Unleash the Combined Power of Statistics and Stories in Your Blog

“Every 55 seconds someone in the US develops the disease,” Jason Abady, community engagement manager for the Central Ohio Alzheimer’s Association, let our audience know. In fact, I thought later, Abady had used this one simple but startling statistic to engage his audience.

Abady’s presentation confirmed a long-held belief of mine: nothing speaks quite as loud as numbers. In teaching business owners and professional practitioners how to create content for blog posts, I stress the power of using statistics in blogs.

  • Statistics can serve as myth-busters, dispelling false impressions people may have regarding your industry.
  • Statistics grab visitors’ attention.
  • Statistics can be used demonstrate the extent of a problem (just as Jason Abady did in his talk), opening the door for your to show how you help solve that very type of problem.

Statistics relate to the theory of social proof, meaning that, as humans, we are more willing to do something if we see other people doing it. (That, I suspect, is what is in play with the Alzheimer’s Walk, which brings numbers of people together in an activity, rather than merely soliciting individual donations.)

There’s another side to this story, based on my own experience at Say It For You, training blog content writers and working with business owners and professional practitioners: Statistics alone, although powerful, are not enough to create positive results in a marketing blog. True, what blogging does best is “deliver” to blog sites customers who are already interested in the product or service provided by that practice, business, or organization. The blog content assures readers they are not alone in their need for solutions to their medical, financial, or personal challenges.

As John Pullinger observes in the Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, “Statistics provides a special kind of understanding that enables well-informed decisions. As citizens and consumers we are faced with an array of choices. Statistics can help us to choose well.” However, as blog marketers, it’s important for us to remember that the first choice that people make when presented with a statistic, is whether to take action at all.

Numbers give us quantifiable information, but when it comes to communicating how things can actually impact readers’ real lives, some form of humanizing or grounding the data is often effective, Barnard Marr explains in Forbes.

One way to boost the power of a statistic is to turn it into a story. The story then becomes a call to action for readers. In fact, one big, big part of providing business blogging assistance is helping business owners formulate stories. Online visitors to your blog want to feel you understand them and their needs, and the story enhances the potential value (to them) of your product or service. In his presentation, Jason Abady did exactly that, sharing the story of his own grandfather as an Alzheimer’s patient.

Unleash the combined power of startling statistics and inspiring stories in your blog!


Blogging Who You Are

Ahead of the launch of its inaugural flight from Indianapolis to Las Vegas a couple of weeks ago, Spirit Airlines announced two new year-round flights coming to market this November.  Since Spirit is new to our airport, John Kirby, vice president of network planning, delivered some introductory remarks at the press conference:“We are a leisure airline, so we look for opportunities to enhance our leisure position in the marketplace.”

In training Say It For You business blog content writers, I can use this one sentence to talk about niches. A niche is all about serving a particular group of clients with a particular need, applying a solution to that need.  After all, that’s what we do as blog content writers – serve niche markets.  As writers, we define a narrow target audience made up of people who are already looking for products, information, and services relating to a particular need they have.  For our part, rather than presenting ourselves (or the clients who’ve hired us to write for them), as knowing a little about a lot of things, we demonstrate that the owners are uniquely informed – and passionate – about just one or two.

“When approaching a new market niche, it’s imperative to speak their language.  In other words, you should understand that market’s ‘hot buttons’ and be prepared to communicate with the target group as an understanding member – not an outsider,” advises Kim T. Gordon, writing in Entrepreneur Magazine. That advice is particularly applicable to business blogging, and that principle is part of the “Power of One” concept on which Say It For You was founded. “The more focused a blog is, the more successful it will be in converting prospects to clients and customers.

Spirit’s “We are a leisure airline” is a great example of “blogging who you are.” It relates to what I call the “training benefit” of blogging.  When you create and maintain a blog, you’re verbalizing the positive aspects of your business in a way people can understand.  You’re putting your accomplishments down in words. You’re reviewing the benefits of your products and services, keeping those fresh in your mind.  You reveal some of the early struggles that helped you forge your business beliefs.  In other words, the very act of blogging provides constant training on how to talk effective about your own business or practice.




Odds-of Comparison Blogging for Business

Odds of opioid death higher than car crash,” a recent Indianapolis Star headline read. Since, at Say It For You, I’m always alert for ways to approach creating original content for business owners’ and professional practitioners’ blogs, that headline caught my attention.

One way to make business blog content impactful, I teach at Say It For You, is to put information in perspective by using statistical comparisons. “Even when news stories, ads, or public service announcements do a good job of providing risk statistics, you still need more information to make the numbers meaningful,” explain the authors of Know Your Chances.

Whether a business owner is composing his/her own blog posts or collaborating with a professional ghost blogger, it’s simply not enough to provide even very valuable information to online searchers who’ve landed on a company’s page The facts need to be “translated” into relational, emotional terms to put things into perspective for readers and therefore compel reaction – and action. Statistical comparisons help do just that.

Online searchers may know what they want or even what they need.  They may not know what to call that need. They almost certainly lack expert knowledge in your field. Think about it. It’s difficult for potential customers to know if:

  • your prices are fair
  • how experienced you are relative to your peers
  • how large or small your business is compared to others
  • whether “small” better for this particular service or product
  • whether and how your approach to your field different from most others

Online searchers may have heard about a particular product or service that you offer, but not know what the odds are that they will have need of that product or service!  “Odds-of” comparison blogging for business provides that very sort of guidance.

Opening your post with a startling statistic can be a way to grab visitors’ attention. Statistics can actually serve as myth-busters in themselves.  If there’s some false impression people seem to have relating to your industry, or to a product or service you provide, you can bring in statistics to show how things really are. Statistics can also serve to demonstrate the extent of a problem.  Once readers realize the problem, the door is open for you to show how you help solve that very type of problem for your customers!

“Odds-of” blogging for business can increase the odds of online readers deciding to DO business – with you!