If you cannot measure ROI, does that mean it is zero?
That’s crazy thinking.
Why do only 21% of the Fortune 500 companies have a blog?
That really IS crazy thinking. These companies have abandoned their blog, a proven source of leads and reputation growth, to focus more on social media channels that usually have a tiny effect on sales.
Yes, I know Snapchat and Facebook are this year’s top flavors, but you don’t abandon Vanilla and raspberry ripple to focus exclusively on Chocolate Lasagne or Moon Rock flavors just because they are newer to the market and are heavily promoted to consumers.
In this era of multi-touch marketing where it takes at least seven marketing ‘touches’ to convert an Internet user into a potential buyer, it is impossible to isolate the effect of any marketing channel. Any buyer will only reach for their credit cards once they trust you, but trust is the third step; before that, they have to like you, and before that, they have to have to know that you exist.Only 21% of the Fortune 500 companies have a blog.Click To Tweet
Proving Your Existence
Can you quantify this effect? No, but without a website, you have no sales, so it is definitely a factor in your company’s success.
How do people find out about your business? Google.
Where do people search for what they need? Google.
If you have no website, you might as well not have a business. When your site is bigger you get more traffic, and how what’s the best way to grow your web presence? A company blog.
Screenshot source – free PDF download
Hubspot’s free report on Marketing Benchmarks from 7,000+ Businesses can be downloaded from the link above, and it argues a pretty convincing case for having a business blog.
The bar chart above clearly shows that sites with more web pages get more traffic, and that this is true whether you are marketing to other businesses or consumers. The best way to grow your site is to add blog posts to it three or four times a week. Have a strict editorial schedule to build your business blog.
Helping Your Readers
Can you quantify your gain from being useful to your blog users? No, but if you change your attitude from helpful to unhelpful, then your sales will dry up overnight.
Your blog gives you an easy way to demonstrate your expertise and how readers can benefit from your knowledge. You may think you are blogging to grow your bottom line, but blog visitors are only interested in how you can help them to solve their problems.
Building Your Reputation
Can you quantify the effect your credibility has on your sales? No, but every sale depends on it.
Once people know about you; that is the first step. The second is that they have to come to feel they know you. Sales people understand that the key to a deal is likeability. In a showroom, staff use body language, facial expressions and tone of voice to show how likeable they are and to convince browsers to buy.
Online you have to work differently, but you still have to convince site visitors that you are the perfect person to deal with, rather than someone who is just trying to make a sale. A blog helps you to demonstrate your humanity.
Can you quantify the reward you get from talking with people in the early stages of your conversion funnel? No, but if you cut out the first stages of the sales process, there will be no later stages.
Talking with website users is a part of proving your helpful attitude and establishing your credibility. Encourage comments and discussions on your posts, because these observations will tell you more about your users’ problems. Readers are reaching out to you and answering them in a positive way will move everyone who sees it further towards trusting you enough to buy your services.
Email List Building
Can you quantify the effect of each email you send? No. You do know the response rate to each message, but you can never know how many previous emails have contributed to how the subscriber thinks about you.
An email management system lets you divide up your subscribers according to any criteria you like. You can then write and send email sequences that are designed to solve a particular group’s problems. Multiple emails are essential, which is where email automation comes into play.
So, Why Don’t More Companies Have Blogs?
A social media presence is a necessity and employee time is limited, so the company blog is put on hold. Eventually, it gets forgotten and dies. Nobody cares because a blog’s ROI is so difficult to calculate.
A blog should be the workhorse of your business, growing every week and bringing in more visitors to your sales funnel. Social media posts can achieve much more when they are used alongside a blog, rather than as a replacement.