When businesses hear the word blogging, they often think of social influencers writing about lifestyle tips and tricks, their latest experience with a new product, or how they most recently dealt with a difficult decision. Some businesses underestimate the impact that writing a blog on their specialties, industry trends, and important information can have on their incoming leads and potential customers.
Here is an example from one of our clients where b2b blogging made an impact and how their business blog converted a lead into a new customer! It was the beginning of winter and Randy Rudolph’s rear window and frame in his home were broken. The wind was blowing in through the plywood he nailed across it, his Great Room was cold, and he didn’t know what to do. Fortunately after consulting several of his neighbors, one of them referred Bill to Tilghman Builders.
“They worked really neatly and even replaced my siding and matched the paint color. If you are unfortunate enough to have to replace a window as I did, remember Tilghman Builders.”, said Randy in a comment on one of Tilghman Builders’ blogs.
In the past, Tilghman Builders has kept a continuous rotation of blogs related to roof, siding and window installation, and repair on its website. They show President and Owner Bob Tilghman’s technical expertise and provide answers to common questions. But before he began working with us here at LAIRE, it didn’t occur to him to blog. Like many small businesses, especially those in the home repair and construction industries, he wasn’t sure about the benefits of blogging or if his customers read blogs, so why bother? But how many people, including your prospects and customers, do search the web for information about products or services, content, and most importantly you or your competition?
My bet is that when Randy Rudolph’s neighbor told him about Tilghman Builders, he went straight to the website to research the company and found what he was looking for.
What are Business Blogs and Why Should My Business Have One?
Blogs are pieces of short-form content, housed on part of your website, that are about a particular subject matter related to your business. Unlike personal blogs or even blogs with a primary purpose of revenue generation, a business blog is a marketing channel, similar to social media, email marketing, etc., that helps support business growth. Maintaining a regular blog is a critical element of an effective inbound marketing strategy. Sixty percent of businesses who blog acquire more customers, according to HubSpot.
Let’s break it down.
Blogs Help Drive Traffic
Take a look at your website. Have you updated it recently? How long has it been? How many ways can you describe your “About Us” section? Blogs solve that problem. Every time you post a new blog on your website, you have a new web page on your website, which provides another opportunity to turn up in a search engine’s results list. By implementing relevant keywords in the post, you increase the likelihood that someone searching for information regarding those keywords will come across your website and become interested in what your company has to say.
You can apply this concept to other digital channels. For example, every time you post a new blog, you’re creating quality content for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest. This in turn helps expose your business to a new target audience that may not know you yet.
Blogs Help Generate Leads
Your blog is not a sales pitch, but the content you share in it could prompt your visitor to take further action. How does that happen? With a Call-to-Action (CTA) strategically placed anywhere in the blog, but usually towards the end. For example, to go back to Tilghman Builders, note the blog, “Best Siding Materials To Improve Curb Appeal and Protect Your Home”. At the conclusion of this informational blog, there is a clear direction to take if you want to learn more about siding and material options. It clearly states “Finishes Can Make or Break a Home Improvement Project”. Below that is a royal blue Call-to-Action (CTA) button that says “View Your Materials Guide”. When you click the button, you are directed to a landing page where you learn a little more about the guide and are then asked to fill out a form with your name and email. If you do read it and happen to be in the market for a good contractor who has just happened to provide all this useful information, who would you consider?
Blogs Help Establish Authority, Technical Expertise and Yes, Even Entertainment
Give readers quality content that will delight them, educate them, and generate their trust and goodwill. Show them that you are an authority in your field by answering their FAQs, providing technical information, and explaining industry news/trends. For example, get feedback from designers and engineers on new and clever ways of designing for construction and blog about it.
A blog is also a great place to offer more insight into your company philosophy, employees, and ideas. If prospects find answers to their questions in your blogs, they’re more likely to come into the sales process trusting what you have to say and will be more likely to buy.