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A Complete Guie to Business Blogging  

 

 

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Prediction: Writers Will Be The Marketing Team MVP's - And We Want Them ALL

  
  
  

Win Cash & Get A Full Time Job - Read This Whole Article


importance of content writersUnless you've been living under a rock for the last half-decade or so, you've heard talk about how inbound marketing - and the strong role that content creation plays in it - have become an increasingly important part of the marketing and business mix. Inbound leads cost less, convert at a higher rate, and have higher average customer values - so why would businesses not invest in generating more of them?

As someone who's consulted with hundreds of companies about their marketing programs, the most common roadblock that I've seen is the ability to create a high velocity of keyword-rich and persona-oriented content. Just saying that sentence hurts my head! The latest research indicates that producing enough content marketing is the biggest challenge for North American marketers. 

The Three Components of Success

  1. A high velocity of content keeps the site fresh and keeps both readers and search engines coming back to look for new content. It also gives you the chance to pursue multiple keyword phrases and value propositions.

  2. Keyword-rich content allows search engines (and real people) to extrapolate the context that defines your website and your business, and improves your ability to drive relevant traffic from search engines.

  3. Orienting your content around buyer personas allows you to attract the types of website visitors you want and influence them to become leads.

That's no picnic!

What We Know for Sure

There are a few things I'm willing to say with absolute certainty: One of them is that companies that don't create a high velocity of keyword-rich and persona-oriented content will fail to be competitive in coming years. Since blogs are really the only feasible method of creating such a diversity and velocity of content, companies that don't heavily and effectively invest in blogging are going to fail. The pure, naked unit economics of inbound marketing make it so that - even if large organizations can make revenue without blogging - organizations that invest in blogging are going to be more profitable and competitive. They will eventually overcome even the largest firms by being more profitable and therefore will be able to invest more heavily in their marketing.

It's Freaking Hard

There's a lot more to it, and I can (and have) tens of thousands of words on the topic, but here's the rub: It's freaking hard. Creating that much content is really hard. Which is - partially - why it's so effective. Google and the other search engines are focusing on content partially because it is so hard. It's difficult to game, and it does an excellent job of separating companies into tiers of expertise and quality results - which is improving the usefulness of search engines themselves.

Blogging is Like Jogging

I frequently say that blogging is like jogging: It has to be done frequently, consistently, and it takes a little time to see the results. Also, most companies don't blog for the same reasons that most people don't jog! Fortunately, unlike jogging, blogging can be outsourced to expert marketing agencies (*coughcough shameless-self-promotion coughcough*). Although, how cool would it be to outsource jogging? I'd totally pay someone to go jogging for me if it meant that I got healthier and lost weight.

But I digress. Because it's so hard, writers are becoming a more and more significant part of major marketing teams. In fact, it's my prediction that writers may soon become the highest paid members of modern marketing teams. Which is great for them because - let's face it - for the last few decades there have been a massive surplus of writers and a shortage of decent paying careers for them.

Writers Needed

Writers are just so incredibly valuable! Let's walk through some basic math here: Let's say you get 200 readers for each of your blog articles because you've been writing consistently and doing a decent-but-not-awesome job. Let's say you have a 5% visit-to-lead conversion rate which is - again - decent but not astounding, so you're getting 10 leads per blog article. Then let's say you have a 5% close rate so you get one customer from every two articles. Let's continue pulling random numbers out of the air to illustrate my train of thought and say you have an average customer life-time-value (A.K.A. LTV) of, oh, $500. My fuzzy math says you make roughly $250 revenue per article! (don't bother trolling the comments arguing about the math - I just wanted to illustrate how we calculate the ROI of blogging).

Nowadays you can expect to pay about $30-$40 for a pretty good blog article. That's a pretty amazing ROI! Way higher than most people see with PPC and unfathomably higher than most people see with outbound marketing such as direct mail. You can see why I think that that price will self-regulate itself upwards as more sophisticated companies invest in blogging and a higher quality of blogger emerges.

Right now, though, there's a shortage of really great writers who can take often ambiguous customer specifications and create a high velocity of educational, valuable, persona-oriented content that generates leads for customers.

And I want them all.

So here's the deal: We're going to launch a contest to find some awesome diamonds in the rough - writers who have all the qualities that we're looking for and want to be part of something big. So we're going to launch a contest with a prize pool of $2,000 and three full-time writing positions with us to find you. I know you're out there. In the immortal words of Maroon 5: I know I don't know you - but I want you so bad.

Click the button below here to go to the contest landing page, learn more, and register to participate!

 

Image credit: freedigitalphotos.net/thaikrit

Comments

Sam, 
 
You make an excellent point and I'm in complete agreement with you. GOOD writing -- crisp, clear, creative, concise but substantial -- is hard to find, much less produce.  
 
The mental muscles responsible for lexical creativity and velocity need to be worked out in order to grow and reach optimal operational capacity, just like other muscles.  
 
Hats off to you and the IMA team for highlighting the value of the anonymous, hardworking writer that builds the words that build brands and businesses.  
 
Hats off for putting forth this challenge and opportunity for the many talented wordsmiths out there who are just looking for a shot.  
 
As Copyblogger's Brian Clark says: "The Writer Runs This Show" (http://www.copyblogger.com/the-writer-runs-this-show/)
Posted @ Monday, November 05, 2012 12:37 PM by Michael Campos
PS -- forgot to mention: Finding a talented writer who understands how to write blogs is even harder. 
 
Creating keyword-rich content that speaks to the correct buyer persona is an art unto itself that takes time, practice and insight to master. 
 
Posted @ Monday, November 05, 2012 12:41 PM by Michael Campos
Your comments nailed our attitudes Michael. Hopefully you and a hundred more like you enter the contest!
Posted @ Monday, November 05, 2012 1:59 PM by Inbound Marketing Agents
All well and good to outsource your SMM to experts. But, like never jobbing out affiliate work, why would you pay "experts" who job out your jobs. Doesn't work in ground transportation and doesn't work in Blogging.
Posted @ Tuesday, November 06, 2012 11:32 AM by Pat Charla
Of course, social media and blogging are best done by those familiar with a company's customers. However, without a content strategy backing it, a social media strategy won't bring as much value. If you can't create content, you can't effectively engage in social media marketing. 
 
For those without a large organization of marketers - specifically writers which is a learned skill - being able to define a buyer persona and have an agency aid you in creating content allows you to solve the volume problem while controlling the quality problem and powering a social media strategy as well. 
 
Thanks for the comment Pat!
Posted @ Tuesday, November 06, 2012 11:36 AM by Inbound Marketing Agents
Sam, this article says it all. I'm moving in the right direction! Thanks for teaching me all this conversing stuff! | Erik
Posted @ Saturday, November 17, 2012 2:34 PM by Erik Ramaekers
I've been writing and producing an "e-column" for the past 12 years,mainly for a long running veterans site. Two years ago I launched my own site(above)to see if there was an interest for my brand of Op-Ed. It appears to be developing a modest but growing following. 
I've kept the 'column" format as opposed to just "blog", because I feel the former has more journalistic weight than the latter.Also,I'm trying to present a "street" perspective rather than expertise or punditry. So I combine a slyly satirical style with an occasional cafrtoon alterego as a visual punchline.  
How that might qualify as "blogging" I'm not certain. If you'c care to take a look at the site, and let me know your views of its content...will much appreciate it. TKU 
Posted @ Friday, November 23, 2012 5:23 PM by W.R.Taylor
W.R. Taylor: It still qualifies as "blogging" or content creation. The more content you create on your site, whether it's a classic blog like ours or a column, the more context you give the search engines as to what they should rank you for.
Posted @ Tuesday, November 27, 2012 8:36 AM by Inbound Marketing Agents
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