It is for good reason content marketing is talked about at such great lengths, it works and works well. Not only this, but successful content marketing doesn’t have to be resource heavy or be out of reach for smaller businesses. In fact, it is possible to create decent content that gets results in just a few easy steps, as the following case study will demonstrate:
How we Ranked #5 for ‘PPC’ – Case Study
The post was a well thought out, engaging piece of content which immediately received positive feedback from readers and users. After a week or so of promoting on social channels and reacting to any comments or mentions the post was – for the most part, left alone.
Over the next few months, the post continued to be shared on social media and started to pick up some very relevant backlinks and as you would expect this was reflected in Google Analytics.
As of yesterday the post now ranks for a wide range of hyper relevant terms as well a range of highly competitive and generic keyword terms such as ‘PPC’, which the post ranks #5 for.
Why Should You Care?
This example perfectly illustrates the power of SEO and content marketing for any business, demonstrating why both are fundamental in increasing traffic to your site – and in turn, increasing business. Content marketing, specifically blogging (in this case), allows you to scale your domains reach significantly. Each post presents another opportunity to drive qualified traffic – some of which will convert. In addition to this, it will provide a great opportunity to develop a community and readership, build thought leadership and provide regular fresh content for your domain, which of course Google loves.
If all that isn’t enough the links and social shares good content can help achieve will support the rankings of the entire domain, helping important service pages as well as blog posts to rank.
How to Keep it Simple
You’re most likely aware that creating good content can take significant amounts of time and preparation. Like most agencies, the vast majority of our time is spent on client work and as a result we sometimes need to keep our own Digivate related content marketing efforts simplified, fast and effective. The good news is that this simplified approach below can still lead to content gold.
Step 1- Idea Generation
- Target – it’s important to have a target audience in mind as this helps shape content that is more likely to succeed. Plus, once the post is complete, you will already know or at least be half way to understanding who to get the content in front of.
- Mine industry news with an eye on content opportunities – industry news will keep you informed on the hot topics and trends. It will also inform you which pieces of content do well in your vertical and why. Doing this should mean the initial brainstorming for content is fast and effective.
- Explore Buzz Sumo – A quick search in this awesome tool can reveal the most successful content on a subject or a domain in seconds. Use it to inspire your own efforts or reverse engineer the content’s success for your own gains.
- Harness the power of Google Suggest for content ideas that are being searched for with UberSuggest
- Brainstorm – who doesn’t like one? Grab a few team members, let them know you are intending a short brainstorm session and give them some time to prep. Reconvene and let ideas roll in. Although you want the process to be fast, the preparation for the brainstorm is important as it will save time in the long run and mean no one comes to the table empty.
Step 2 – Content Creation
Designate a writer and give them a deadline. Give them a good brief, especially if they were not involved in the idea generation process. Have one or two team members available to help with the editorial process, proofing and providing helpful suggestions where needed.
If the content wasn’t already created to target a particular keyword phrase then after it is complete identify natural language keyword phrases occurring in the post that reflect the subject. Once you have identified them, place them in Google’s Keyword Planner or Google Trends to get an idea of how often these terms are being searched for. Once you have a keyword phrase you happy with optimise the post around those terms.
Another important element to keep tabs on is the length of the content. While there is definitely space for shorter content pieces, it is worth keeping in mind that posts over 1000 words tend to perform better in search, in fact recent research suggests 1,600 words is the optimal length. That said, as a rule, content should not be for contents sake, therefore only expand the content if you have time, it adds to the piece and it does not impact on the quality.
Step 3 – Amplify
Getting your content in front of the right type of people is vital to its success. Ideally, you will have a list of influencers that you can tweet or email about your content. Depending on your vertical social channels such as Reddit, LinkedIn and StumbleUpon can also play a big roll.
In the PPC blog post featured, Reddit played a great part in providing the initial push. The PPC sub-reddit found it both useful and shareable and as a result it hit the number #1 spot for the top monthly posts, ensuring we had a steady stream of referrals.
Pro tip: Be sure to have a think about your content before you post it on the likes on Reddit as constantly pushing out self-promoting posts will quickly receive negative feedback; make sure it’s the top 5% of the content you are producing that you are promoting.
Another key to the posts success was reaching out to the companies featured in the article. Four out of the ten people/companies featured in the Top 10 Most Creative PPC Campaigns of All Time! tweeted it out to their followers, and why not, it’s always nice to be recognised for your work.
As most know, content marketing works and can drive significant amounts of organic and referral traffic to your site. The process doesn’t have to be convoluted to be successful.