This is the second of three articles that share findings from The State of Inbound Lead Generation , a new HubSpot report based on statistical analysis of 1,400 customers' inbound marketing activities. The study identifies lead generation best practices based on results from these companies. The report and this article were written by Sophie L. Schmitt.
In the last post , we discussed the strong connection between Google indexed pages and leads. Here, we're taking a look at the significant positive relationship between blogs and leads. More specifically, we're looking at blog usage as well as blog size based on the number of articles available on the blog.
Blogs Need to Reach a Critical Mass of Articles to Generate Leads
We grouped 760+ HubSpot customers who blog into four different categories based on the size of their blogs. When comparing the median customer's monthly lead number in each category, we observed that leads started to grow once blogs offered a critical mass of articles, on the order of 20 to 50 articles .
Customers with blog article numbers above this critical threshold are likely to have enough content to make a significant impact on search engines through additional indexed pages and new keywords with which to associate. In addition, other sites are more likely to link to a blog that offers a steady stream of content . Customers with blogs of 24+ articles are more likely to be committed to updating their blog frequently and, thus, are likely to generate more traffic from referring sites.
The graph also indicates that lead growth has the potential to accelerate for customers who grow blogs beyond the critical threshold . Customers with 52+ blog articles generated median leads that were 77% higher than the median result in the "24-51 article" group. This growth is twice the increase between the prior two groups (30%).
Marketers With Blogs Generate 67% More Leads
Along with blog size, we looked at plain and simple blog usage. We have written about the impact of blog usage on leads before . Here, we compared median leads of customers who blog to those of customers who don't. We looked at leads over a three month period (November '09 through January '10).
As expected, the median customer who blogs generated 67% more leads than the median customer who does not blog, or 15 vs. 9 leads. The results were the same for both B2B and B2C customers in our sample.
This graph also shows that marketers with small blogs (fewer than 10 articles available) generate similar lead results to marketers who choose not to create a blog .
Marketers who are not blogging are leaving leads on the table. Marketers who do blog must invest time and effort in developing a blogging process that ensures there is always a critical mass of articles available to attract visitors who convert to leads. Blogs impact leads because they:
- Grow indexed pages in Google more rapidly than by adding web site pages. As we showed earlier, the more Google indexed pages a site has, the more leads it is likely to obtain .
- Increase the number of keywords marketers rank for in Google . Through blogs, marketers have the opportunity to create unique content that can be different from their web site content. They have the potential to significantly increase the number of keywords they rank highly for in Google.
- Generate inbound links , which are a central factor in Google's organic search ranking algorithm. Other related sites are likely to link to a blog that provides interesting and fresh content.
- Increase repeat visitors . Blogs give visitors a reason to come back and interact with sites.
Read article 1 in this 3-part series.
Want to read more? Download the full State of Inbound Lead Generation report .
Learn how companies are using inbound marketing techniques to generate higher volume and lower cost leads and customers.
Date and time: Wednesday, April 7, 2010 at 1:00pm EDT