Technoriti recently released their 2013 Digital Influencing Report which shows that Blogs rank behind only retail sites and brand sites when it comes to making a purchase decision. Of the consumers surveyed, 31 percent said that blogs were “highly influential” when making a purchase decision ranking just above Facebook at 30.8%
Although the study shows the purchasing influence of blogs ranking higher than other social media networks, brands surveyed report that the 10 percent of their marketing budgets will be going to social media and of that 10 percent, 57 percent will be spent on Facebook marketing while only 6 percent will be spent on Blogs. It is important to note that the report refers to blog spending as directed towards “influencers” as opposed to a brand’s investment in their own blogs.
The report also shows that the 19 percent of digital budgets will go toward search, second only to display advertising at 41 percent.
Business Blogging as the Intersection of Influence, Search and Social
The Technoriti report demonstrates the importance of influencers and blogs but only discusses from the perspective of an ad spend. What it doesn’t get into is the fact that a blog can not only play a huge role in moving a brand’s website up the search engine rankings, it can play the role of a trusted influencer by publishing content that truly informs and helps the target audience. This is especially true when a company or brand learns to utilize the power of content without the need for overt marketing messages.
Add the growing impact of Google+ on search and I predict we will be seeing a big shift in digital marketing expenditures as businesses begin to grasp the power of this coming force. Facebook’s new Graph search might be useful when looking for a bite to eat but Google will remain the place to go for the in-depth research that can influence purchasing decisions.