With the rise of video and podcasting, you might be forgiven for thinking that blogging is dead and no longer an effective marketing channel. Like when technology took a more important role in our lives, there was an assumption that all print publications would disappear.  Now that video content is having its time there has been some speculation that blogging could soon become a thing of the past. So, are Blogs dead?


Not even close in our view. Blogs continue to be extremely valuable for lead generation, brand awareness, and SEO. And they’re still popular among consumers. A HubSpot study found that 60% of people read a blog at least once a week. So, blogs won’t be out of marketers’ toolbox anytime soon. In all fairness however, this question surrounding blogs is not without reason. Google Trends shows that in the last five years, the interest in blogs has steadily declined worldwide with video rising in popularity and surpassing blogs in searches.


However, blogs are still viable marketing channels with recent reports showing there are more than 600 million blogs  out of 1.9 billion websites worldwide. Collectively these blogs generate 6 million posts daily. Blogging is still considered a top marketing channel often allowing brands to increase their traffic and accelerate sales. It has the added ability to elevate a brand’s position in the market and unlock new opportunities.


Is it enough though just to have a blog these days?  The fact is that it’s a lot more complex to win at blogging now, but if you can master it, it’s worth the investment. You need to consistently create content that is more valuable than your competition’s content. You need to be an SEO expert to get your articles ranking on page one of Google, and you need a distribution strategy to promote your content across all the channels your audience likes to consume content on


Transparency is a bigger responsibility, especially as consumers are paying closer attention to a brand’s values and its stance on social issues.  You need to think about how people see your brand compared to your competition. Everyone has their own USP and what they want to put forward, but what users do is compare.


Blogs vs. Other Marketing Channels

Now that other content marketing channels – namely video and podcasting – have surpassed blogs, will they soon become redundant? Well, it all depends on the user personas you’re targeting. But even as other platforms grow, blogs still offer many advantages. Podcasting is not without its own set of limitations. There are plenty of discoverability and audience growth challenges. At this point, blogs have a pretty well-dusted playbook for scaling. That’s not true for podcasts.


A company can use its likely limited resources to invest in a blog that will basically give consistent, easily measurable, and reliable performance. Blogs also have a direct line to the company’s bottom line, podcasts do not. There’s no reason to choose between two platforms though, if you have the bandwidth to tackle both. If it aligns with your user personas, you can engage your audience from several angles. Creating a blog constructed of articles around the benefits of your product will be helpful. Having a video showcasing its use or how to install it would be beneficial for your audience.


Also, it’s hard to compare it to blogs as each platform serves different purposes. Social content doesn’t always have the shelf life or the discoverability of blog posts. It’s more about consistently meeting your audience where they are, in the right moments, engaging with them one-on-one, and establishing trust via community building. Social media can be a great way to amplify your blog posts. And vice versa, blog posts can serve as inspiration for social content. If using both, pull the most compelling points from your blog posts, creating social-first content, and using it to drive traffic back to your blog.


With all that said, blogs don’t come without their disadvantages with high drop-off rates often seen in blog posts. Blogs lack the interactivity that many crave due to its nature as written content. This challenges blog writers to hook their readers in a few short sentences without having the benefit of special effects or audio engineers available to their video and podcast creating counterparts.


What it often comes down to is your brand goals and which channels will help you meet them. Podcasts, for example, are better for branding while blogs serve better for top-of-the-funnel engagement. Blog posts are an acquisition juggernaut. There’s a clear path that any seasoned marketer can follow. Podcasts, however, best serve as a brand opportunity. You wouldn’t measure a series of blog posts on their brand uplift ability, just like you wouldn’t measure a podcast show’s lead generation. That is unless you like gray hairs and a serious lack of sleep.


Why Blogs Are Still Impactful

From an investment perspective, blogs may be a better long-term investment for lead generation. You could allocate a budget to hire a full-time writer, SEO expert, and conversion rate optimization (CRO) specialist to work on a blog. By combining those skill sets, you’re going to be able to create a blog that drives organic traffic to a website and converts it into leads all year long.

Conversely, you could put the same budget into an advertising campaign and maybe get a couple of thousand leads over the course of the ad campaign. But once the campaign ends, so does the lead flow.


Blogging can be a great lead source long after posts are published.  Organic traffic is more important than ever. Unlike paid traffic, which stops coming in the second your budget runs out, organic traffic is mostly self-sustaining after you’ve put in the time and effort to create a blog post. Most Content Management Systems (CMS) have SEO tools integrated into their platforms, which makes it easier to optimize your posts.


Blogging can also be valuable in shaping a brand’s product positioning. They  are still one of the best channels to create narratives around a product. They can offer the opportunity to address trends we see in the market, how those trends impact the reader, and how the product might be able to help them meet that trend successfully. They’re also great for telling customer success stories.


When using your blog to market your product, the content doesn’t have to be promotional. When you establish yourself as a thought leader and gain the trust of your audience, they will organically look into your products and services.


With that said, it’s going to take more than good content to have a successful blog. Growth without a goal isn’t going to help your business – if 10,000 people are reading your blog, but none of them fit your persona, that’s not going to do anything for your company. Focus on something attainable, like generating new contacts, and make sure every post you’re putting out has that goal in mind.


One of the biggest mistakes brands make is creating content only for people at the decision-making stage. With so many stages between reading a blog and making a purchase, marketers should have posts geared at users in every stage with corresponding offers.


From an SEO perspective, brands may also struggle with generating traffic because they’re thinking blog first, link building second. There can be a tendency to consider ‘blogging’ and ‘link building’ as two different disciplines. First, you might write the blog posts, then think about how to earn backlinks to them. Instead, include linkable assets into a regular content calendar, alongside other types of articles that are maybe designed for generating organic or social media traffic.


Despite the many benefits, blogging isn’t always the best strategy for every brand. Why? Well, what if your ideal user persona  doesn’t read blogs? What if they prefer emails instead?


Some brands have great email communication and workflows where they provide people with downloadable offers where they don’t have to go somewhere else to get the information, it’s just in their inbox straight away. You don’t necessarily need a blog as long as you’re offering something in exchange. I think the blog has always been that: Offer something for free in exchange for that user interaction. So, in that case, blogs wouldn’t exactly be dead, more so irrelevant.


Marketing Is Alive & Kicking

Looking at things from a broader perspective, blogs are just an extension of marketing and based on recent data, marketing is still very influential. That applies to both traditional strategies and digital initiatives. In 2022, content marketing generated over $63 billion in revenue worldwide!


There’s a reason why the world’s leading brands continue to invest millions every month in marketing and communication even though they’re already household names. Marketing is an investment, and if you make an investment that is rooted in a strategic plan — that investment should return dividends for years (maybe decades) to come.


Blogging Is Far From Dead

The key takeaway is that while not all marketing tactics work for every brand, it’s unlikely that blogs will stop being valuable to brands in the foreseeable future. So for now, blogs, you can rest and step off the chopping block.


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