When a company elects to implement an inbound marketing plan, the marketing team usually starts off very excited about attracting leads with tactics like business blogging and eBook publishing. But twelve months later, it’s not uncommon to find the marketers exhausted of the process, and sometimes, they’ve even stopped writing completely.
It’s a huge problem, especially since inbound marketing is a strategy built for long-term, compounded effects. Without blogging and regular content creation, there’s no fuel attracting new visitors and contacts, and your pipeline of leads for sales quickly dries up.
So why, then, do marketers stop blogging? Is it the writing? The work it takes to edit and publish? What’s the core issue at play here?
Ideas: Without ‘Em, You Won’t Continue Blogging
There’s nothing particularly difficult about writing blog articles or managing a blog publication process, but one thing is certain: without ideas, everything about blogging becomes much more difficult.
When we ask businesses about what’s preventing them from maintaining successful blogs, it always comes back to keeping an effective editorial calendar well-packed with ideas, backup ideas, and evergreen content that ensures regular publishing.
Especially when you’ve been blogging a while, idea development can be difficult because it feels like you’ve already written on all the relevant topics in your area.
When you’re faced with the dilemma of not having enough good writing ideas, we diagnose the issue as one of three problems:
1. You Don’t Actually Believe in Blogging's Power
Even if you’ve fully adopted inbound marketing and are excited about it’s potential, there’s still the potential that you don’t really believe each blog published will attract more leads. If you haven’t bought in to the value of blogging, then there’s no way you’ll prioritize the process.
We find that lack of buy-in is a big problem at the tactical level. Especially if you’re in a leadership role, it’s critical that you see the inherent value in blogging, just as you see the overall value in an intelligent, logical marketing plan.
2. You Aren’t Reading Enough
Most people don’t understand that blogging isn’t just a writing process; it’s a way of understanding your role as a marketer. When you publish content, you need to become invested in the context that surrounds your blog articles. In other words, you have to read blogs as much as you write them.
Reading blog articles and other sources of information, like trade publications, is critical to developing ideas because:
you’ll realize that your competitors write better and more interesting stuff than you do, and
most ideas can be rehashed and repurposed as long as there’s variation in opinion and perspective on the subject.
Reading gives writers perspective, and it also makes them better writers on the whole. If you’re not reading regularly, then it’s a good place to start in troubleshooting your blog topic problems.
3. Your Team Doesn’t Have a Blog Manager
If you didn’t find your blog idea problem in the previous two sections, then most likely, it’s because you don’t have a real blog manager—somebody appointed or anointed to take the blog as his/her specific responsibility.
There’s nothing like perceived responsibility to help foster ideation when it comes to blog writing. As a blog manager myself, I’ve found that because I’m dedicated to publishing our blog day in and day out, the ideas keep flowing.
No matter the specific constraints that are hurting your blog efforts, remember the importance of content creation in driving leads for your company. Without content, visitors won’t be attracted to your site, and it’s unlikely your forms will do much to persuade visitors to convert. The value of your blog will only increase in time if you continue, so if you find yourself in the twelfth month of blogging and the idea well is dry, focus on getting the blog restocked because this time next year, your marketing metrics will thank you for it.