With as many as 500 million blogs on the World Wide Web, one can say out loud that content marketing has been growing exponentially. However, with almost every brand leveraging it effectively, content marketing has also become saturated. So does that mean that you shouldn’t opt for it? If not, you will be missing out on many leads and not make the most of the strategies out there required to drive valuable conversions.
This content marketing tips cheat sheet will help rev up your content strategy, whether you are just getting started or already are a seasoned pro.
1. Make a content plan
Do you want to direct traffic to your website? Want more readers on your page? Better ranking on SERP?
It is hard to achieve if you do not know exactly what you are trying to achieve.
It is just like hopping in a car and driving without knowing the destination. Indeed, the drive will be beautiful but might wind you up in a spooky town with one gas station and a hotel that gives you bed bugs. Pick a goal that you want to achieve, and then create a content marketing plan to get there. That way, you will have something to guide every decision and a way to measure your growth. A content marketing plan will clearly define the primary elements of your effort. It will clearly define what you will be talking to, what you will say and how to say it, and content promotion strategies.
2. Hail the Target Audience
Be it any social media campaign, search engine campaign, or content marketing campaign, every type of marketing campaign directs towards a specific target audience. Build content around a takeaway for the audience. Identify your target audience and create a buyer persona as it will provide a clear focus of whom your business will serve and why those consumers need your goods or services. If you have to force your audience to see the value in the content or hard sell it, it will not work.
3. Be the Ultimate Grammar Savvy
Posting articles—filled with spelling and grammar errors—will make the writer look silly to his/her readers/potential customers and even decrease the traffic flow. Your content must deliver authoritative results to get a decent ranking on Google’s SERP (Search Engine Result Page). And nothing makes it seem less appealing than bad grammar and spelling errors.
Here are a few more article writing tips:
- You can try different conditions, influences, and times of day for writing.
- If you are running against time, try hiring freelancers who help produce content.
- Writing about trending topics is crucial, but do not forget to include content that can increase website traffic.
4. Try to educate with your content instead of selling it
Let’s accept it: content is a selling machine, no matter how hard you deny it. So if your purpose is to sell, do not do it directly. Instead, make your target audience aware of the product/service you are offering and how it benefits and improves lives. Once you have educated your prospects, that’s when you start suggesting your service/product.
5. Do not abandon Brand Identity
One of the key content marketing strategies is to make content that combines interesting, timely topics with a point of view and approach, without compromising the brand identity. Your content creation strategy should be such that a blog resonates with the target audience while complementing the brand personality.
6. Offer a strong Call to Action
Calling CTA (Call to Action) a primary component of a blog would be an understatement. On the contrary, it is a primary principle of conversion optimization. The trick to creating an efficient CTA for customers is what’s in it for them. You can also AB test your CTA before sending the ultimate campaign.
7. Offer Free value through your content
Nothing attracts more consumer attention than the word – FREE. While most marketers and branding associates ask for money in return, you can offer free tools quality content to build your brand. The best example is Neil Patel, who provides an entire keyword tool for free – Uber Suggests. You can also write some blogs on content strategy and share some insights about the industry,
8. Longer content is the key
Do not just write a short form to get the job done; work on long-form content of 1,000+ words to improve your search rank, traffic, and value to the reader. As per a study shared by Quicksprout, after A/B testing the landing pages, the website/content with longer ones performed better and had more qualified leads.
9. Be mobile-friendly
43.6% of all website traffic worldwide was generated through mobile, up from 35.1% in the previous year, as per Statista. That’s why marketers need to optimize their websites, ads, and images for mobile success. Here are three ways you can do that:
- Optimize Text: You must understand how people read content on a mobile device. You can try various patterns, such as Golden Triangle and F-shaped design, to make your content look more mobile-friendly.
- Optimize Image: Graphics, memes, and screenshots add a visual punch to your content that keeps users interested.
- Optimize Design: The design of your website should be responsive, which means that as the screen changes, the content should fit within them.
10. Be consistent with your content update
In this rapidly changing technology, it takes barely a year or two for content to become outdated. Rather than going through the hassle of writing an entirely new post, a better idea would be to update the old content because you will not lose any SEO juice on the original URL. Updating well-performing content involves:
- Read the blog and research to see what has changed on the topic. Once that is done, rewrite those parts
- Citing new, authoritative sources
- Check if all the links are working
- Replacing all the outdated images
- Refreshing the intro and conclusion
If you are confused about which blog to update, you can conduct a thorough content audit annually.
11. Engaged with your Target Audience as much as Possible
Talk and write as if you are talking to a friend. The more you will interact with them, the stronger the relationship becomes, and more likely they will come back to your page to read some other posts. For example, consider writing the sentence in the second person (“you” and “your”). While writing your Call to Action, you can encourage them to deliver there in the comments, through an email, or on the brand’s Facebook page.
For sure, your next question will be: How frequently should I try to interact with the customers? Once a week? Once a year? Try to revert as soon as the reader comments. Speak on their level. You are not a textbook.
12. 80/20 Rule is the key
For all those who do not know, I am here talking about Pareto’s principle, stating 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. When it comes to content marketing, this rule means that you should figure out which 20% of the content you are creating generates 80% of your overall results. You can apply this rule while testing the blog format, medium, and even topics. Once you know what that 20% is, put all your focus on it. Then 80% of your work should be promoting that 10x content.
13. Collaborate with the influencers
If ever a book is made that states about the content marketing strategy 2021, then this strategy will secure a place in the top 10. You can pay an influencer to promote your work through his/her website/social media account. But before committing, make sure you research about the influencer and analyze their audience and trustworthiness. Mentioned below are some of the types of influencers that you could consider for your brand:
- Celebrity Influencers
- Authority Influencers
- Social Media Sensations
(If you alien to this concept, then click here to access influencers marketing guide)
14. Learn to understand content analytics
Start by paying close attention to the content analytics as it gives you an idea about the most popular topics responsible for driving traffic to your website. You can A/B test a copy or even track the same on analytics. More often than not, you will find a pattern or winning content that can help to drive more traffic to your sales funnel.
15. Make sure the content is available for syndication
For all those who do not know, content syndication is of four types:
- Publish syndicated content from other relevant publications/companies/websites on your blog.
- Syndicate your blog content to other relevant websites/companies/publications.
- Write original content for a suitable site in your space that syndicates its content to partners.
- Reach a wider audience by republishing your blog content on Medium and LinkedIn.
By syndicating your content, you can reach a new audience and drive referral traffic back to your site.
16. Gain authority through guest posting
Guest Blogging, a popular industry trend that allows you to add a link back to your site within your byline or bio, is an impressive way to build brand authority. You get to tap into the host blog’s whole new network and promote your brand. It is a super easy and cheap way to get lots of prequalified eyes to your website.
17. Offer some exclusive content to your email list
Email marketing, a powerful content marketing channel, should be embraced because the people on your list are already your fans. If you’re not offering them any unique content, you are missing out on a good content marketing platform. To take your email marketing to a new level, you can even try segmenting your mail.
18. Know what kind of content is best for each social media platform
A preferred form of content varies for each social media channel. For example, Youtube is the best place for video content marketing, whereas Pinterest and Instagram are ideal visual content platforms.
19. A/B Test
You should always test your campaign before launching it because numbers never lie. That’s why you should always A/B test content, a method of comparing two variations of an ad, piece of content, or other material so you can see which version performs better. Commonly known as Split testing, it involves changing small elements to refine your result. During the testing, only a meager part of your audience sees each test. With this, you can create the most creative content before sending it to a larger audience.
20. Keywords are the key to success
Every year, Google receives over 1.2 trillion searches. For sure, now you know why content marketers are spending cash, effort, and energy in targeting them and bringing customers to their website via searches. To target them, one thing that you need to focus on is the keyword. Researching for the keywords–before writing an article–is crucial as it will perform better on the SERP. Choosing the right keywords (or I should say a combination of keywords) can attract the right audience, which could propel your content marketing strategy into the largest driver of new customers for your business. Also, do not ignore the long-tail keyword, because by doing so, you would be overlooking the 70% traffic.
Phew, it was a long list! I can completely understand that online content marketing can be overwhelming; there are many channels through which you can market your content.
But relax; content marketing shouldn’t be this scary. Bookmark these tips, put them into practice, and get more bang for your buck.
If you want to learn more about content marketing and other strategies, apply for the PG Program in Strategic Digital Marketing. Click here to know more about the program.0