Gone are the days when search engine optimization was enough to land your website onto Google’s good graces. Now you must to add content marketing to your arsenal of digital marketing tool if you want to gain search engines’ approval and ultimately win the heart of online users.
Most businesses are now using content marketing in some shape or form. However, many business owners still don’t fully understand how to use content to help them achieve specific goals; namely, increased traffic, leads and sales.
And for that, take a look at the basic guides for creating a content marketing strategy:
What are your marketing goals? Even if you’re going digital because everyone else is doing it and you’re afraid of being trampled by your competition, you still need some actual goals – increased sales, more website traffic or in-store traffic, you name it. Be specific about this, so you have something to measure against, to know if your efforts are paying off.
Thinking strategically keeps you focused on what’s most important, so you don’t get distracted by all the things you could be doing. With a good plan and intelligent implementation, even a newbie can sneak ahead of the competition. How’s that for motivation? And if for some reason you have no competition, you can always bask in the glow of a healthier bottom line.
Identify your target audience’s needs and pain points.
Your message must be consistent not only with your brand, but also must attract the type of customer you want to reach. Buyer personas are basically profiles of the type of customer you want to do business with based on research. When you have that profile hammered out, it’s much easier to develop content and messaging to that personal profile.
Continue to test and track.
How do you find out which pieces of content are working? You test different ideas and track the response. Some elements to test include the number of page views, time spent on page and the number of shares. By starting out your promotion on a small scale, you can quickly see which content is the most popular so that you can focus more of your resources on what’s working the best. Through tracking results, you also get an idea of what format, subject matter and type of content your audience likes.
Integrate with search and social options.
Content marketing works best with search and social. Since it generates valuable links, it will help support your SEO campaign. As far as social media goes, many businesses depend on their social following to push out their content. That’s why you want to focus on building a following on social media. If you’re starting from scratch, funnel some of your SEO traffic to your social media accounts. From there, you can push your content to your social following. The goal is for all three mediums to work in a synergistic manner.
Measure your results.
Make use of various online tools to measure the outcome of your combined SEO and content marketing efforts. Google Analytics can track changes in search volume over time. You will also know which pages and content attracts the most visitors, and the keywords they type to enter the website. The information gathered can help you fine-tune your content.