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Is Blogging Dead? The Truth About Blogging for 2024
"News of my death has been greatly exaggerated."
A blog is a tool, and as with any tool, in any toolbelt, the key is to know when to pull out the hammer and when to go with a screwdriver.
In blogging, it is key to understand when to write a blog post and when to write a whitepaper (or tweet, FB update, or LinkedIn think piece). So, with that advice in mind, here's a selection of why we say: "Heck no, blogging isn't dead!"
Why Does Blogging Matter?
There are over 600 million blogs in the world. This number has been growing steadily in recent years and is expected to continue to grow. This shows a large and growing audience for blogs, regardless of the topic.
Blogs can generate leads and sales. A study by HubSpot found that businesses that blog generate 67% more leads than businesses that do not. This shows that blogs can be a very effective way to generate business leads and sales.
Blogs improve SEO. Good blogging boosts a business's SEO efforts by providing valuable, up-to-date information relevant to its audience. This, in turn, leads to increased traffic and sales, as search engines favor websites that regularly provide fresh content.
Blogs can build relationships with customers. Blogging allows businesses to establish a personal connection with their customers, building loyalty and driving sales. By sharing their thoughts and ideas on a platform that encourages two-way communication, businesses can answer customer questions and cultivate a deeper understanding of their target audience.
SEO isn't dead, and you still want to rank, right?
You want your site to rank and your keywords to be sorted out. Now, what's the best way to get those keywords onto a page on your site? In a way, will Google find and use them to boost your rank? We say it's by working them into headings, subheadings, meta descriptions, and alt text on blog posts. Oh, and of course, writing engaging posts on those keywords that people read and share (which also boosts your reputation and, by extension, your authority and rank).
You need to drive traffic, and people have an aversion to banner ads.
Blog posts are a built-in target for you to direct backlinks to. You can use them as landing pages for social media posts, resources to back up comments you're making on other people's posts, or just announce them in general via your Twitter feed and Facebook timeline. As your reputation and authority increase, you'll start seeing your posts rank on page 1 of the search results pages, increasing your organic reach even more. This is good because studies show that more and more searchers ignore paid results and install ad-blocking extensions in their web browsing apps.
A great way to show your human side.
Social media updates are short and must stay in the brand voice. So blog posts are your best option for expressing your brand personality and yours. You have the opportunity to weave the two together, to show your audience that not only are you representing your company and product but also being your own wonderful, quirky self. And people trust people, so this is the best way to build rapport and trust to start building your brand.
Who doesn't love a good story?
Your company blog is the best place for brand storytelling, too. Have a good one about how your founder came up with the idea for your widget. Serialize it and get it posted. How about a recent win? Maybe your infrastructure team removed the impossible and restored the site after a catastrophic failure. Or maybe your dev team pulled a miracle out of their hat and released a record number of bug fixes in one day. Whatever the story, tell it on the blog. Then tease it on your social media channels with links to the blog posts.
And on that note, who doesn't love a good deep dive?
Shake up in your industry? Write about it. Get detailed. Go all the way into the weeds and let your opinion be known. On the blog, that is. This is where you can go deep on industry happenings, upcoming releases, internal team member stories, whatever. If you find yourself with multiple thousands of words, consider making it an ebook instead, then post a summary to the blog with a link to the gated content to help grow your email list.
People love reading deep dives into subjects that interest them. Return to your company mission and the problems you started helping your audience solve. Have there been developments in that realm that you missed? Go back and fill in the gaps. Read your competitor's blogs, too. Then write about what they're leaving out. Go Deep.
Gives a needed boost to your social presence.
Blogging doesn't exist in a vacuum. You'll want to keep up your social presence at the same time as posting to the blog. That's where automation comes to the rescue, but that's for a different post. Blogging and social media were made for each other. Your posts get a needed infusion of readers from your updates, and your presence following gets a boost when someone reads a post that resonates, and they find you on Twitter to get more. This is a mutual, two-way relationship, so be sure you have the resources to maintain both before getting too far.
Keys to successful blogging
The bottom line is that your posts are engaging and relevant to your audience. That's what will drive readership, encourage interactions, and bring people back for more. Here are some quick tips for driving clicks:
Write better content;
grow your community;
invest in video content to supplement your content;
expand your reach on at least one social channel;
focus on your email list; last but not least
Pillar pages/topic clusters to build authority and keep Google happy
So, is blogging dead? Heck no! But as a discipline, it is changing. Where you found keyword-stuffed fluff pieces, you now find relevant content helping readers solve problems. Where you found lengthy think pieces serving the author's ego, you now find authoritative deep dives into subjects that resonate with their target audience and lead to engagement and conversion.
As a tool in your content marketing toolbox, a blog is like a good strong multitool. It's a place to engage your audience with stories, deep dives into industry goings-on, and a place to promote upcoming releases. It provides mutual support for your social media presence. As part of a topic cluster approach, it gives you a helpful landing page for incoming links and is a critical place to link to other content on your site. Overall, a company blog is essential to any solid content marketing strategy that shouldn't be discounted.