What do your customers and prospects want to get when they visit your business blog? Blogging is time-intensive, so it’s important to make sure you’re spending your time on the right type of content. While the concept of content curation has gained a lot of traction lately as a way for busy business owners who have blogs to “feed the content beast,” a study by WP Engine reports that the majority (62%) of Americans still want to see original content directly from their favorite brands.
And despite the growth of social media, maintaining a blog is still an effective way to engage with and market to customers. Nearly half (46%) of respondents say they read their favorite brands’ blogs. In fact, 52% would rather go directly to the company website or blog for content about the business, while just 25% prefer to seek out that information on social media and 22% look for it in third-party articles.
What types of content do consumers prefer to read? Tips on using a brand’s products top the list (44%), followed by stories from other customers (34%). Consumers also like to see articles on important issues (27%), research about the company’s industry (16%) and funny stories (12%).
If you never mention your company’s products or services at all because you worry about including too much promotional content on your blog, you can stop worrying. Nearly half (48%) of consumers say it’s important for companies to post brand content on their blog because it’s a way for readers to get up-to-date information. What they don’t like is when brand-related content is blatantly “selling” something or sounds like an ad.
Conversely, if you post on your blog rarely or inconsistently, rely on curated content alone or stop posting altogether, consumers say you’re putting your image at risk. Such actions risk losing your means of communication with customers, looking lazy or irrelevant, and ultimately losing customers to the competition.
The upshot of the study?
- If you’ve started blogging, don’t stop. Consistency matters.
- Make sure at least some of what you post is original content.
- Use a strong “voice” in your original content to convey your business’s brand and personality.
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Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow her on Google+ and Twitter.com/Rieva, and visit her website, SmallBizDaily.com, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.