Blog. It sounds like something that the cat coughed up, but it’s actually a shortening of the term “weblog.” The first of its kind was an online diary written by a fellow named Justin Hall back in 1994.
To know the origin of the blog doesn’t answer the greater question, however: why are blogs important to marketing your senior community? Or marketing in general?
Some content marketers (and even more of their clients) don’t completely understand the benefit of blogging or the difference between news and blogs.
Do you, dear reader, believe that blogs are necessary to successful content marketing? Do you question whether a blog should still be included in your budget, what with Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and many more online platforms clamoring for consumers’ attention?
Whatever your opinion, know this: the blog as a marketing tool is alive and well – and here to stay.
The Numbers Don’t Lie
- More than 152 million blogs exist on the Internet
- A new blog is published every 0.5 seconds
- 77% of web users regularly read blogs
- Companies that blog receive 97% more links to their websites
- A quarter of all websites are blogs
- 55% of marketers say blogging is their top inbound marketing priority
- The COVID pandemic is changing readers’ behavior, and online consumption of written material (as well as products and services) is dramatically increasing
Stats are great, but they don’t tell the whole story of why blogs are so important to sales and marketing.
Here’s what a well-researched, well-written blog that lives on your site can do. But first, “lives on your site” is key. Countless social media platforms attempt to drive traffic to your site, but a blog is owned content consumers can access directly from your URL – and you can be sure it will keep them there longer than a Snapchat ad.
The Almighty SEO
Search engine optimization is the name of the game, and blogs do it best. That’s because content-rich blogs contain keywords and phrases people organically use to search various topics on the web. Search engines (e.g., Google) “crawl” the Internet and rank sites by how well their blogs naturally incorporate these words and phrases and, more importantly, how well they engage their readers and address their needs. The higher the ranking, the more prominent place a site will have on the search engine results page (SERP), and the more likely people will click on that site over another. Blogs also provide ample link-building opportunities, a critical factor of SEO.
A word to the wise, however: search engine algorithms are getting smarter all the time, increasingly able to identify and weed out content that crams in keywords, tags and other metadata solely for the sake of manipulating SEO.
What will never change is the importance of quality content that matters personally to your target audience. That’s what matters to the search engines, too, and that’s what’s going to get eyeballs on your website more than anything else.
Other Powers of Blog
Builds trust in your brand. Whether your blog informs, advocates, educates, supports, entertains, inspires…if it’s relevant to your consumers and has a positive effect on them, they will not only spend more time on your site, they will begin to trust you as a capable answer to their needs.
Establishes you as a thought leader. A well-researched, well-written blog establishes you as an expert in your field. During this time of pandemic disproportionately affecting senior citizens, senior living is particularly in need of an authoritative voice in the move forward during and after COVID-19. Indeed, online media caters to the tiny attention span of most humans, but people reading a blog want a more comprehensive exploration of a subject that interests them. They expect a deeper dive, and they’re likely to come back for more time and again. To that point, timely, regular blogging is key.
Many learn best by reading. There are four basic learning styles: visual, auditory, reading/writing, and kinesthetic. While video has indisputable marketing benefits, many people learn best through the written word. According to one study, learning by reading is the second most common of the four main types.
Blogs Sell, Especially Now
Plain and simple, for all the reasons listed above and more, blogs increase traffic to your site considerably – even exponentially when they’re shared. Especially now during the coronavirus pandemic, people are doing business more and more online, from the safety of their homes. This includes virtual tours of your senior community and greater consumption of your site’s content.
There has never been a more opportune time to understand the importance of blogging to your marketing efforts and to invest in this powerful digital strategy.
Backed by 30 years of marketing and public relations experience in senior living and services, IVY’s team of writers, designers and digital strategists can help you leverage the unique power of blogging – especially now.
Contact us today to find out how blogging and our complete array of services can increase your visibility in the senior living space and PROP up your occupancy.
IVY MARKETING GROUP. COME GROW WITH US.