Content Marketing vs Blogging: 3 Key Differences You Should Know

traffic Apr 02, 2019

Wondering what's the difference between blogging and content marketing? In this post, we'll explain 3 key differences between content marketing vs blogging.

When it comes to digital marketing, there are a lot of buzzwords floating around, used by marketing professionals and business owners to describe their various strategies.

From “SEO” to “algorithms”, “automation” to “influencer marketing”, it can be a challenge to keep up with the latest marketing trends and terms, and to know what differentiates one practice from another.

In this guide, we’ll be taking a closer look at two of the most commonly confused marketing methods: content marketing and blogging.

Some of the questions we’ll be answering include:

  • What are the major differences between content marketing and blogging?
  • Which of these methods should your business be investing in?
  • What are the benefits associated with both content marketing and blogging?
  • What are some first steps you can take to begin a content marketing or blogging strategy?
  • What are some valuable, credible resources you can use when developing these strategies?

By answering these questions, it is our hope that business owners and other professionals will be able to clearly distinguish the unique benefits of both content marketing and blogging, as well as more easily discern when to use each respective approach.

Let's dive in...

3 Key Differences Between Content Marketing and Blogging

1. Content Marketing is an Umbrella Term

In a nutshell, content marketing refers to the process of creating shareable content. Thus any text, visuals, or information a business uses to communicate with their target audience is content, and serves their content marketing strategy.

Examples of content types that can be used to facilitate content marketing include:

  • Videos
  • Infographics
  • eBooks
  • Newsletters
  • Webinars
  • Press releases
  • Podcasts
  • Advertisements

And last, but certainly not least, blogs!

2. Blogging is a Form of Content Marketing

Within the category of content marketing, there are numerous tools that can be used. Blogging is one of those tools— and an effective one, at that.

In fact, marketers who prioritize blogging efforts are 13X more likely to see positive ROI.

Thus, blogging is a tool that business owners from all industries should be availing of.

3. Each Method Has Its Own Unique Benefits

Content marketing is one of the most effective ways to boost the visibility and recognition of your brand. In a world where people almost always have some sort of electronic device with them at all times, and where people are continuously bombarded with advertisements, it’s imperative that businesses meet their potential customers where they are— on the world wide web.

In the digital age, the more present your brand is on marketing channels like social media, the more credible and familiar your business will seem to your target market.

Content marketing is the least-intrusive way to establish visibility and build a lasting reputation, since it is entirely based around providing your target audience with information they will find valuable, without any sort of monetary exchange or major commitment.

Blogging, on the other hand, is used to create much more specific results. For example, blogging is an essential part of securing better search engine rankings.

By including high-quality keywords in your blog posts, and optimizing your copy, you can control how favorably search engine like Google view your content— eventually leading to better rankings.

Blogging can also be used as part of a link-building strategy, since copywriters can include links to high-authority sites within their posts. In return, these sites are often willing to reciprocate by sharing the post or including a link to the published post on their site as well. Alternatively, business owners can also write a guest post for a high-ranking site and include a link back to their company website within the post, which also helps to boost search engine rankings and make your site more visible.

The bottom line? Content marketing is an all-inclusive strategy, while blogging is a distinct content marketing method that is used to generate specific results.

Professional Blogging vs "Hobby Blogging"

One common misconception content creators have is that as long as a blog is active, and posts are being made regularly, their desired results will be achieved.

Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.

Many bloggers begin sharing their content online without optimizing it or promoting it using industry best practices. In a nutshell, their blog functions as a place where they simply share thoughts and information, either on one specific topic, or a range of topics.

The key here is that hobby bloggers don’t use proven strategies to generate an income from their blog.

Professional bloggers, on the other hand, use digital marketing techniques to optimize their blogs and advertise their content to larger audiences.

Some of the marketing methods pro bloggers use to generate an income from their blogs include:

  • Email marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • SEO
  • Link building
  • Paid advertising (Google AdWords, Facebook Ads, etc.)
  • Guest blogging
  • Influencer outreach

Going Pro: 3 Steps Every Hobby Blogger Should Take Before Monetizing their Blog

If you are a hobby blogger and are looking to take your online content to the next level and start making money, there will be some foundational work to do before you will see your results take off...

1. Begin Researching Your Competition

One of the most impactful ways to set your blog up for success is to identify any content gaps in your niche and fill them.

What information might your target audience be interested in that doesn’t already exist online? Or is only available from a limited number of resources? How can you present new information on these topics in a fresh and engaging way?

Tools like SEMRush allow bloggers to analyze the keywords and topics that their competitors are posting content about, giving them a clearer idea of what topics are already highly saturated online, and which ones are less popular.

Strategically choosing topics to write about is a simple, straightforward way for bloggers to rank more quickly and secure higher click-through rates.

2. Give Precedence to Long-Form Content

Did you know that the average length of blog posts that rank number one on search engine results is 2,416 words?

Or that posts with more than 1,500 words receive 68.1 percent more tweets and 22.6 percent more Facebook likes than posts under 1,500 words?

But long-form content doesn’t just benefit the blogger— it also resonates with readers, who prefer detailed, value-adding posts rather than short, fluff pieces that don’t offer anything they haven’t already seen before.

They key to producing high-quality, worthwhile long-form content is to focus on solving a problem or answering a very specific question.

You want your readers to know exactly why they are clicking your article, and immediately get to work providing them with the information they’re interested in.

The more educational, prolific, and gripping your long-form posts are, the faster you’ll see the results you’re looking for.

3. Establish an Email Subscriber List Immediately

Collecting emails from your readers is arguably the most effective way to begin making money off your blog.

People who have already taken the time to click on your blog have shown an interest in your content. And it is essential to capture their contact information while you have their attention if you want to move them further along your sales cycle.

Remember, email has higher conversion rates per session than search and social combined, meaning each email list subscriber you gain increases the likelihood that you will make money more than any other promotion method.

We recommend reading this article on how to turn your email newsletter into a conversion machine. It offers several proven strategies that professional bloggers use to generate a profit from their online publications.

Getting Started

One of the most incredible aspects of living in today’s world is that the information you need is always at your fingertips.

If you are interested in implementing a content marketing or blogging strategy for your business, there are tons of handy guides and resources on the web.

To assist you with getting started, we’ve decided to share some of our favorites.

For those looking to establish a content marketing strategy, we recommend:

For those who are ready to begin a company blog, we recommend:

And stepping up your blog image game so you can attract readers with eye-grabbing visuals.

Ellan Dineen is the Marketing Associate at Design Wizard. When she’s not hard at work in the Marketing Department, Ellan can be found en route to foreign lands with a book in her hand and a podcast in her ear. With a Master’s in English and Diploma in Social Media Marketing, she knows the importance of staying up-to-date with the industry’s latest trends and insights and is keen to pass these tips on to her readers.

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