So I admit it….I took my eye off the ball. I was blogging regularly and really working to enhance my brand. But, then client work got in the way and I committed that cardinal sin of working solely “in” my business instead of “on” it. So whilst I was busy encouraging my clients to assiduously harness the content I had lovingly written for them, and singing to them the virtues of content marketing my own blogging page started lagging behind. But, then I suppose even I have my flaws…
So I wanted to come back with a bang – a blog that enticed, tantalised and teased, but nothing caught my attention. So I took a step back and thought about the pain points of my clients – and that’s when I had my epiphany, sadly there was no actual lightbulb as I was sat in Pret a Manager nursing my 2-hour old coffee, but nevertheless I felt pretty proud of myself.
Because so often clients come to me and request my blogging services which is, of course, fantastic. And my first question is always “what is your aim?” To which 9 times out of 10 – they reply, looking at me as if I just fell off the side of the earth, “to rank on page 1 of Google…” duh – the duh is silent, but clearly implied.
So firstly, let’s get one thing clear. It is extremely difficult to rank on the first page of Google, and particularly in the top two results. Even with regular content (and I mean once/twice a week) your website needs to be fully optimised and not only that, but you need to know your competition. For example if you are say….a humble freelance copywriter with a passion for words, but a commitment to fair prices and thus a limited marketing budget, you probably can’t compete with the giants in the marketing space and so, for this hypothetical freelance writer, her blogs, however engaging they may be, will never help her rank on Google. And I will return shortly as to the other reasons you could be blogging.
Conversely, if you are niche product acting in a local space then you may well be able to rank for Google. For example, if you are renting out Apple products in Manchester it is far easier to rank than if you are say… a Financial Advisor in London– a scarily crowded market. But, even then there are a number of other factors to consider, which are outside the perimeters of this blog, but which will affect the power of content on your SEO ranking.
So….the next question is if blogging doesn’t necessarily put you on page 1 of Google then why on earth should I bother….
Well first and foremost people buy from people and nothing helps establish your brand, personality and tone more clearly than a well written blog. Helping to set you apart from your competition and demonstrating to your customers that you really do care can help improve the effectiveness of your website.
Not only that, but it can also establish you as a “thought leader” in your industry – someone who has a firm grasp on what is relevant in your industry – helping to establish your credibility and that all important trust factor.
Blogs are also a fantastic asset to share on social media, and can really work to enhance your presence – although as an aside they should ideally form part of a concrete social media strategy rather than just being used ad hoc (she says knowing that she does not practice what she is preaching.)
So really the moral of this rather extended story is that there is far more to blogging than SEO, and it is always helpful to have a core objective when blogging as it will help you measure your performance and see if blogging really is working for you.
And, of course, if you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to give me a call on 07826 857 882 or drop me a line on Helena@helenabaker.com, and I am always happy to have a free, informal chat over a Chai Latte anywhere in the London area….