You've no doubt heard a friend or colleague declare that blogging changed their business forever. It was the silver bullet that fixed all their marketing issues. It introduced them to tons of prospects. It took their business from struggling to stable to growing.
All they had to do was blog...every day.
Is this claim true?
Blogging probably did transform their business. But, your friend or colleague is doing a poor job of explaining why. Here's what we've discovered as we've helped clients use blogging as part of their inbound marketing strategy.
- Consistency Matters: Posting every day isn't the secret to a successful blog, consistency is. Choose how many posts you'll create each week and then stick to it, for a long time. Our clients have found that it takes about 4-6 months for them to see blogging make a serious impact on their marketing efforts. One of our clients saw their blog go from 2.6% of their traffic to 13.44% in 4 months by posting twice per week. They're proof that consistency drives outcomes.
- Value Matters More: It doesn't matter how much you post if you have nothing important to say. Think through the unique value or perspective that you can bring to the world, and then start creating content. If you can't think of the unique value you have to offer, you're probably not ready to start writing.
- Your Audience Is The Most Important: On Friday, Polly wrote about the importance of knowing your audience. This is everything. If your audience doesn't care about what you have to say you may as well stop writing. Even worse, if you aren't creating content for the right audience you may be steering your company off course.
- You Must Have An End Goal In Mind: Blogging consistently requires a lot of blood, sweat and tears. It's far too intensive to do without an end goal in mind. So, choose what you want to achieve (increased sales, brand awareness, etc.), then start writing; not the other way around.
If you're considering blogging as part of your inbound marketing strategy, know this: it can change the trajectory of your business. You'll just have to keep these four lessons in mind to be successful.