Using Content Marketing to Improve SEO
Quality content marketing should be at the center of every online marketing strategy. It answers users questions and provides them with the information they are looking for. By doing this well, you will create a dedicated following who sees you as authoritative and unique on your topic, those followers will hopefully become “buying” customers, and those followers will also become fans who share your content and bring more followers. Google continues to become smarter in a more human way and it is increasingly more focused on positive user experiences, it will see your site as valuable and rank it higher.
Speak to your perfect customer in his/her language, answer her questions, provide relevant value to her the first time and consistently… seduce her, provide what she is looking for and then nurture your relationship with her. Google’s artificial intelligence is smart enough to seek you out when your perfect customer comes to them asking for recommendations if you’ve proven you have what they are looking for laid out in the best possible way for the web crawlers to read (URLs, snippets, keywords and relevant quality content on a high quality website).
Quality content marketing strategies should take into account some current trends: mobile-first indexing (verify your site is mobile device friendly), voice search (HOW do people phrase their queries when using Siri or Alexa. Tip: create a FAQ page to answer the questions your potential customers are asking), page speed, content relevance and user intent (content relevant URLs and long-form content), blockchain and artificial intelligence. It’s also important to keep in mind the popularity of video and the necessity of security and user data protection.
Content Marketing Tips:
Only publish your high quality content.
One great post or page is better than 5 poor or mediocre ones. Accept the time and effort necessary to do an exceptional job with content or you won’t stand out from the vast crowd seeking the attention of your target audience.
Measure the data available to you in regards to your content.
What do you want to accomplish with your content and how will you measure it? A million “likes” feels great, but how does it translate to your business goals? Does it? Evaluate your results to save time and money by focusing on what does move you closer to your business goals.
Repurpose your content:
Examine the content that is performing well and apply that content to other formats. Some examples are: ebook or downloadable guide, webinar, or an email blast. Have an instagram post that is getting a ton of response? Create a blog post, product or event to expand on it.
Don’t be afraid to be bold:
Even when a topic is controversial, speaking up about it will show your authentic self. Perhaps not everyone will like it, but those who resonate with you will become more loyal and committed.
Use keywords authentically:
It’s ok to research keyword phrase potentials and build content around them, as long as they fully resonate with what you have to offer.
Back up your content with data:
Supporting your content with data-driven facts is more convincing, and adds authority and trust. Seek out and use proper etiquette in citing your sources.
Stay true to your brand voice:
This is easier for small/one-man businesses than large corporations. If you’re a “little fish” use this to your advantage and be authentic with your voice.
Become a better writer:
Writing content is a craft that requires practice–a lot of it. Read more and read varied content and genres, definitely include books written about or within your industry, but branch out and keep learning. Take a class–being a better writer will increase your value in just about any field. Pay attention to consistent style, proofread and correct typos and grammar mistakes, and revisit older content from time to time to make sure it is current and still fits in with your more recent content style.
Have useful content for YOUR audience:
Answer a question or solve a problem. Get into the head of your user and spend some time there to make sure you know what their problem is and then go about solving it with your content. You may have to produce slightly tweaked content for sub-target audience members within a broader target group to be most effective. Then use the appropriate social channel to share the content to your sub-targets.
Teach first, sell second:
Provide value to your user/reader, for free, and then give them a call to action at the end of your content. Your content should convince the user that you are an expert and can solve their problem(s) before they are asked to make a decision to buy.
Be an expert:
You need to know what you’re talking about to earn this title. Do your research and become an expert before you create content. Or choose a different topic you actually know about. Or hire an expert to create your content.
Use SEO on the back end to boost your content:
Things like title tags, meta descriptions, and URL relevancy, will all help Google to understand what your content is about and when to recommend you in a search query.
Some common mistakes to avoid:
Using the wrong words:
Do your keyword research! Using the right words in a relevant way will get your great content noticed by Google and therefore presented to your target user.
Abandoning page URLs that have traffic:
This is just throwing away valuable “link-juice”! It’s also important to be mindful and careful about proper redirects when moving site content.
Not measuring your site data:
Testing and tracking promotions and campaigns allows you to see what’s working and what isn’t so you can focus your energy on the better performing efforts. It’s also valuable to track the campaigns and promotions of competitors as part of your marketing strategy.
Your content isn’t evergreen:
Create (at least some) content that will provide value to your reader immediately and that won’t expire or become outdated. This is an excellent source of content to repurpose again and again without having to take the time to update and revise.