Writing vs blogging vs podcasting; which is the best fit for your business?

Writing, blogging, and podcasting are all highly effective marketing channels in their own right. Choosing the best strategy is less challenging when one has a clear idea of one’s short and long-term priorities and current constraints.
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Content marketing, if done right, allows a brand to create an identity in a saturated market to make potential clients notice them. With new technological advancements, more ingenious ways of marketing have emerged in the recent years, changing the way brands operate.

Blogging, writing, and podcasting have become indispensable quivers in a brand’s marketing toolkit. But when there are factors like limited marketing budgets or resources to consider, how do you decide which content strategy is the best for your business?

Putting things in perspective

Firstly, it is essential to clarify that both the written and spoken word have their own place in the world of marketing:

●      Blogging is considered vital by almost 60% of marketers all over.

●   Return on Investment is considerably high when companies prioritise blogging compared to cases where companies don’t.

●    With over 70 million blog posts being published on WordPress every month, blogging is still a largely popular medium for reaching an audience.

While blogging has been the mainstay of content marketing for the past two decades, podcasts have gained traction in the past two years:

●      Podcasts listeners over the world have grown from 274.8 million in 2019 to 424 million in 2022, and is expected to grow at a rate of over 9%.

●      Young listeners from the age of 12 to 35 are the largest growing demographic tuning into podcasts.

When it comes to writing, and we’re considering newsletters, emails, and general articles, here’s what we gather:

●      Emails have an impressive return on investment at $36 against every dollar spent.

●      It’s the most-popular means of marketing among small businesses due to low investment.

●      Allows subscriber segmentation, personalisation, and automation.

Writing, blogging, and podcasting have their own advantages. All of them penetrate the target demographic and engender a sense of community, support and fealty among the customers and the business. But it is important to carefully weigh the pros and cons of each of these strategies.

Blogging: Pros and Cons

Pros

  1. Directing traffic: How do people find a particular business from the plethora of sites already listed on Google? The answer is SEO optimisation. Writing and publishing blogs regularly with carefully chosen and placed keywords can grant a website the visibility it needs in order to jump from Page 5 of a Google search to Page 1. A good blog post will not only catch the eye of the reader but will be instrumental in converting their curiosity into genuine interest and action for your business. Creating relevant content drives organic traffic to your site, which has a higher Click-Through Rate (CTR) at 4.23% as against buying Google ads and creating inorganic traffic.
  1. Lets a business connect with its audience: While people can listen to podcasts and the opinions of experts, they cannot, in real-time, question them, or ask for clarification. Blogs, on the other hand, allow readers to comment on them, wherein they can raise issues and ask for clarification, essentially providing the opportunity for interaction.
  1. Showcase your expertise: Blogs can be a great way of exhibiting one’s knowledge of a subject matter. The more detailed the blog, the greater the chance of the business being viewed favourably by the reader. 

Cons

  1. Stiff competition: A Google search for keywords can find millions of results. That is just a glimpse of how much content there already is in the market, competing with which is a tall order.
  2. Time consuming: Writing and publishing blogs can be a time-consuming affair. The gestation period for a good blog can be anywhere between a week to a month.

Podcast: Pros and Cons

Pros

  1. Lend your brand a voice: Both literally and figuratively. Podcasts are highly engaging since they have a greater human component inherent in them. People connect with other people talking rather than reading words on a screen. They allow greater potential for expressing the brand’s essence with humour, quirkiness, expertise, etc.
  2. Save time: Podcasts, being auditory, can be accessed anywhere, while doing anything. It is not uncommon to find people tuning into their favourite episodes during a long, leisurely walk, or while commuting to and from work, making them easier to consume and imbibe.
  3. Perfect for long-form content: Long, wordy blogs are rather intimidating to a generation whose staple is 20 second shorts and reels on social media, so shifting long-form content to podcasts might not be a bad option for a business.

Cons

  1. Technically complicated: Producing quality podcasts not only requires content but good sound production, equipment and mixing tools, which can be complicated and expensive.
  2. Absence of a call-to-action: Blogs have the advantage of presenting clearly a call-to-action button at the end of the blog, or any place in-between. Podcasts cannot have a direct CTA button.

Writing: Pros and Cons

Pros

  1. Easy on the pocket: While podcasting requires investment in terms of equipment, and blogging might require one to hire a content creator, sending emails and newsletters is relatively cheaper. For instance, it takes less than $200 to send out emails and newsletters to more than a million people. Hiring a digital marketing agency to do so would also cost only about $500/month. Moreover, the returns are exceptional at 4300%.
  1. Most tried and tested way of reaching out: Emailers can be considered one of the earliest media of digital marketing. It is a tried and tested method that has, with some creative tweaking, stood the test of time.

Cons

  1. Spam: What keeps digital marketers up at night is the dread of their newsletter ending up in the graveyard of marketing: the Spam folder. It is essential to take the necessary steps such that the newsletters one works on do not end up being ignored. This requires expertise and experience.
  1. Time and effort: Emailers, being cheap and easy to use, are utilised by many. One has to put in several hours of work to make their emails stand out from others and to find the most suitable subject line to the best newsletter font.

What is best for your business?

Choosing from writing, blogs. and podcasts is contingent on several factors. Firstly, budget. Businesses just starting out can initially invest in writing or blogging, since it is relatively cheaper than producing podcasts, and are more visible. They can later diversify to podcasts as well. Secondly, what are they selling? If they’re selling a highly specialised, niche product, blogging would be the go-to, since interested customers can directly take action after going through their blogs. Service providers can look towards sending personalised newsletters to create a community around their services.

Short-term goals of the business matter as well. If a business is looking to bump their search engine optimisation, the clear-cut winner is blogging. Lastly, demographic - Those looking to tap into the younger generations can think of investing a bit more in podcasts since they’re gaining massive popularity amongst the youth. 

In conclusion

As mentioned before, writing, blogging, and podcasting are all highly effective marketing channels in their own right. All three have their own characteristic advantages and disadvantages in terms of costs, penetration and time. Choosing the best strategy is less challenging when one has a clear idea of one’s short and long-term priorities and current constraints. Lastly, it always pays off to experiment. So, businesses should not pigeonhole themselves, instead, dabble in varying mediums to find out what is working for them.

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