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The benefits of blogging for brands

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Why read this? : We look at the benefits of blogging for brand-building. Learn how it can help you meet customer needs. Where it fits into your marketing plan. And how it connects to other brand activities. Read this to learn more about how blogging benefits your customers and brand. 

The blogosphere’s a crowded place. Latest estimates suggest there are over 600 million blogs out there. If you want a blog to support your business online, it needs to be :-

  • easy to find.
  • relevant and interesting for customers.
  • driving a call to action so customers think, feel or do something differently with your brand. 

This is easier said than done.

As per our writing blogs guide, there’s lots to think about. For example, keyword research to find out what customers are looking for. Readability tools and techniques to improve the quality of your writing. And using a call to action to move customers forward on their journey.

But before all of those, you need to work out why you need a blog in the first place. What’s in it for your customers? Where does it fit in your marketing plan? How does it connect to other brand activation? What exactly are the benefits of blogging for your brand? 

What’s in it for customers?

Most people who blog see it as a way to share thoughts about a topic they love. But a business blog has to do more than that. A business blog needs to deliver some sort of benefits to your brand. 

Like most things in marketing, you start with the customer. They have to need something which you writing a blog can help them with.

Filling out a customer journey map can help you work out what those needs might be. Most blogs help customers meet one of these needs :-

  • spark my interest.
  • find out more.
  • delight me.

Customer Experience Journey Map

Spark my interest

Blogs can help you grab the attention of new customers to the category (and to your brand). To spark interest, you work on creating a blog which has a strong hook to make it unique and interesting.

This type of blog often uses emotional hooks. Emotions generally kick in before logic does. 

So you create content which makes customers laugh, for example. Or which inspires them. 

Young woman on train station platform looking at her mobile phone

The content needs to be easy to engage with, so it draws customers in.

Often that means the blog content offers some sort of entertainment value. It tells compelling stories. It’s highly shareable on social media. Often, it adds photography and video content to amp up the entertainment value. 

The goal’s to have the customer feel closer to the brand from the experience of interacting with the blog. 

Find out more

Once you’ve got a customer’s interest, blogs are a great way to help them find out more about you. To find out what you care about. 

You can use your blog to share relevant information, and you have more time and space to do so compared to other types of communications. 

This approach is often more education driven.

You share advice and insights about the category. For example, how-to guides, demonstrations and case studies.

Woman wearing a grey sweatshirt and looking at her phone in a dark room

You can still deliver it in an entertaining way, of course. But you focus more on sharing your knowledge and expertise with customers. 

Your aim here is to be helpful. To answer questions and solve problems. You share resources, for example. What you teach, helps customers become better informed about a relevant topic.  

Delight me

Finally, your blog can also benefit existing customers as well as pull in new ones. You can use it as a way to keep in touch with loyal customers who’ve already bought into your brand.

You use your CRM database and social media to alert your followers when you have something new, interesting and relevant to say .

Your blog content can delight these customers by reminding them why they bought into you in the first place. It reminds them what a good decision they made choosing you. 

lady with arms up in the air and happy smiley face

You use the interactive nature of the blog, where people can comment and respond. It’s a spotlight on what’s going on with your brand. These updates help you stay top of mind with existing customers. 

Understanding customer needs is key

Key in all this is to understand the customer.

That means you need market research to gather customer feedback, to understand their needs and how you can help them. 

You need these insights to write blog content that’s relevant to the target audience.

You write your blog content with that specific customer profile in mind.

Their demographic profile.

Two people holding up large ears on a small dog

The occasions they use products and services in your category.

How their attitudes and motivations shape their needs and decision-making. 

Your blog writing has to be for the customer. If it’s not giving them something they need, they won’t read it.

Where does it fit into your marketing planning?

The brand equivalent of the customer journey is the brand choice funnel.

This marketing planning tool helps you identify the jobs to be done to grow your brand. It helps you set your objectives and decide your priorities in the marketing mix

Blogging is primarily a promotion (marketing communications) activity. Your target audience read and interact with your written and visual content. That experience needs to help you deliver against different stages of the brand choice funnel. 

The brand choice funnel - trust - aware - consider - trial - loyalty - repeat purchase

They usually connect together something like this :- 

  • Spark my attention blogs to drive awareness
  • Find out more blogs to drive consideration.
  • Delight me blogs to drive loyalty.

Of course, other types of brand activation also deliver these objectives. Advertising drives awareness. Sales promotion drives consideration. CRM programs drives loyalty

So the question of how and when to use blogging comes down to the benefits it offers over and above these other choices. These are :-

  • connections to the customer and other brand activities. 
  • supporting your brand identity. 
  • driving customer interactions.

Connection to the customer and other brand activities

As we said earlier, for a blog to work, it needs to meet a customer need. To offer something of value. Entertaining or educational content, or something else to delight the audience.

It’s this “something of value” for the customer where you find the benefits of blogging for your brand.

Most marketing communication activities “push” messages out to customers.

Advertising, media and sales promotions, for example. Customers mostly experience these whether they want to or not.

A rope net with many connections

But blogs are more a “pull” form of marketing. You can’t force customers to read your blog. They have to choose to do so. It’s an active choice on their part compared to other channels which they passively experience. That means they’re more engaged. They want to read that content. 

Plus, because it’s a relatively long form of content (usually between 1,000 and 4,000 words), you’ve got more flexibility in what you can do with them.

Compared to your average social media post, you can add more links for example. Tell a longer, more interesting story. Add more photography and video content. You can create more of an experience and share more connections to the rest of your brand activation.

Support your brand identity

Blogs can also be a good way to boost your brand identity. For example, you link themes and topics you cover back to your essence, purpose and values.

You can also show the brand’s personality in the tone of voice you use and how you interact with comments and questions. You can use the style of the blog to reinforce your brand positioning.

Brands which want to come across as warm and approachable can use entertaining blog content, for example. They’d establish their customer-friendliness, and share fun content and experiences. 

Screengrab of Three-brains home page - headline says "Ready to raise your game? Outthink, outplay and outgrow competitors with three-brains"

Brands which want to come across as expert and knowledgeable would focus more on educational blog content. They’d establish their expertise and share ideas and thoughts. 

And brands which want to show they were caring and customer focussed, would use more loyalty encouraging content. They’d establish how much customers mean to them. They show the great customer service they offer. 

Remember, the better the blogging experience, the more positively the customer will think about your brand. It strengthens the connection between the customer and your brand by reinforcing who you are, and what you care about. 

Drive customer interactions

Finally, in terms of brand benefits, blogging gives you the opportunity to create direct interactions with your target audience.

As it’s regularly updated, it helps you maintain an informal and on-going conversation with customers.

For example, you encourage them to leave comments, or ask them to contact you if they have further questions. 

You can also highlight these interactions in future blog posts.

Writing - person typing text into a laptop

Sharing (with permission) stories about other customers can be motivating and inspiring in many categories. It also shows how much you value keeping customers happy. 

Your blog won’t interest every customer. But it can be deepen the connection with the ones who share your passion about the topics you cover. 

Other benefits of blogging

The benefits of blogging don’t stop there. There’s other, more specific benefits to look at like :-

  • SEO and website performance.
  • Public relations support.
  • Data and research.

SEO and website performance

Blogging is good for your website. Regularly updated content makes your site look more active. That helps boost your SEO ranking. Google prefers sites which are regularly updated to sites which sit with lots of static old content.  

That means there’s a virtuous cycle when it comes to using blogs on your website.

High quality blog content pulls in traffic. The longer they spend on your site, and the more they interact with it, the better your SEO performance becomes. Your blog posts start showing up higher in search, and that brings more visitors to your website.

You can also link posts together around relevant topics. If you have particular categories you write about, you link other relevant articles so it’s easier for customers to find them.

It means you don’t need to cover every point about a topic in a single post. You can point the reader to where they can find out more about related topics. For example, in the introduction to this article, we linked to articles on keyword research and readability. That means we didn’t have to explain these topics in detail. But if readers want to find out more about those topics, they just follow the links.

Public relations support

You can also link your blog to your public relations activities.

For example, you can talk about events or new product launches in your blog. And as you do them, you tell everyone your blog is where they can find out more information about the activity.

Blogs are a way for customers to “keep in touch” with their favourite brands and what they care about.

Blogs help customers stay up to date point with the brand, and what it’s doing.

Inside a concept hall, lots of confetti flying in air, with audience reaching out their hands towards it

And often they can offer an ‘inside view’ of the brand, with extra content not available elsewhere. 

PR is also more of a “pull” than a “push” way of marketing. So blogging and PR are often a strong combination when you want to connect with, rather than overtly sell to customers.

Data and research

The final benefit of blogging to consider is its use in gathering data and insights. It’s another way to learn about your customers, and what they need. 

That works in 2 ways. 

There’s the indirect insights you get from looking at how customers interact with your blog. You can see which articles get the most visitors and which customers spend the most time reading.

Those show what topics interest your customers. So, you write more about those in the future, and less about the topics which don’t interest customers.

Person holding glasses in front of them against a blurry street background

Plus, you can also get direct insights. Use your blog to ask customers questions. Ask them to comment for example, or share their own related ideas or experiences on a topic. That gives you direct feedback from customers. You can use that to adapt your content to better meet their needs. 

Don’t forget to include a call to action

As a final thought on the benefits of blogging, make sure you include a clear call to action in your blog. 

Remember, you’re aiming to meet a customer need. But your article won’t solve every need they have. If they have more needs, you use your call to action to point them to where they can get more help.

Other articles with more on the same topic. Your FAQs or a page where you share resources. You can even make it contact us, if that’s your overall marketing goal. 

Wooden scrabble tlles spelling out Go for it, with a speech bubble calling out action!

The call to action should always link to your blog’s business goals. The aim of  a business blog is to help customers move along a journey. That journey is linked to your business objectives. The benefit you get from blogging comes from the customer eventually being persuaded to choose your brand. That’s when you see the return from the time and money you invest in blogging.

Conclusion - The benefits of blogging for brands

Blogging offers many benefits for brands. 

Access to these benefits starts with understanding the customer and what they need. Your blog has to meet a customer need for it to work. 

You can use the customer journey map to help you work out what those needs might be. Most blogs aim to spark the customers interest, help them find out more, or delight them in some other way. 

You then relate these needs back to your brand objectives, and work out where blogging fits in.

White round badge with a read heart symbol against a dark grey background

This is where you see blogging’s main benefits for brands. It’s a great way to connect other brand activations together, for example. It also helps reinforce your brand identity and positioning, and provide somewhere for customers to interact with you.

The key to a blog’s success is finding a shared passion topic with customers. You need to be passionate enough about that topic to write about it regularly. And customers need to be passionate enough about it to want to read about it regularly. Finding that passion topic is where brands find the most benefits in blogging. 

Check out our blog writing guide for more on this topic. Or contact us, (our call to action!) to find out more about the benefits of blogging for your business. 

Photo credits 

Woman at station with phone : Photo by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash

Woman looking at phone in dark room : Photo by Chad Madden on Unsplash 

Happy woman : Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

Dog ears : Photo by kyle smith on Unsplash

Rope netting : Photo by Clint Adair on Unsplash

Person typing on a laptop : Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash

Marketing dashboard : Photo by Carlos Muza on Unsplash

Confetti : Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash

Glasses : Photo by Josh Calabrese on Unsplash

Go for it (adapted) : Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

Heart Button Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

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