Even as demand generation activity begins to pick up, most marketing budgets right now remain tight, and so B2B companies are looking for creative, low-cost ways to drive demand. One of the areas we recommend consistently to our clients is to do more with the corporate blog.
Blogs are historically the province of the PR team, and so they’re not often looked at as a vehicle for driving leads, sales engagement, and revenue. But it doesn’t necessarily take all new content or a massive blog redesign (read: time and money) to have even the most PR-centric blog start generating real value.
Here are our top 5 suggestions for changes you can implement quickly and easily:
1. Optimize post titles for search and engagement (and re-title older content if you need to.) If someone reads the current title in a search result, is there a reason to click? (Don’t assume that people reading individual posts are navigating from the main blog. Most will link from search or social media.)
2. Market subscriptions aggressively, and not just on the home page. Every blog post should have a prominent link to subscribe via email and/or social media channels (ex: LinkedIn). This is one of the most effective ways to convert organic blog traffic to sales leads that you can then nurture over time. In turn, emailing blog content on a regular cadence – perhaps as part of an ongoing nurture stream — is a proven method for increasing page views and acquiring new subscribers
5 Easy Ways to Have Your Corporate Blog Drive Measurable Demand
3. Link keywords within blog content to relevant pages on your main Website. If you consistently link specific keywords to Web pages that you want to rank highly for those same terms – even if the content is something you posted months ago – you’ll improve page authority, and thus organic ranking, for that Web page. Just know that SEO takes time, so don’t expect results overnight. (Tip: tagging blog posts consistently, even after the fact, can also contribute to improved search results.)
4. Include links to gated content. There are two primary ways to do this: one is to include a link to relevant content at the end of the post, as in “For more information on this topic, check out our free white paper …” (This is also something that can be done retroactively, to older posts that might be generating a good volume of organic traffic.) The second method is to have links to gated content in the sidebar of each and every blog post as well as the home page.
5. Make sure you can measure the blog’s contribution. At a minimum, that means attributing content downloads and subscriptions to the blog via your marketing automation platform. Then when you begin to show leads, pipeline and revenue, you’ll have the ammunition for greater investment and maybe even a wholesale blog redesign focused on driving demand. (For more comprehensive social media measurement, consider a solution like Oktopost.)
To view a short, 18-minute presentation on this topic, based on a real-life case study, check out our slidecast: “Getting Leads (and More!) from your Blog”