Yes, we understand the irony of this blog post. We are telling you that you don’t need a blog through a blog post on our blog. But hear us out. Our blog is a place for us to share our expertise with you. We have the manpower, time, and resources, to dedicate to this kind of project.
However, we understand that may not always be the case with everyone else. When deciding on where to spend time and resources, you should always consider the return on investment. We want you to think about why you’re starting a blog and why using that written content is an answer to your inbound marketing woes.
Trust us, we’ve seen the stats that argue why you should have a blog:
- B2B Companies that blog only 1-2 times per month generate up to 70% more leads than those that don’t (Hubspot)
- 79% of companies that have a blog report a positive ROI for inbound marketing (Hubspot)
- 93% of buying cycles start with an online search, which is why SEO is vitally important for businesses looking to get found online. If you don’t rank well in search, it’s hard for people to find you. (Marketo)
Inbound marketing should not be ignored, but blogging isn’t the only tactic to employ. I challenge you to consider where your audience is, what kinds of content they enjoy consuming, and where they want to see it. For example, Hilary Rushford is a stylist and entrepreneur coach. She is a big advocate for not investing time and energy in a blog because she has been able to double her income using Instagram, Periscope, and her email list. Although this is a rare success story, it is worth exploring for the benefit of others. Hillary treats her Instagram posts like a blog – sharing the same kind of valuable quality content, in a more compact package.
Think about your brand and business. Does it make sense for you to have blog? Did you start a blog because it was the cool thing to do at the time, or did you start a blog with a specific purpose and goal in mind? A blog can have tons of different purposes. It can be used to build brand awareness, to help the site rank in search engines, to drive leads and conversions, and most importantly, to share valuable information with your audience and customers. If you are not blogging with a purpose, you may be doing it all wrong.
Now, not having a blog doesn’t mean that you cannot create content. There are plenty of other ways that you can share information with your audience without the accountability of managing a blog. You can share blog post on networks like LinkedIn or Medium. You can take that same content and create videos on platforms like Periscope and Blab or even record it as a podcast. You can even turn that content into many pieces or shorter content like tweets, Instagram posts, Pinterest pins, and more. You really want to consider where it is your audience is dwelling and how they like to consume the information you create.
Blogs are great tools for businesses and entrepreneurs to communicate their expertise. But let’s be real, your blog isn’t the fastest way to reach people and it’s not the most efficient use of your time. Think about it. Writing a blog post can take hours to write, edit, and promote. Recording a Periscope broadcast or a podcast with the same information can take minutes (depending on the length of the recording, of course). Which one is a better use of your time?
You spend hours creating articles that only a percentage of your audience actually sees and reads. There’s a lot of talk about the 80/20 rule: 80% of your time should be spent promoting the content that you spend 20% of your time creating. Entrepreneurs and bloggers often have the time split backwards. Brands have this misconception that putting out more content will yield better results, but the emphasis should be less on the content creation and more on the sharing. Sharing content in various ways over time is crucial to increasing views and engagements. CoSchedule is a great tool to help with this.
No matter how great your content is or how much you promote it, the online space is simply over-saturated. Blogging was the good idea that many people implemented. Even if you nail down post promotion, what about being able to reach your audience directly? A blog increases your exposure potential because it is public, but your email list provides you with direct contact to interested people.
People don’t want to read as much. People are also bombarded with information daily, making it much harder for them to focus on you and your message when you’re blogging. By focusing on sharing your best content via your email list for example, you take control of the conversation. Instead of you waiting for your reader to remember to visit your blog or see your social media post, you can directly communicate with them by going to their inbox.
If you are unsure if your blog is a waste of time, remember – metrics matter. Look at your Google Analytics and identify the referral sources that are driving page views and conversions. If your blog isn’t getting many visitors or driving people to your product or service, it’s pointless. Content will always be king, but it is a much better use of your time if you are writing and posting in the right place and with the right format. Next time you are about to write a blog post, stop and see if there is another more compelling format you can package the information in.
Updated November 22, 2017.