The numbers are in and keep growing: Blogging is becoming an essential part, even top priority, for companies employing inbound marketing programs. And, inbound marketing is the latest trend of engaging more precisely with customers and prospects.
To be successful, inbound marketing requires focusing on creating highly personalized content, like blogs, to educate and support your customers’ needs—and then spread that content digitally through the Internet, smart phones and other electronic devices.
While initially time-consuming and labor intensive, this content commitment has a huge payoff of higher quality sales leads generated over more traditional paid outbound marketing initiatives (more about the differences between inbound and outbound marketing in next week’s blog).
Hence, the widely touted marketing slogan, “Content is king,” is ringing even louder these days with numbers backing up the claim.
Take a look at a few of these statistics Blogger Pros’ gathered:
- Technorati’s 2013 Digital Influence Report found that blogs are now the third most influential digital resource (31%) when making overall purchases, behind retail sites (56%) and brand sites (34%).
- King Fish Think Tank, a resource and forum for marketing professionals, quotes a study from eMarketer, Inc. showing that over a third of marketers consider content marketing to be their lead focus, up 19 percent over last year and ahead of social media.
- Another study from Econsultancy and Adobe shows that content marketing (and blogs are considered content) has leapfrogged social media into the top spot – an increase of 10 points over 2012.
- Sixty percent of businesses have a blog, 35 percent blog at least once a week, but 65 percent of these businesses have not updated their blog in one year or more, according to statistics shared by Jeff Bullas, author of “Blogging The Smart Way.”
- According to a recent study by Ascend2 called “Marketing Strategy Report: Social Media,” improving customer engagement is the most important objective of social media marketing, followed by improving web traffic and increasing sales revenue. “Tweeting” and “liking” is nowhere enough activity. Content creation is the best way to effectively engage customers, increase reach, increase sales revenues, increase website traffic and improve lead quality. Article/blog post content is the #1 most important tactic for reaching these objectives.
- Businesses that blog one to two times per month generate 70 % more leads than companies that don’t have a blog, according to MarketingPros, a marketing research firm.
“The numbers in these recent studies showing the importance of content creation are impressive,” noted Gail Jones, co-founder and director of writing services at Blogger Pros, Topsfield, MA. “However, you must be sure to deliver high quality, ORIGINAL content by professional writers, which builds credibility and trust. Customers are savvy. They appreciate and value the personal touch, which is what relationship-building is all about. Quality content takes quality time and effort. The creation or enhancement of your reputation and company image cannot be rushed. Excellence requires thought, focus and clear objectives.”
In the new world of digital marketing, content creation—with a focus on blogging—must be part of your overall marketing strategy. Blogs are most effective when done consistently and frequently with fresh content.