It’s impossible for content to succeed without SEO, and vice versa. Here’s how you can unite your SEO and content strategy to achieve greater success.
As any parent of toddlers will tell you, there are few things in life more annoying than talking when you know no one’s listening. As any content marketing professional will tell you, that’s exactly what happens when you create content but ignore SEO.
Often search engine optimisation (SEO) and content marketing are considered as two separate components of a marketing strategy. You create the content, slap some SEO on it and hope that it shows up in search, right?
In fact, there are few aspects of marketing strategy that are as closely linked as SEO and content, which is why SEO is crucial to the success of your content marketing.
SEO puts the customer first
To begin with, SEO does what every marketing strategy should: it puts the customer front and centre.
Remember the golden rule of content marketing: it should always identify a need or problem of the consumer and explain why your product or service is the best way to resolve it.
Content that answers a specific question or addresses a need directly will always rank high in search. Turns out the golden rule of marketing – putting the customer first – is also the golden rule of content and SEO.
Content makes technical SEO work harder
There’s a lot of tech sitting behind SEO strategies and this matters greatly where content is concerned.
A thorough site map, precise slugs (that’s the part of the URL that comes after .com.au), and keyword-rich tags will elevate your website in search.
What content does is build on the power of your technical SEO strategy. Intersecting content and technical SEO will maximise your overall search strategy.
Social media impacts SEO
Think of SEO and social media as two parts of one conversation. SEO says I want to find something, and your socials reply, here it is.
To get the best results, focus on creating high quality, original content and you’ll succeed in both social media and SEO.
A key part of SEO is using keywords in your content so they rank higher in the search engine results pages (SERPs). Just remember that it’s a delicate balance.
We’ve all read content that is keyword heavy, where one word or phrase is used ten times in the opening paragraph. The takeaway is that the article was probably created to rank highly in search, rather than answer any question the reader might have.
Rather than repeating the same words constantly, a better strategy is to research the best performing websites and competitive keywords that are specific to your business or industry and focus on including these strategically in your content, such as in headlines.
SEO supports longevity of content
Incorporating SEO into your content won’t deliver amazing results immediately, but it will deliver results that last.
Content with strong SEO will show up in search years after publication.
We’ve seen clients who continue to get leads and referrals from evergreen articles they published years ago, found via search.
Need help boosting your SEO and content marketing?
Assemblo is a full-service marketing agency based in Melbourne, with expertise in SEO and content marketing. We understand how SEO and content intersects to create a powerful strategy that generates leads and converts them into customers.
To find out how we can help your business with SEO and content, give us a call on (03) 9079 2555 or send us a note via the contact form below.
Use this checklist to ensure your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is performing effectively as part of your marketing strategy.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is critical to businesses of all sizes, with an estimated 5.8 billion searches made by users on Google every day.
Searching online has become second nature for many, meaning businesses need to ensure that SEO is a key part of their marketing strategy.
Since SEO is such an important aspect in the modern marketing landscape, we decided to put together a checklist to successfully manage your website rankings in search engine results.
One-off optimisation tasks
These tasks are focused on getting the right tools and pieces in place to begin your search optimisation journey. These tasks will only need to be performed once.
- Install Google Analytics on your website. This will allow you to gain insights into the sort of people who visit your website, monitor their on-site behaviour and track conversions. Here’s a guide by Google on how to set up your analytics account.
- Add your website to Google Search Console. This will allow you to monitor the ‘health’ of your website. The Google Search Console (previously known as Google Webmaster Tools) tells you if your site pages are generating search errors, such as a 404 error or an uncrawlable page. It shows basic data including the keywords your website appears for and it allows you to submit an XML sitemap (see below). If you need to know how to set up a Google Search Console account, you can read this article.
- Use a tool like Google Search Console, Moz Tools, or Screaming Frog to check your website for any crawl errors. These can be old pages you’ve retired that search engines are seeing as errors (use 301 redirects to point these dead links elsewhere) and can also help you identify broken links and bad code throughout your site.
- Create and submit an XML sitemap to Google. An XML sitemap is a file that lists all of your website’s pages in hierarchical order. When you submit it to Google and other search engines, it allows them to understand the layout and organisation of your site, making it easier to crawl and rank. Here’s a guide on how to submit your XML sitemap to Google.
- Set up tracking codes to all important events on your website that you would like to monitor and report on, such as submitted forms, newsletter sign-ups or watched videos. You can use Google Analytics event tracking for simple behaviour, or more advanced tools like Mixpanel for more detailed tracking.
- Create a Google Places listing for your business so that your business appears as a knowledge graph for branded search results. Set one up here.
- Test your website’s loading speed using Google’s Page Speed Insights tool, as the loading time of your website impacts user experience and website ranking. This is where you can identify opportunities to improve the speed of your site where possible.
- Optimise your website so that it is mobile friendly. Since April 2015, Google has been providing ranking preference to websites that are mobile responsive with its ‘Mobilegeddon’ update. Be sure to do a Google search on your phone to see if your website receives a ‘mobile friendly’ tag in search results.
- Link your social media accounts to your website using these must-have meta tags.
- Set up Open Graph to ensure posts shared over social media are formatted correctly.
- Conduct keyword research and create a keyword list for your website using tools such as Google Keyword Planner or Ubersuggest. Keyword research tools provide data on search terms such as volume of search each month for the term and the competition of the term (the quality and quantity of sites you’re competing with for ranking). Tools may also provide suggestions for other related keywords to target. Generally speaking, it’s more effective to aim to target a wide range of less competitive terms as you’ll see a faster return on your time investment here. The keyword list you create should then be used to help guide your on-page optimisation.
- Allocate keyword categories (containing a broad set of terms based on your research) to each page on your website. This will allow you to better target keywords on each page and highlight which pages should be optimised for particular search queries.
- Ensure your website is using tags correctly throughout. A common misused tag in sites is the header tag (<h1>, <h2>, etc). As a rule, there should only be one H1 tag per page as this dictates the header of your page. Any subsequent header tags should be used to dictate hierarchy. For example, do not just jump to an H3 tag from an H1 tag, make sure you follow the numerical order and place an H2 tag before any H3 tags. This is important as Google uses header tags as one of its many ranking factors for both keywords and code quality.
- Make sure your primary keywords are used in your header tags (primarily H1 tags as Google places more weight on H1 titles).
- Keep your meta titles and meta descriptions within the recommended character counts. Meta titles should be under 55 characters and meta descriptions under 160 characters. This will prevent your meta from being truncated in Google search results. Additionally, ensure your meta is compelling with ‘calls to action’ to encourage click-throughs to your website from the search engine results page.
- All images on your site should include descriptive ALT tags with relevant keywords where appropriate. Search engines use ALT tags to interpret what an image is on a web page and use it as a ranking factor, associating the ALT tag with the content on the page. Ensure you don’t just stuff ALT tags with irrelevant messages, these are also used by screen readers that may be used by your visually impaired users.
- The URL path of your pages has also been identified by Google as an important ranking factor. Make sure your pages have human-readable URLs that include keywords (ideally matching your title and H1 tag). Remember that if you change any URLs, you will need to conduct a 301 redirect from the old path to the new, to prevent any 404 errors on your website.
- To increase conversions and make it easier for customers to contact you, add relevant enquiry forms on pages where it makes sense to do so. Ensure the forms don’t have too many fields and they have tracking code attached so you can monitor conversions within your analytics. Try to pair the message on the form with the page, as this will increase the relevance of the form and encourage users to enter their details.
- Add social media sharing buttons to your articles. This provides users with the opportunity to promote your content through their social media.
- Add a ‘related articles’ section to your blog. This will help drive visitors through your website, allowing them to engage with more of your content, encouraging them through the buying decision process and ultimately converting.
- Avoid misleading, confusing or vague navigation models or functionality in your site. Things like ‘mystery meat’ buttons (that require roll-overs to see what they do) or non-standard menus can confuse or frustrate your users.
- Make sure you are acquiring localised search results and rankings, as national search results will become less reliable.
- Consider trimming or enhancing low-quality website pages to improve the overall quality of your site. For example, you can test and meta no-index underperforming pages.
On-going SEO tasks
These are the SEO tasks that never end and are important to the growth of your website’s long-term rankings and site maintenance.
- Invest in creating regular, high-quality content for your site. This is one of the single most effective things you can do. For most sites this will be through a blog or news section. Regular article creation shows Google that your website is fresh and that it is constantly being maintained. Creating high-quality content will help engage your customers, give users a reason to link back to your website and help you cut through the noise in search engine results. At Assemblo, for example, we use experienced journalists and niche writers to create newsworthy content for our clients, ensuring success in search and social media, while providing great content for monthly email newsletters and resources for businesses to share with their customers and prospects.
- Conduct Google searches for long-tail keywords with good search opportunity. This might include questions customers may have asked (or you think they could ask) or a specific way they may search for a product or service. Look for opportunities where the quality of the top-ranking results is low, and then create content that answers those questions. Tools like Quora are great to see the kinds of questions people might be asking about your industry (and also provide an opportunity to share a link back to your site with the answer once you’ve written the article).
- Develop a content schedule to ensure your content is regular and supports all aspects of your business. Aim to create content that targets different stages of the customer buying process: awareness, interest, evaluation of alternatives, purchase and post purchase. Look for ways to engage your customers, educate them and give back. Give relevant news and opinions, share your story and personality. Give people a reason to talk about your brand.
- For your articles, create meta titles and descriptions that are compelling and encourage click-throughs. Be sure to keep meta titles under 55 characters and meta descriptions under 160 characters.
- As well as linking to your social media accounts on your site, you should also set up an email marketing tool and offer users the ability to join your email mailing list.
- Try to understand searcher intent and structure your copy to respond to what people are looking for online. You should try to tailor your content to provide the best value to your readers, considering your copy, images and other elements.
- Look at ways to repurpose your content. If you write an article or blog post, then consider turning it into slides or creating a video or podcast with it.
- Conduct and publish unique research that is valuable to readers.
- Refine copy on your web pages to better reflect and utilise keywords. The quality of your content is the most important factor here, so ensure your pages are well written and easy to read (aim for a high Flesch Reading Ease score with a free tool like this). People are more likely to search with simple language, and it will also help people read your content, meaning they’re more likely to do so.
- Always experiment. Try different text, images, positioning of elements and order of your messages. Set benchmarks before making changes, then monitor and report each change to learn what works best.
- Use monitoring tools like Google Analytics and Heatmapping tools to see what users are doing on your site, how they move through it, what they are clicking on and what they pay the most attention to.
- Add schema markup to your website to help search engines find more informative results for users. Schema is a type of microdata or code that improves your site’s rich snippets, which helps your website to appear higher up in search rankings.
- Work on attracting featured snippets, which are selected search results that feature at the top of Google’s results. Your best chance at grabbing the featured snippet spot is to create a concise, informative and simple summary on the topic.
- Foster engagement and encourage comments on your site with a tool like Disqus. A rich discussion thread is definitely a quality indicator for search engines, but make sure the comments are legitimate and relevant – it’s vital to moderate spam. Use Google Search Console to find keyword opportunities. You can find opportunities by analysing your queries, click-through rates, impressions, and position.
On-site and off-site link building
- Conduct link building activities to acquire quality backlinks to your website and its content. Backlinks are seen as an extremely important ranking factor by Google, so it’s important to acquire as many relevant and high-quality back links to your website as possible. It’s VERY important to make sure the links you acquire are both credible and relevant otherwise your site will be penalised thanks to Google’s Penguin algorithm. Avoid nasty link farms and unrelated sites, instead aiming for links from industry bodies, government sites, credible blogs and news sources.
- Look for opportunities to contribute to forums and blogs. Where possible, you can share useful content to your site, but you have to contribute – don’t be irrelevant or sell too aggressively. There’s some great reading here from Rand Fishkin of Moz about how to best leverage this platform.
- Make sure your page doesn’t contain any dead ends. Where appropriate, insert cross-links to other pages and pieces of content on your own website to improve the user experience and drive visitors deeper into your site. Consider your site as a funnel and look for opportunities to drive people towards a sale. If you have a blog, ensure you include links to related articles.
- When writing content, make sure you link to other websites you’re talking about. Google not only sees this as a positive ranking signal, it may also result in you getting a backlink from the site you linked to.
- Conduct a competitor backlink analysis. Use a tool such as Linkio or the Open Site Explorer by Moz to analyse the backlink profile of your competitors to see if there are any opportunities for you to get additional backlinks to your site. This tool can also be used on your site to monitor your own backlinks.
- Further amplify your content to broader audiences. As well as your social media channels, places like LinkedIn and Medium are great places to share your content and push out your message further and reach new audiences.
- Where possible, look for opportunities to write guest content on third-party blogs, newsletters and publications. Industry bodies, blogs and even community groups are often looking for high-quality content and may even be willing to offer a link back to your site.
Things to avoid
There are some SEO/optimisation activities that used to be important but now are either ignored by Google or, even worse, may affect your rankings negatively. As a rule of thumb, if what you’re doing isn’t benefitting the user, it’s probably not a good idea.
Here are some things to avoid:
- Avoid keyword stuffing. You shouldn’t overuse keywords in your content. Google can see through this tactic and the lower overall quality of your writing will discourage users from reading your content.
- Focus on converting over keywords. Building on from the previous point, ensure your title tags are compelling and interesting and not just stuffed full of the keywords you want to rank on. You want to actually encourage people to click on and read your article more than just ranking in the top position.
- Since the Hummingbird update, Google punishes sites with multiple pages that only have a slightly different keyword topic. Each product or service you offer should have just a single page optimised to include the different keywords you’re aiming to rank on. A better way to broaden your search appeal is by creating a mix of unique articles interchanging the keywords you want to target and linking back to your product/service page from these.
- Try to avoid low quality links in your content. While it’s good to help users move through your site with relevant cross-links throughout your content, avoid over doing it. Google is good at picking up on bad, spammy links in your content.
- Avoid low-quality directories, paid links, link networks, etc. While this used to be a key tactic for SEO, Google has been introducing updates to punish sites hard for bad quality backlinks. As a rule of thumb, if the site wouldn’t provide any value or interest to a user, it’s probably one to stay well away from.
Chat to the SEO experts at Assemblo
Ongoing site maintenance and optimisation should be an integral part of any marketing strategy. As more people begin their buying process online through search engines and social media, ensuring the visibility of your brand online is a huge priority. SEO is complex, it takes time, strategy and experimentation to get things right.
It’s also important to research and carry out SEO activities that matter to your business and your industry. There are so many different SEO tactics and activities out there, however some of these may not apply to your specific industry.
As an ever-changing art, best-practice changes frequently, so be sure to partner with a specialist that works in this space and understands how to adapt your strategy to best meet these changes.
As a full-service marketing agency based in Melbourne, Assemblo offers extensive SEO and digital marketing expertise that can help your website perform at its best.
To learn more about our SEO and digital marketing services, give us a call on (03) 9079 2555 or drop us a note via the contact form below.
Getting your website to rank on the first page of Google’s search results is a big deal, so it’s critical to improve your search engine optimisation (SEO) at every turn.
According to imFORZA, 93% of online experiences start with a search engine, reflecting just how important SEO is to the success of your online presence.
Here are four ways to optimise your SEO and improve your website’s search ranking:
1. Republish old content
Republishing your old website content will provide your readers with the most up-to-date information and make your website stand out in search engines, which prioritise currency of content.
There are a few ways you can refresh your content, including creating a follow-up post to an existing article.
Simply keep the main points from your original piece and make some changes to key words and the article structure. For example, you might want to turn a regular article into a listicle.
Updating older posts is another way to refresh your content if your original article or blog post is no longer relevant — just revise the necessary points and remember to manually update the publish date in your content management system (CMS).
If you want to totally overhaul an old piece of content, you can always create a new post and redirect the old URL to a new one.
2. Optimise your website with structured markup
With the growth of voice search and Google displaying ‘rich snippets’ above other search results (a key pull-out that answers a specifically searched question which links back to the page), using structured markup is an important aspect in your website optimisation.
Structured data (also known as schema markup) are standardised ways of defining your content so search engines can better understand it. It’s essentially metadata – data about the content on your site, hidden from users in your source code. There are very specific hierarchies you can use that identify things specific to areas such as events, organisations and even recipes.
3. Add alt text to images
Images are a key ingredient to any good website, but you need to assign alt text to them so that search engines can identify them.
Google and other search engines can’t actually see the images on your website, so adding descriptive alt text to images helps improve your site usability and visibility, which will ultimately help your search ranking.
But be careful not to force in your SEO keywords, which is also known as ‘keyword stuffing’.
Try and be as semantic and descriptive as possible. Alt text also means that the picture can be explained to people who are visually impaired, making your website more accessible.
4. Create SEO-friendly headlines
Search engines place a lot of emphasis on headlines, whether it’s for an article or a web page nested in your site.
You can enhance the SEO performance of your headlines by checking Google’s related search terms, tracking trends on Google and Twitter, and running a marketing workshop to identify key topics.
When it comes to Google’s related search terms, don’t forget to analyse the related search results, which are found at the bottom of the page.
Check out Google Trends to find out which popular topics and search queries are connected to your headline or sign in to Twitter and see what is trending next to your Twitter feed.
You can also run a workshop to uncover key terms and phrases for your headlines. Think about frequently asked questions from your clients and how you can use those questions and the answers in your headlines.
If you’d like to take things to the next level, you could use paid tools such as SEMRush’s Topic Research Tool to help identify what users are looking for.
Get trusted SEO advice
As a full-service marketing agency based in Melbourne, Assemblo can create powerful SEO strategies to greatly improve your search engine rankings and attract more website visitors.
To find out how we can help, give us a call on (03) 9079 2555 or drop us a note via the contact form below.
Welcome to the final part of our content marketing series about articles and the incredible value they provide to a business when incorporated in its marketing strategy.
In case you’ve come to the series late, here’s a quick overview of what we’ve already covered:
- Our introductory article discussed how blogs can help steer customers down the purchase funnel
- We then talked about how blog posts can accurately and effectively target keywords and categories to help boost your search engine rankings
- And last month’s entry explained how articles, combined with social media, can make a powerful combination to help drive web traffic and increase conversions.
In this final part, we explore how articles on your company blog can be used as link-building assets to help your content reach the top spot in search engines.
Building backlinks to your content
For those of you who are new to the concept of backlinks, a backlink is when another site links to a page on your website. Your website’s backlink profile is considered an important ranking factor by search engines.
Think of it as a vote of confidence and a quality indicator. If an external site links to your website it may symbolise that:
- They think a specific product you offer is amazing and they want to help promote it and drive some of their traffic to your site
- They thought a particular piece of content you produced was unique and valuable, and would also align with the interests of their own site visitors.
Search engines recognise this and provide more favourable rankings to websites that not only have backlinks, but have backlinks from sites of high quality and relevance to the content.
In 2012 Google launched its Penguin algorithm update, penalising websites that used deceitful backlink acquisition tactics. For example, a lot of high-ranking websites bought links from ‘spammy’ websites or subscribed to ‘link farms’ (e.g. acquiring hundreds of low quality and unrelated website backlinks). That’s why modern day link building is more about quality and relevance, rather than quantity.
So, how does your content get high quality backlinks?
This whole process takes a bit of research and creativity in the planning phases.
You first need to decide on what topics your content will cover and then look at the content that already exists on that topic, written either by your competitors or other publications. By finding a unique angle to take on that topic and identifying unique points that weren’t covered by the existing articles, you can differentiate your content.
Getting your content in front of people who are interested in consuming it is where the link building starts. From here, you have two options for your blog post to acquire links: passive or active link building.
Passive link building
This is where you optimise your content for search (our SEO checklist can help), and share and amplify it on social media with the primary intention to maximise its exposure and drive awareness and reach.
Some members of your audience may have their own blog or work in the same industry as you. After reading (and loving) your article, they may decide to share your article over social media, through email or make reference to it (with a link back to your article on their own site).
Active link building
Taking things to the level, you can actively look for opportunities to share your content with other websites and publishers in order to acquire backlinks.
For example, infographics are a shareable format of content that can act as a valuable link-building asset. Not only are they eye-catching (provided they’re designed well) but they’re unique. You may contact a men’s fashion blog who recently published an article about the suit construction process. You have already written an article about this topic and, within the post, you included a beautifully designed infographic illustrating the whole process. You get in contact to introduce yourself, tell them who you are and what your business does. You can then ask if they’d be interested in using your infographic, with a backlink to your original article or website, within their article.
Good content for active link building acts as a win-win. In the above case, the infographic would bring value to their readers, and you get a highly relevant link back to your site from a fashion blog.
The real value of great content
Just like TV, radio or newspapers, blogs form a vital part of your marketing mix. Their ability to educate customers and act as a subtle advertisement, along with their ability to help boost your website rankings with keyword targeting and link building, highlights the immense value they can provide to your business. Failing to integrate articles into your content marketing strategy may see your business get left out in the cold.
If you’re looking to capitalise on the benefits of content marketing for your business, get in touch with Assemblo. We have qualified copywriters, content managers and SEO strategists to give you a holistic content marketing strategy that integrates with your overall marketing and business strategy.
In today’s diverse digital landscape, where marketing is done via multiple channels and audiences have become segmented, it’s crucial to have a multifaceted approach to your content marketing.
This is why it is important to consider the benefits of using both SEO and social media as part of your content marketing strategy.
Here are three good reasons why you need a mix of SEO and social media:
1. You Cannot Rely Solely On SEO To Get Results
SEO and social media go hand in hand when creating and distributing content that is interesting and engaging.
Assemblo’s SEO specialist Matt Dworakowski said the purpose behind content creation is to satisfy the search and information needs of your potential customers, while using targeted keywords within the copy to help improve your visibility in search engines.
But creating content and optimising it for search is only half the battle.
“The other half involves getting your content in front of the faces of your target audience, which is where social media comes in,” Dworakowski said.
“Understanding your audience is crucial in content marketing as it allows you to make informed decisions in regards to which social media platforms to use and what sort of content to create.”
2. The Social Media Audience Is Active And Growing
Go where your customers or potential customers are spending their time – on social media platforms.
According to a GlobalWebIndex report, people are spending an average of 1.72 hours on social media networks every day, which accounts for about 28 per cent of total daily time spent online.
“We’re actually spending more time on (social) networks now than in the earlier part of the decade – with the rise of the mobile internet, and the ability it affords us to connect to (social) networks at any time and from any location, being a major driver of this,” the report reads.
It would seem the social media bubble is far from bursting.
Speaking at the Interactive Minds Digital Summit in Melbourne last month, Funny or Die’s director of marketing Michelle Weil said social media was driving more traffic to their website than SEO.
In a social media environment, peers are also likely to recommend and share things they like, meaning your content has the potential to reach an audience who may not necessarily look for your brand via a traditional search engine, Weil said.
“We understand that SEO is important but social media is becoming more and more important,” she said.
3. SEO And Social Media Complement Each Other
When it comes to digital content, the goal is all about creating a positive and unique user experience.
Assemblo’s Head Strategy Director Steve de Niese said when web users search for content, the search engine works to return the best results.
“In the case of search, the best content means the most relevant, the most informative, the most credible and the best quality,” he said.
“Creating high quality, original content is a sure-fire way to succeed in both social media and SEO. It makes sense to focus on both avenues because your content will dominate.”
Find out how combining the use of SEO and social media can help your business and drive sales. Contact Assemblo today to discuss the best strategy for your brand.
Phone (03) 9079 2555, email email@example.com or get in touch by filling out the form below:
SEO is a wondrous marketing tool which, when done right, can bring new customers to your website, increase conversions, reduce your cost-per-lead, and ultimately make your business more profitable.
With great power, comes a great Google Bomb
Google Bombs are exceptional SEO campaigns that showcase the true power of this essential modern marketing tactic. Never underestimate the potential of proper link building and on-page optimisation.
Or you might end up like these guys:
The Microsoft Google Bomb is where it all started. Considered to be the first SEO blunder/stroke of genius (depending on how you view things), an unknown web master managed to optimise the homepage of the Microsoft website with a slightly different keyword research flavour. When someone, for some reason, searched for “more evil than Satan himself”, Microsoft’s homepage would appear in the search engine’s top ranking position.
4. George dub-ya
Microsoft may have been the first, but George W. Bush was definitely the biggest. Around the time that Bush ran for his second term of presidency, Google searches that matched the phrase “Miserable Failure” would return Bush’s White House biography page as the number one search result. It seems Google’s algorithm was fairly accurate even before Hummingbird.
Hacktivist group Anonymous not only possesses the skills to hack accounts and other top secret government, religious and corporate documents, they also do great SEO. In 2008, they hacked the Church of Scientology’s website, did some standard on-page optimisation and BAM! The church’s site ranked at the top of Google for the term “Dangerous Cult”. This what some in-depth keyword research and effective SEO can do.
In the modern era of music, where heavy beats and auto tune have made it easy to become a star, artists and bands still, somehow, manage to cop backlash *cough – Nickelback – cough*. But no band will ever – past, present, future, and in all undiscovered dimensions – be as bad as Creed. In 2001, when the rock band made its way on to main stream radio, searching for the term “worst band in the world” did not exactly show results for Creed… but Google did offer users an obvious suggestion.
1. Chuck Norris knows the last digit of Pi
Understanding keywords and phrases that customers use for searching on Google is an essential part of a content marketing strategy, and heavily influences site visibility. And this one is a great example. An enthusiast who seeks to find the mythical enigma known as Chuck Norris would typically search “find Chuck Norris”. If users hit the “I’m feeling lucky” button on Google, they are taken to a webpage that displays the following message:
This goes to show that web design and a user-friendly experience are just as important as SEO.
Although these are some fun and insightful examples, they show just how valuable and powerful SEO can be. With suitable on-page optimisation, backed by sound keyword research, credible link building, and an integrated content marketing strategy, your site can also experience the growth and exposure like these Google Bombs… but, you know, in a more positive way.
In today’s digital age, successful marketers are embracing a mix of online marketing in conjunction with their traditional marketing activities. In order to stay competitive, you need to understand how digital channels can support your campaigns and help you reach your audience.
Content marketing should be a part of your digital toolkit. Optimising your content for search, an area which continues to evolve, should be a major component in every marketer’s overarching strategy.
What can content marketing do for your brand?
A well devised content marketing strategy can:
- Increase visibility and drive more traffic to your websites
- Increase conversion rates
- Reduce Google AdWords bid spend
- Increase brand awareness and recognition
- Allow targeting audiences with more accuracy
- Reduce the costs for lead acquisition
- Boost the performance of above the line marketing activity
- Disrupt and hijack competitor marketing activity
The often lonely world of SEO
There’s a tendency to believe that doing some keyword research, building some links and posting a weekly article on your blog is where you content marketing strategy ends. The pitfall with this approach is that, often your SEO activity becomes isolated from your other marketing activities, resulting in less effective search campaigns with reduced conversion rates, and a disconnect between your campaign goals and how your audience is actually experiencing with your brand online.
By following best practice SEO, and integrating your content marketing in all stages of your marketing activity, you will be able to own the digital space.
Indiana Jones-ing over the gap
As with traditional marketing, consistency and adherence to your brand and marketing campaigns are the key to a successful content marketing strategy. Involve your content marketing team during the planning phase of campaigns, rather than at the end of the process. Make sure that your website and landing pages reflect your campaign and offers. Look for opportunities to integrate content marketing as a major part of your campaign engagement with your audience and tailor your campaign to suit the online space.
Some strategies include:
- Plan regular meetings between your internal marketing team and your digital agency throughout all stages of your campaign, to ensure goal and work congruency.
- Create relevant landing pages for social media posts. (e.g. link to an article on your own site, rather than another site)
- Look for easy wins by incorporating keywords your already rank well on, or that have low competition, in your radio ads and TVC’s. Focus on optimising for keywords your audience easily recall and type into search engines to find your brand or product.
- Regularly update the content on your website to match your current campaigns.
- Use analytics to inform the structure of your site, funnelling prospective customers towards a conversion and keeping people on your website longer.
Marketing will always be a highly competitive industry and, with the digital space constantly expanding, content marketing and SEO have never been more important. It can take a bit of a change to the way you plan campaigns, but it’s such a cost-effective way to reach customers and drive conversions.
By following best practice SEO, and integrating your content marketing in all stages of your marketing activity, you will be able to own the digital space.