The method of blogging continues to evolve, but one thing remains true for business blogs and personal blogs alike: we blog to provide informative pieces of content and to engage with our set target readers.
According to Nielsen’s study, a total of 23% of internet usage is dedicated to social media and blogging. That’s a notable rate to consider when starting your corporate blog now and to reap its business benefits.
One notable thing about corporate blogging is that most consumers’ purchasing decisions rely on blogs more than social networks, making blogs the 5th most trustworthy resource on the internet, as proven in a study by Technorati.
Here's how your business blog, when done right and strategically, can win you more traffic, leads, and eventually sales.
Corporate blogging and the inbound sales methodology
Before blogging, there were lots of cold calling telemarketers and expressive advertisement postings that surrounded us all. Such outbound sales methodologies can cause disruptions to your customers, depending on the approach and occasion. The main problem of outbound marketing is that it’s more focused on the product/service offered, rather than the buyers’ needs.
Imagine if you’re on the receiving end of a cold call, would you also like it if a certain offer will be forced in front of you? As marketing trends and technology outgrow each other, so do the buyers’ purchasing behavior and journey.
This is where the marketing strength of inbound lies—prioritizing the buyers’ needs over the product/service offered. The best way to strengthen your inbound strategy is to establish the voice of your brand and increase awareness through your corporate blog.
Now, imagine yourself as a buyer. What’s the first thing you do before making a purchase? You hop in at the internet for social proof and reviews about a certain product. You’ll read a number of blog posts that discusses your problem at hand, even scrolling up to numerous pages in Google’s directory.
And after doing an ample amount of research, voila! Your problem is solved through your own efforts, even without a salesperson’s need.
Notice the difference?
As your corporate blog is the forerunner of your inbound strategy, you should cultivate it in a way wherein your prospects can get to know more about you through informative blog posts and content offers. Steer your marketing efforts to what matters most—the buyer’s journey stage they are in as they browse your company blog.
Using Your Blog to Convert
There’s more to corporate blogging than just publishing quality content and gaining a significant number of views and shares per blog post.
Similar to how you manage and secure your business’ daily operations, so does the effort you have to put into your corporate blog’s maintenance.
Ever wondered how big companies and brands manage to convert visitors into leads just with their blog? Aside from balancing between content quality and quantity (which most company blogs fail to do, leading them to get lost in the competition especially to those who hire a credible lead generation company), it’s also important to take note of these characteristics to make your corporate blog lead friendly and sales guarantee.
1. Positioning CTAs around your content
Call to actions (CTA) are your blog’s secret weapon for attracting leads and elevating brand interest. CTAs are compelling statements that embolden your prospects into customers through form signups for content downloads such as eBooks and other content offers.
CTAs are conversion wonders. You can appropriately place it in your blog sidebar, header, at the middle or end of the blog post, and through hyperlinking. However, remember to make your CTAs’ visual elements be on par with your statement.
If there’s another thing that can influence your blog visitors into making a decision, it is the visual design varieties of the CTA buttons, from the color scheme, size, and length—every small detail varies.
Speaking of CTAs, let’s also tackle the next step after your prospects click on your enticing CTA: the landing pages.
Remember signing up for social network sites to access your first social profile and connect with your friends? Your blog’s landing page should also work the same way. Provide your readers a valuable content offer that will be worth the sign-up and future referrals to your blog.
A corporate blog that converts go beyond the usual social shares and traffic views. Your landing page should do the trick to secure your prospects’ lead potentials through an enhanced and A/B tested form fields, which your readers will happily register their information in.
You might be thinking that you must gather all of your prospects’ details as much as possible within their first registration. But, you must forget that idea because the less form fields your prospects will fill up, the more conversions you’ll generate.
According to a research by DK New Media and Formstack, the preferred number of form fields should be 2-3, no more than 10 form fields will increase your conversions by a massive 120%.
Most importantly, make sure your headline is catchy (can catch attention within 8 seconds) and valuable as the content itself, as more than 90% of visitors who were enticed with your headline will also read your CTA as stated by MarketingExperiments.
Your CTA must have the power to make your readers perform an action within your blog such as “Read on to know more.” Through this, they will be curious to learn more about what you’re offering, and at the same time, increasing your website traffic.
2. Gaining repeat traffic through valuable and targeted content
Some of your blog’s content performs and converts better than others.
After every content status report, set aside the top performing content from the others, and try to tweak and find another content angle to have repeating visitors come back to your blog to know more.
Producing another side to the content is another step to engaging with your prospects. Make them feel that behind the blog is a human (not just a content bot) that writes for their benefit and not through company terms.
Make it into a consecutive series of content discussions, do extensive webinars where your prospects can share their thoughts and opinions, or you can have a roundup wherein your prospects can have a say and include it in a next blog post.
Content that works can be a lead generation tactic that guarantees referral traffic and unique visitors to nurture and engage with.
3. Optimizing blog for mobile users
In today’s era where smartphones and mobile play a big part in society’s daily life, there’s no excuse for your business to be left behind the massive growth of mobile users and the much-preferred method of mobile marketing.
While setting up your corporate blog, optimize your whole website and blog content for a full mobile experience to garner a high rate of organic traffic.
According to the 2015 mobile marketing report of Smart Insights, 48% of consumer mobile search is done on search engines and 33% through well-branded websites.
Such is the marketing potential of going mobile-friendly, as it can be reachable anywhere and anytime by your potential targets through a simple mobile search.
As more businesses discover the vast sales possibilities of mobile, your edge should be through your mobile optimized blog and valuable content. Ensure your content is also SEO and search engine friendly. The more quality content you produce, the more search engines and people refer to your website for valuable information.
4. Blogging is good for branding and thought leadership
People prefer and trust blog posts more than advertisements and traditional ways of marketing. Great influencers blog their industry expertise and for the benefit of their readers, all for the benefit of sharing information, with no costs attached.
Blogging is a great way to understand and relate to your readers and prospects more, without the need to advertise your product. You also let them decide on their own, as your blog posts to do the talking.
According to HubSpot’s State of Inbound Marketing in 2012, 92% of companies who blog a number of times per day have acquired a customer or two from their blog.
If you’re still adamant on how blogging can have a large effect on your overall ROI, think of this: blogging is free and is your very own company space. It’s the digital space where you will start your journey towards being an industry thought leader and be part of the larger blogging community where people will seek for your sole advice and help.
Good sales come to companies who blog. Your blog is your company’s persona online, so treat it well and watch how your conversions increase over time.