According to a new report released by a catalogue and direct marketing specialist, only 12% of UK businesses currently use a blog as part of their overall marketing strategy, whilst only 4% are looking to start one over the course of the next year.
More than 300 UK organisations were questioned as part of research into corporate marketing strategies. Respondents to the study were drawn from a diverse mix of businesses, both B2B and B2C, which spanned multiple industry sectors.
Ian Simpson, managing director of C4B, said: "Blogs are becoming increasingly important in the digital age, but it seems that many businesses are failing to grasp this. When it comes to marketing a business online, we’re increasingly enthral to Google. The simple fact is you have to play by its rules if you want to find yourself anywhere prominent in the search rankings."
Simpson continued: "A regularly updated blog plays a massive part in the success of a business’s SEO strategy. Frequently updated content, containing key words and phrases relating to the services that you offer makes you stand out when it comes to the complex Google algorithms that determine search results. Producing relevant content on your website increases the chances of you coming top of these results."
The study also found that when looking at sales delivery only 2% of businesses believed that their blog helped to deliver sales, compared to the 24% who attributed sales directly to the success of networking.
"Whilst people might not necessarily read a blog and decide to buy your products or services, a blog contributes considerably to your overall brand," Simpson said. "You can establish an authoritative voice within your industry by projecting your views via your blog. If what you say is of value to your target demographic then it will help to improve the general influence of your brand."
The results of the study additionally revealed that only 4% of businesses had any plans to incorporate a blog as part of their on-going strategy in the next 12 months.
Simpson concluded: "The fact that so few businesses plan to put emphasis on their company blog in the near future, shows that true understanding of the influence of blogs isn’t widespread. A blog is something that you can manage directly and straightforwardly and at a relatively low cost. In a competitive market, businesses really should look to embrace the potential of a blog and use all of the tools at their disposal if they want to get ahead of the competition."