Does frequent blogging make a difference?

Blogging can be one of the most effective – and cost-effective – ways to generate new leads. Small businesses that blog get an average of 126% more lead growth than non-blogging companies. But just posting an article once in a while probably won’t get you the results you need. Like everything else, applying strategic best practices is the ticket to achieving satisfactory results.

Bloggers who post more frequently reap greater benefits.

How’s your blog doing? What? Don’t have one? Or are you too busy to post?

If you are, you may be missing the boat. Blogging does make a difference. It can be one of the most effective – and cost-effective – ways to generate new leads. In fact, small businesses that blog get an average of 126% more lead growth than non-blogging companies.

However, just posting an article once in a while probably won’t get you the results you need. Like everything else, applying strategic best practices is the ticket to achieving satisfactory results.

Want more leads? Blog more often.

Blogging is a frequency – driven medium. There is a direct correlation between the number of posts per week or month, and the likelihood of gaining a customer through the blog.

One reason for this is that blogging adds pages to your site and makes it easier for Google and other search engines to find you. This helps your site rise in search engine importance, which makes it easier for your prospects to find you.

If you have good content and promote your blog articles well, you’re likely to find your efforts snowballing as people leave comments and share your content. Google loves shares and comments – they’re solid evidence that your content has relevance to real people.

Again, the more pages you have – especially if you offer solid, relevant content –  the easier it will be for your prospects to find your site.  The chart below (courtesy of Hubspot) illustrates the typical jump in monthly leads once a site exceeds 300 or so pages.

Hubspot page to traffic chart
Statistically, more pages = more leads. Blogging is a great way to rack up the pages on your site, and frequent blogging really does make a difference.

So, how often should you post to your blog?

The recommended best practice for an established blog is to post two or more times a week. For an emerging blog, daily is best (if not multiple times a day.)

Of course you will need to stay within your available budget and time frame, but I would highly recommend posting a bare minimum of once per week if you want the blog to be a significant part of your marketing plan. More is better, so if you can swing more frequent posting, do so.

Allow time to cultivate results from your blog

If your blog is new, or you are resurrecting a neglected blog, it may take few months or more before you start seeing the results you’d like. Don’t despair – just take a look at the nice J curve on the chart above to help keep spirits up during this time. Don’t forget to actively promote your blog through social media and other channels. I’ll give you some promotion hints in future posts.

If you’re not posting frequently enough simply because you’re too busy, there’s an easy fix for that – hire a blogger. (In other words, give me a call!) 😉 But if you are doing it in house for budget issues or just simply prefer to, you’ll want to do it as efficiently as possible. Stay tuned for ways to stretch your content and get more posts for less time!

 

 
photo credit: Adikos via photopin cc

Green Business: Where to share your eco-educational messages

There are as many avenues to educating your customers as there are ways to market to them. And the good news is, all your education attempts add up to effective marketing, too! Here are some good places to start.

There are as many avenues to educating your customers as there are ways to market to them.  And the good news is, all your education attempts add up to effective marketing, too!  Here are some good places to start:

·        Write articles about green issues and (depending upon your target market) submit them to local, national/international or trade publications.

·        Hold workshops and invite your customers and prospects.

·        Exhibit at trade fairs and business expos – and make sure you have plenty of good information to engage people and get them thinking about you as the expert.

·        Get speaking engagements. This will educate people about sustainability as well as making them aware of your business and what you offer and building trust in you as an authority.  If your business is local, try contacting churches in your area.  A lot of them are really starting to get interested in sustainability as a spiritual act.  They are hungry to know more and will thank you for the favor of coming out to speak!  (Don’t try to do a hard sell when you’re speaking to church groups, but it’s usually fine to give them informational pieces with your logo and contact info.)  Business groups are also good ones to speak to.  Try your local Chamber of Commerce.

·        Offer information kits, free reports and case studies to your clientele.  When you give people helpful, in-depth information on topics that interest them they develop a sense of gratitude and relationship to you, and are more likely to turn to you as an authority.

·        Keep educating your existing customers. Send a newsletter or e-zine out at least quarterly; once a month is even better.  Including environmental education messaging on packaging is another great idea.  Make it fun for your customers by holding contests and other events they can participate in and invite their friends.

·        Blog regularly (once or twice a week is fine).  When you blog on a topic of interest to your social media friends, post it and tweet it out.  (But only if it truly is good information and not just a thinly disguised sales pitch.)

·        Make videos about the same topics you speak or write about.  Your videos don’t have to be high tech as long as you present good ideas.  Even on a limited budget you can buy a little flip video camera for under $50 that will do the trick.

Get in the habit of videotaping any speeches you make, or even just capturing your thoughts on camera in your office, or documenting the positive changes your company is making. Put your videos to work for you by posting them on your blog, putting them on a CD or thumb drive and giving them to prospects or customers, using them as premiums for lead generation, or distributing them to the same kinds of groups you speak to.

·        Don’t forget your website. Add articles, case studies, videos and the like as extra pages.  Doing so can help with your search engine rankings, increase the amount of time people spend on your site,  and increase the chances of people linking to your site and/or coming back for multiple visits.

The important thing to remember is that consumer education is an ongoing process.  Do it consistently, one idea at a time, and always tie your statements back to positive personal benefits.  Over time, your efforts will make a difference!