How to Create Content Your Readers Will Love While Playing Nice with Google (INFOGRAPHIC)
How to Create Content Your Readers Will Love While Playing Nice with Google
You’d only have look closely at what’s happening on the SEO front and you’d realize that changes come faster than you’d care to imagine. Google has been clamping down on websites and online publications with nefarious SEO practices by.
We need good content that your customers or readers gain value from while you can still play nice with Google. We created an Infographic on how to create content that Google loves, but we realized that we have an obligation to explain this further from content point of view.
Businesses still need content to make their marketing work online, there’s no mistaking that fact. It’s just that any kind of content won’t do. You’d need content that’s authoritative, impactful, valuable, and shareable. None of that would come with focus on keywords, keyword phrases, and link-building activities just for the sake of it.
Even guest posting – which was supposed to have gain some prominence as a viable link-building method is already getting the heat as Matt Cutts noted in his comments. Jennifer Slegg of Search Engine Watch wrote a detailed overview on what it means to guest post for SEO today.
Clearly, there’s a need to develop better content. There’s a need for imminent departure from cash-draining, ineffective, and baseless methods you might wan to deploy.
If you have to do digital marketing right, there are only so many correct and effective ways for you to do it. Here are some of them:
Show up regularly, and often, and with a large footprint
First, you’ll have to make sure that your content development schedule is busy. You have your own blog to write for. You’d then have to create content for publishing on other blogs. We aren’t even talking about parallel content such as slide decks, scripts for videos, reports, eBooks, social media updates, and many other forms of content.
The key is to publish regularly and then publish a lot more often. Yet, it’s not about quantity. For all this to happen, you’ll need a digital marketing plan. Here’s a possible outline for your plan:
♦Establish a frequency of publishing on your blog and keep at it even if you don’t (or cannot) do it. No excuses. It’ll be good to mention this once more: the focus is on both frequency and quality of your content.
♦Develop a plan to approach multiple avenues or channels for your content marketing. For instance, your plan could include your own blog posts, guest blog posts, and content curation by using tools like Scoop.it. You’ll also do well with a presence on communities such as Quora, LinkedIn Groups, and Open Forum hosted by American Express.
♦Maintain a rocking presence on social media. Pay attention to questions and go out of your way to answer them. Amy Gesenhues of Marketing Land alludes to a study by Lithium that reveals that 72% of consumers expect businesses and brands to respond on social media.
♦Don’t let success get to you: After a sustained effort on content marketing strategy, you’ll gain followers, likes, and plenty of love. Your blog attracts visitors (and customers), and you’ll be on your way to crack the digital marketing code. Many brands are already doing well online. But then, research from Simply Measured reveals – with thanks to Kevin J. Allen of Ragan.com that 54% of 100 Interbrand companies send out about one reply per day. Many brands are not responding at all. Don’t be that business.
Value + Information + passion + justified opinion = results
Value is expected. Garnish content with passion and attitude. It’s not enough to “write what matters”. Today, you’d have to do that with a bit of experience, opinion, attitude, and tons of passion.
Almost anyone can write. Writing with style while still keeping it simple and easy to understand is the skill that you’d need to master. Start with writing great headlines. Move on to write posts that hit the headers as they consume it. Create content that makes readers go “wow” or bring in the “aha” element. Meanwhile, throw in your own opinion or justify opinions backed by facts.
Give it all away: This is the “guard no secrets era”. The digital web demands that you share what you know. Give it for free or ask for a price but you need to give it all away. No matter what niche or business you are in, we are sure that you things that your customers don’t know.
With the right dose of passion and good writing, you can even turn the most boring of businesses/products/services/brands into fascinating success stories. You’d only have to read Pratik’s post on Copyblogger.com on how to turn boring into fascinating.
The world doesn’t need facts. There are plenty of those around for us. What we all need is an expert, justified opinion. So, if you were to look a bunch of landing pages and say “good” or “bad”, it isn’t fun. Instead, you could do what Oli Gardner and his team at Unbounce.com does. They pick a series of landing pages and give their critical views on each of those pages. They also provide alternative approaches (including copy) to make these landing pages work better. Can you do something similar?
Multiple Birds, One Bullet
Could you possibly hit three birds with one magic bullet? You can, with the right kind of content development strategy.
If you write engaging, impactful, and valuable posts but link out to other thought leaders, influencers, and experts (for making a few points or to help bring out your own thoughts better), you are basically doing more with a blog post than what’s possible.
For instance, you could write:
“SEO is changing rapidly. Google’s insistence on quality now causes rush-hour traffic to bring out the best possible content on the web”
That’s just you writing something there.
Or you could say,
“The SEO autobahn is now getting more crowded then ever. While you can choose whether or not to develop great content, you can’t drift once you make a commitment. Choosing to develop content that works is much a like a recipe, and there are ingredients that go into it, much like Zach Bulyho of KissMetrics points out”
Now, that’s writing while mentioning other experts or thought leaders.
When you write this way, you achieve the following things with your writing:
♦You add tons of credibility to your writing. It’s basically easier for readers for consume information that a lot of people agree to.
♦The fact that you mention other people in your blog posts makes it possible for you to get noticed (and they might just reciprocate).
♦Outgoing links to these bloggers and influences end up as permalinks on blog posts that you are linking to. They show up as comments or link backs and that also gets you traffic and exposure.
♦You get to make friends, chat, talk, or share a few laughs with each of these influencers – all thanks to your post. You’ll never know what happens next after you build these relationships.
Do guest blogging right
So, you’d be forgiven to think that guest posting for SEO might very well reach a point of extinction. It won’t. Guest posting has always been a great way to develop credibility, pull in some traffic, and of course, create precious backlinks. Taking the “article marketing” approach to guest posting for SEO, however, would get you exactly what Matt Cutts predicts.
The spam emails, the worthless junk that parades around as possible guest posts, and the seemingly vulnerable small businesses owners can all make guest blogging worthy of extinction.
Here’s a short guide to make guest posting work for you:
♦Graft custom emails for every guest posting opportunity: Just like sending cookie-cutter proposals to every client won’t work, you can’t just send out the same email to every host blogger or online publication. Take time to read through posts already published, find out who’s in charge (some blogs are run by individuals and some have teams), and send out a custom application for guest blogging.
♦Know them before reaching out: go out there and look for host bloggers. You can find them on social media or as they go about blogging.
♦Blog commenting to publishing approach: start posting relevant and meaningful comments on host blogs first. It’s the easiest and the best way to start building relationships. You can then approach hosts to write guest posts.
♦Develop posts are same quality as those published on your own blog: work hard to create blog posts that are even better than many of your own blog posts(for industry authority blogs ). Send out your best blog posts ever.
Work for reverse guest blogging
When you do guest blogging, you’d typically develop blog posts that are published on host blogs (usually popular blogs).
Reverse blogging, however, allows you to pull in thought leaders, brands, and influencers to write on your blog. This is different from other businesses or brands “requesting” you to publish on your blog. Instead, you’d reach out to others and invite them over to write for your blog.
Amanda DiSilvestro of Search Engine People, wrote on Reverse Blogging and explains how it leads to stronger partnerships and sustainable content flow. Clearly, reverse blogging is just as hard as good quality guest blogging.
Before you do that, there are certain things you’d have to achieve:
♦Find them before you need them: Getting your blog publish-worthy would take time. Making other experts write for your blog also takes time. That’s why it’s prudent to invest time and effort to get to know experts better, even before you ask them or send them an invite to post on your blog. Connect with influencers on social media or through their respective blogs, and work on building relationships. Build relationships enough so as to know them better. Only if they trust you and like you would they take the trouble to write for you.
♦Make your blog worthy enough for them to publish: You’d need to have a reasonably popular blog for making it worthwhile for others to take the effort to create blog posts for publishing on your blog.
♦Make it easy for them by giving out suggested topics or blog post titles. Also create user accounts for them after they agree to publish on your blog.
Work with what works now, and tomorrow
Change is permanent. On the web, change is also quick. What you thought would work for SEO is already changing. There’s more emphasis on creating quality content, building relationships, setting up pages in alignment with web users’ expectations, extending SEO work to mobile pages, and much more.
So, if Keywords aren’t as important today as they once were, ditch those keywords. Work on developing content like the major journals and newspapers do. Stop creating content for “no reason”. Instead, make every piece of content work for you:
♦You could develop blog posts built to get you newsletter conversions.
♦Create blog posts to explain your products and services better.
♦Write to become a thought leader, subject expert or influencer.
♦Publish for purpose: what do you want your content to achieve? Brand image? Newsletter opt-in? Click through to a direct sales page? Do you want them to sign up for free offers or trials? Watch a video on YouTube or Vimeo? Tommy Walker of Unbounce.com writes about the need to stay focused on your goals while you develop content. Here’s how he condenses goal sets down:
“There are basically only four things a marketer needs from any piece of content:
•To be shared
•To get comments
•To generate leads
•To make sales
Problem is, most of us (myself included sometimes) aren’t creating individual pieces of content with one of these goals in mind. We either forget about the goal entirely, or worse, we expect a single piece of content to everything.”
How are you working to make your content strategy work for you? How do you develop the kind of content that Google loves while making sure that you are writing for your customers or readers and not the spiders?
How do you brandish that magic wand? Tell us all about it.
Digital Marketing Strategist in IBOXSEO. Who have worked with firms in the UK, Ireland, and HK on growing their online presence via lean strategy. Hugely passionate about the evolving nature of SEO, He is always interested in the latest shifts and patterns, particularly related to content marketing.