:: By Travis Bliffen, Stellar SEO ::
As RankBrain continues to have a greater impact on rankings, you cannot overlook the importance of creating good content.
While many tell you to "create great content," they forget to tell you how. Below are some simple yet effective strategies to make the most of your content efforts.
1. Create a Content Series
Rather than just releasing a truckload of information once in a while, create a mini-series where content from different angles of the same concept is rolled out at a structured interval. This will make the content easier for readers to digest and it will allow you to engage with them consistently, increasing the likelihood of turning them into a lead or customer.
2. Infographics Still Work
At first, infographics were used as a quick way to generate links. Over the past couple of years, they have evolved from a quick link strategy to a legitimate educational tool. Consumers lover visual content so a well-designed infographic is more likely to be shared, making it possible to generate referral traffic and create a social buzz.
3. Repurpose Your Content
SlideShare averages over 70 million visitors a month. Most of you have content lying around from old blog posts, training sessions and the like. Take advantage of that content and create slide decks. SlideShare not only has a large audience that could see your content but it also has enough authority that your presentation has a good chance at ranking for related long-tail keywords. For the investment needed, this is a hard channel to beat.
4. Create a Multi-Level Tracking Plan
The hardest part of content marketing is determining how your company will measure success. Many people make the mistake of using a single metric to track the effectiveness of content. Today's buyer is more advanced than ever before and the mountains of content on nearly every topic make it easy to skip yours. If your plan is to create sales from every piece of content, you are going to be disappointed. Instead, you should think of were the buyer is in their cycle and match your content accordingly. Some content you create may have a goal of getting people to move from initial research to benefits comparison while content further down the funnel should be generating leads. Google Analytics should be your best friend in tracking content so get familiar with all of the options if you are not.
5. Create Shareable Content
Bet you have never heard that one before! Anyway, over time some content types have proven themselves over and over again. Here are a few of those:
- Create at "top x" list, people love lists.
- Create a post of influencer responses or quotes.
- Write an "ultimate" guide in your industry.
- Use image heavy posts with short, shareable text.
- Play the Devil's Advocate, people can't resist opposing views.
6. Understand Your Audience Better
Seek to understand each user's path to the purchase point by understanding what problems they are trying to solve. You should have a general idea of who your audience is and you should also know what problems your product or service can solve. The missing puzzle piece is finding out how potential customers are asking about those solutions. A simple yet highly effective way of doing this is to look at niche forums and Q&A sites like Quora. Compile a list of the most common questions in your field and use that as a basis for your content.
7. Connect with Consumers on Common Interests
Many businesses are afraid to tackle a controversial topic for fear or upsetting a part of their audience. One of the first things you learn about marketing is that it works best when targeted to a specific group of people within your audience, and your willingness to share your views on hot topics is a great way to really connect with your potential customers. Chick-Fil-A is one company that comes to mind for this strategy and it has worked great for them.
8. Promote, Promote, Promote!
Even if you follow the tips above, your content may still struggle. The difference between getting a ton of engagement and collecting dust is content promotion. At every step you should take note of where your content ideas come from and revisit those sites to promote the finished product. Forums and Q&A sites are one such place you should share your content. Paid promotion platforms like Outbrain can be a quick and cheap way to get that sharing started and social syndication can keep the moment going once a piece takes off. Regardless of your exact strategy, spend at least as long promoting your content as you did to create it, if not longer.
Over to you...
What is one change you have made to your content strategy that has had a major impact or performance? About the Author
Travis Bliffen is the founder of Stellar SEO, a Web design and marketing firm located in Franklin, TN. Travis and his team are equipped to handle any size SEO project and have helped numerous businesses to date build a rock solid online presence. When you are ready for more leads and sales, it is time to get #stellarized. Connect on Facebook or Twitter @theseoproz