This is a question we got from one of our leads, and we think its one that's worth answering in a blog post. Our lead was planning on having an article database on his website, and wanted to know how different that was from a blog, and if a blog was better. Essentially, they are two different things, and we would suggest that both be done as the articles and the blog can serve different purposes.
The Article Database
The article database our lead was talking about was something like a resource center, where visitors can view a series of 10, 15, 20 articles at their leisure. A resource center doesn't have to be just articles, but an article database is essentially a resource center (resource center is also a much better name, and might get you more traffic because of it. People don't necessarily want articles, but they do want resources.) The biggest difference between this and a business blog is that the article database/resource center is, for the most part, static. You'll put all your articles, white papers, ebooks and what not there, and that's it. You might add something new to it every now and then, but visitors don't go there with the expectation that there will be something new for them. However, with the resource center, you can much more easily convert the traffic into leads by having them fill out a form before they can view the article or read the white paper.
The Business Blog
However, a business blog has that exact expectation, as a good business blog ought to be publishing at least twice a week. People visit regularly hoping to find fresh content and to learn something new. A business blog can also promote those articles and other resources in that database, while expanding on those topics in new ways. For example, our business blog could cover some new statistics or research about business blogging, and at the end of the post, we can talk about our "How to Blog" ebook or our list of 101 business blog ideas. That way, those who want the news can get the news, while those who want to learn more can learn more. Also, business blogging is better for SEO since is fresh, quality content on a regular basis (which search engines love) versus the resource center, which is better for lead generation.
But, I Can't Do Both!
If taking care of a resource center and business blog seems like too much, then start with the business blog. The main reason is that with the business blog, you can over time create the content that can become part of the resource center. Take 10 to 20 blog posts and turn them into an ebook, or use the business blog to build your own knowledge base, so that this knowledge can be turned into case studies and white papers that go more in-depth into topics. As previously stated, a business blog is better for SEO and getting found online, so make sure that you are doing those well, before trying to do something with all that traffic, like turning them into leads.
That's essentially the difference between an article database and a business blog. Yes, in a sense, a business blog is also an article database, but because it's always changing, there's flexibility there to cover topics that may need to be covered right away. An article database can't cover breaking news quickly, or address a customer pain point like a business blog can. However, an article database is much more evergreen, and the content that should be there should be as good and relevant today as it is a year from now or even five years from now. That's the difference, and because of the difference, do both if you can. If not, then start with the business blog and work your way up.
Want help in building your business blog, your resource center, or both? Then contact Stirring Media, LLC today for a free consultation! Click the button below to get started!