A blog is a core piece of your internet marketing strategy, which works together with other online marketing tools (website, social media, calls-to-action, SEO, etc.) as part of an overall method called inbound marketing. Think of it this way: inbound marketing is the type of workout you’re doing, let’s say it’s CrossFit, and internet marketing is the fitness tools you use - weights, kettle bells, bands, bars, ropes – to work different muscle groups. A blog is one of these components working a large muscle group, let’s say your core, because you need a strong core to support the rest of your fitness efforts and you need a strong blog to support your internet marketing strategy.
Why Google cares so much about your blog
Are you asking the question, why blog in the first place? Good for you! The most basic answer is because Google wants you to, and whether we like it or not, Google is in control. Google cares about your blog because that is one really big way it determines whether or not to show your company in the search results when someone searches a term or phrase related to your industry.
But you aren’t just blogging for Google. You’re also blogging for your current and potential customers. A blog will help position you as an expert in your industry, as well as a company that provides helpful information – the kind that people actually want and are actively searching for.
The importance of keywords
A keyword is the word or phrase that you type into Google when you are searching for something. The keyword phrase you type into the search bar tells Google what you are looking for. It then uses a complex formula to search the gazillions of websites on the internet to give you a list of the most relevant results. You need to know the keywords your target audience is using if you want to show up in that list of relevant results. You’ll be able to determine the keywords your target audience is using by doing keyword research using a number of different software programs or Google’s Keyword Planner tool.
Sometimes the keywords people are using can be counterintuitive. For example, we have a client who is currently blogging about ways to save money secondhand shopping. After doing some basic keyword research, we found that people are searching for “second hand shopping” not “secondhand shopping.” Technically, secondhand is one word, but that is not how people are searching. If the client wants to be found by people searching online, then they should use second hand as two words.
There are two types of keywords: long tail and short tail keywords. A long tail keyword might be “ways to save money second hand shopping” and a similar short tail keyword might be “second hand shopping.” Long tails are easier to rank for faster because usually not as many people are searching for that exact longer phrase. This is where frequency and consistency come into play.
Why the frequency and consistency of your blog posts matter
If you want to lose 50 pounds, the more you exercise and how specific you are about what you eat, the faster you will see results, right? The same is true for blogging. The more you blog using specific keywords the faster you will see results. This is your way of telling Google you are serious business. Each time you blog you are adding a new page of content to your website and Google likes fresh content. The keywords you are using in your blogs are signals telling Google the kind of information you are offering. If you are regularly doing this you are showing that you are committed to continually providing relevant information. Google will start noticing and seeing you as a credible source to list to the people who are searching for the topics you are blogging about.
Setting goals and expectations
You are probably wondering, how soon will I see my company’s name appear on page one of the search results? The answer of course is the ever vague “it depends.” It’s crucial that you set your goals and realistic expectations up front. The more you blog the sooner you will see your company crawling up the SERPS (search engine results pages) and ranking for keywords. We recommend blogging a minimum of 2 days a week. We chose to blog 6 days a week. No matter what, remember patience is a virtue. You probably won’t see any traction for about 6 months. Then one day, you’ll be in for a pleasant surprise. That’s just how it works. That all probably sounds really overwhelming to you. That’s okay. It is at first! But there are ways to make it work, even if you hate to write. We’ll discuss these in next week’s post. Stay tuned!
Blogging works! We’ve seen the results first hand with our own blog and a client of ours who is a podiatrist in Midtown Manhattan. Here’s a bit of encouragement to help convince you that blogging matters.
About eighteen months ago we shifted our whole approach to blogging at Half a Bubble Out and began blogging 6 days a week. Our website traffic has grown 400% in the past 14 months, leading to more conversations and more opportunities for customers.
In January of 2013 Adler Footcare New York was getting less than 400 visits a month to the website. We implemented an internet marketing strategy, which included blogging 3 times a week over the past 12 months. In February 2014 the site had 3,316 monthly visits; 2,685 of those were nonpaid (meaning they weren’t attached to a paid ad). While this is the effect of a holistic internet marketing strategy, blogging is a huge component of that.
Your business can be successful blogging too. If you’re ready to get started, contact us today. Otherwise, be sure to subscribe to our blog so you don’t miss next week’s blog about how to flex your writing muscles.
[This is the second post in the series “Blogging: The Lifeline of Your Internet Marketing Strategy”]