I hear lots of reasons why a B2B company should blog:
- Google gives preference to “fresh” content.
- Search engine spiders visit your site more often when you’re frequently updating content.
- Blog content gets into the search engines faster (sometimes an hour after you post it!).
- Blog content provides the fuel for social media, i.e. Tweets, FB, G+ or LinkedIn status updates.
- Blogs allow you to converse with customers, prospects and fans one-to-one.
These are all great reasons to blog. But I have another one.
A blog leads to increased exposure for your business.
In October, just hours after I purchased my iPad, I had to reprogram my thermostat. I walked over to the wall panel with my iPad so that I could get the name of the manufacturer in order to do a search for the manual.
I found the manufacturer’s site easily enough, but when I went to access it, I couldn’t get past the home page. That’s because the site wasn’t iPad friendly. The menus didn’t work nor could I find a sitemap link.
To see if the site had the manual I needed, I had to boot up my laptop.
This article isn’t about what this inability to access content does to your sales process (kills it, basically), so I won’t go there. I think you get the point.
Once I had my thermostat reprogrammed, I quickly dashed off a post about making your B2B site iPad friendly using the site as an example of what not to do, and thought nothing more about it – until B2B Magazine made it their blog post of the week on December 7.
That same week, Jackie Jones, from Response Magazine, called for an interview after finding my blog post. “I read your post,” she said. “You’re obviously an expert on how marketers should be using mobile devices.” Ok, wow, thank you!
Once the article went live, I wrote a blog post about it – and again, just put it out there on a Twitter, LinkedIn and my FB page. Much to my delight, this post has been retweeted
66 70 times as of this writing!
I’m not saying that every single business needs to implement a blog – or that each post you write will garner this type of exposure. But, it’s happened enough – for me and for my clients – to allow me to state with certainty that a blog does have some wonderful PR-related benefits.
Blogging isn’t easy, it does take some time, and you do need to dedicate resources to it – either time, money or both. And no, you can’t simply push out press releases to it, and yes, you do have to create original content for it.
But, blogging does make sense for business-to-business and here’s why:
It shows your expertise – The marketers and small business owners I talk to worry that they’ll need to produce long, thought-provoking pieces. What I’ve learned is that people are hungry for quick tips and information they can use right now.
A blog (and an e-newsletter, too) is the perfect way to add this type of information to your site.
Your expertise gets found – Content marketers talk a lot about content getting “found.” Yes, that does happen. But what also happens is that your expertise gets found, too. Your ideas get linked to, tweeted, and commented on – giving you and your business yet more exposure.
Reporters come to you — I’ve written (ok, ranted) enough about clueless PR people who send out untargeted PR pitches. When you create original blog content that’s geared toward helping your audience — and that’s fairly interesting and well-written — reporters end up calling you. This is actually a much nicer way to do things.
In my own example, I didn’t have to send a press release to anyone touting my expertise. In fact, I don’t send out any releases or email and somehow seem to garner a respectable amount of PR for myself. You can do the same.
If you’re a small B2B business and you have a blog, what’s been your experience with regard to your blog generating press for you?