At our firm, we are all big believers in content marketing – for our clients and for ourselves – because of all the great things it can do for a business:
- Building awareness. Not just because of the content itself, but because of all the promotions employed to get people to access it.
- Nurturing sales leads and clients. There’s no better way to stay on a buyer’s radar than by sharing helpful, beneficial information. Whether it’s nurturing a prospect during the selling process or staying in touch with a client between projects, content marketing is ideal.
- Establishing and maintaining your reputation. Being known is good… but being known for something is much better! And sharing content will help you achieve that. For example, share a lot of information on data analytics… and pretty soon, you’ll be recognized as an expert in that area.
- Generating sales leads. Some content is so valuable – e-books, white papers, webinars – that interested people will give up their contact information in return for it. And when they do, you acquire a new sales lead.
So strong is our belief in content marketing that I have written a blog post nearly every week for 9½ years… and I’m fast approaching 500 total articles. But as an experiment, I decided to try something… to NOT blog for a month to see what would happen. [Spoiler alert: nothing good came as a result of it.]
- Overall – and this is the big one – visits to our website during my blogging hiatus were off by about 40%! Ugh! Why is this the big one? Because once someone is on your site, they can look around, learn more about your business, access additional content and even reach out to you. That is, the buyer’s journey always starts on your website, so getting visitors to it is critical!
- Social media activity and engagement declined. First of all, without fresh content each week, I had less things to post about on social media. Less posts means less people read our material. Further, because it’s our original content that gets the most views, likes and comments (i.e., ‘engagement’)… those activities also dropped off.
- Like social media, email metrics declined, as well… especially the click-thru numbers, which show the number of people who clicked on a link in an email to a go to particular blog post. But without content to link to, the click/site visits weren’t happening.
- Overall SEO ranking. One of Google’s top criteria to help your company rank high on internet searches is that fresh, relevant content is regularly added to your website. And when I stopped doing that, our average weekly ranking also fell.
Bottom line: Lesson learned! No more breaks from blogging for me! The fact is, content marketing should be the cornerstone of your marketing efforts because of all the benefits that it delivers. And the key to success – as I proved over the last month – is to be frequent and consistent.
Good luck and good marketing.