of Content Marketing
In order to grasp the value of blogging, it’s first important to understand the basics of content marketing. The Content Marketing Institute (CMI) defines it as “a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience - and, ultimately, to drive profitable action.”
When used properly, content marketing can help businesses:
- Build trust and credibility
- Drive website traffic
- Generate quality leads
- Increase sales
The main tactics used to deliver branded content include social media, email marketing, influencer marketing and blogging. And for those who are just getting started, blogging is a great starting point for any content marketing strategy.
The Many Benefits of Blogging
Blogging is a fairly easy and cost-effective way to share value-driven content to your target audience. Not surprising, 53% of marketers cite it as their top content marketing priority, according to HubSpot. Specifically, the following five benefits are linked to blogs:
1. They establish credibility and build trust.
When it comes to improving customer relationships, blogging is unmatched. It helps your business establish itself as an authority and thought leader while allowing you to directly address your customers’ pain points. As a result, they perceive you as a trusted resource in your industry.
2. They educate prospects.
In today’s digital world, consumers are used to having information at their fingertips. As such, providing them with the information they need - when they need it - is another way to keep them engaged. As reported by Conductor, consumers are 131% more likely to buy from a brand after consuming “early-stage, educational content.”
3. Drive organic traffic to websites.
Websites with blogs have 434% more indexed pages and 97% more inbound links, according to an infographic shared by TechClient. Considering the vital role websites play in driving sales (see no. 5), traffic generated from blogs can have a significant impact on your bottom line.
4. Generate quality leads.
Lead generation is a key objective for many businesses, as more leads can equal more sales. Blogging can support this effort, as B2B marketers that use blogs generate 67% more leads than those who do not.
5. Influence buying decisions.
According to HubSpot, websites influence 97% of clients’ purchasing decisions. Blogging is a major part of the equation. In fact, the infographic mentioned earlier shows that 61% of US consumers have made purchases based on blog posts.
The takeaway? Companies that fail to realize the full potential of blogging are missing out. If you’re looking to optimize your content marketing strategy, adding a consistent, compelling and comprehensive blog component can help you make the most of this growing marketing approach.