Reflections on a Year in Blogging
By Sarah Malcolm, COO of The Content Funnel
Our TCF team writes several thousand blogs in a year. Our blogs, client blogs, and guest blogs. We’re not alone. Millions of blogs published this year. As we produce and read content by others, we’re keeping up with the latest market trends. We’ve noticed some shifts in marketing world regarding blogging over the last twelve months. For instance:
#1. Is blogging under attack or losing its value?
The content marketing world is seeing some chatter regarding blogging’s ongoing value as a strategy. Most of this stems from where we are in blogging’s life cycle. Let’s call it the mid-life crisis. It’s no longer new, hip, and cool. It seems like everyone’s been there, done that. Running a successful blog requires legwork, and today we face more competition for attention. Blog Tyrant did a survey and found 69 percent of bloggers are worried about the lack of traffic or readers.
None of that means blogging has lost its value. On the contrary, more of our clients are recognizing its value–and that they need help. The same Blog Tyrant survey found 80.5 percent of bloggers recognize the most important thing to success is writing amazing content! And if you don’t trust them, industry influencer Neil Patel calls blogging critical to online marketing.
#2. People want more details
Spinning, or the practice of reworking a blog without saying anything new, is dying. Readers don’t want to constantly read that same five tips over and over. Blog readers are more discerning than you think. The best performing content:
Presents hard data or statistics from trustworthy sources
Gets personal using anecdotes or interviews
Dives deep into a particular topic
Sure, those fast read How-to’s and list-type blogs still perform well with traffic, but will those readers be your most loyal advocates?
#3. Must be clever with those headlines
Headline writing is so tricky. Truly, it is an art form. You have to woo the reader to click through while conveying enough detail to show up in the search results in the first place. That’s probably why hundreds of blogs focus exclusively on how to craft a great title. There’s about just as many title generators. I appreciate a good title when I see one.
#4. Blogs are growing longer
The word count debate continues to rage, but look back to reflection no. 2. As people demand more research and data-backed content, there’s been a shift to long form content, or that over 1,000 words. You can read about the benefits of long form blog content here.
What’s your take on how blogging has shifted in 2018? We believe blogging has matured and will continue delivering tremendous value in the near future. If you’d like to talk more about blogging strategy, give us a shout.