Just because you’ve dressed up your house for a party, doesn’t mean people will come. You’ve got to send out the invites, set up the buffet, hire the entertainers – and give people a reason to show up.
The same thing goes for websites. The site might be built, now it’s time to get your house in order (Technical SEO), build out an attractive net of content with your prime audience in mind (part of the ongoing work of SEO), and invite consumers to visit your site through social, paid search and other key strategic backlinks.
Essentially, your main goal should be to make content on your site so alluring and targeted, it will become a hub to people searching for what you have to offer. Through the web and ecommerce best practices, we’ve learned to set up websites so that there’s absolutely no friction for your audience to get where they want to go (and where you want them to go) such as checking out, sharing a blog post, signing up for a newsletter, etc.
Content Marketing, Drive Traffic – Boost Revenue
The Internet, and particularly Google, thrives on fresh content. Creating content in an area that is of value to your customers will regularly bring consumers onto your site whenever they are searching for key terms. If I own an ice cream shop, you know I’m going to be writing an article on the 10 newest, wackiest ice cream flavors this year.
Creating and maintaining a content strategy targeting your customers is part of what Snap Agency does well, along with a mastery of Google Analytics, eCommerce and conversion optimization. But time and time again, content strategy allows us to help clients get their proverbial online house into the most alluring shape possible, driving traffic through informational resources and unique content.
So many agencies in our area and around the world can build a beautiful website for you that does next to nothing. Even if I have every piece of delicious photography your business has, and my web assets are top notch, and my code is W3C certified, and the contact form is ready to field inquiries, you may be at a major disadvantage without a content strategy. This is why WordPress and other content management systems make so much sense these days. Websites are most effective when they feature new, fresh content regularly that serves as an overarching funnel to bring people in.
To create an effective content strategy, survey the current competitive landscape and what seems to relate to your audience the best. It’s been said that the way people consume content largely depends on the time of the week that they are consuming it on.
With this information, it’s easier to set up a schedule to appeal to the different times of the week.
Monday: post a how-to piece
Tuesday: post a thought-leader piece (new technologies or a case study)
Wednesday: start, or add to a content hub (a larger area of your website dedicated to an ever-expanding demonstration of concentrated knowledge of a particular area.)
Thursday: get people riled up with something that’s a firestarter, or a strong opinion post
Friday: post a fun and perhaps wild piece. We’ve started to think of these different kinds of categories as “content food groups” (raisin bran, fish, steak and eggs, kung-pow chicken and ice cream cake) and strategize how to implement these for our clients, for maximum effectiveness for their audiences.
Getting To Know Your Audience
Creating a content strategy sounds daunting, but it is very doable – even for the novice. A content strategy drills down into your (or your client’s) brand, detailing every single aspect about your business, competition and audience. Let’s get into the nitty gritty.
First, we start with your brand voice, tone and image. Answer these simple questions:
What is your brand’s promise?
What personality would your brand have if he were a human?
What is the problem your brand solves?
Why wouldn’t the consumer pay attention to your brand?
Next, you want to define your audience. Start by building three archetypes of your typical, or desired consumer. This could be anything from senior citizens, to pet owners, to black belt ninjas.
After that, list every single unique value proposition your business has to offer. The more you think of the better, as you can always use those to insert into thin content to boost your brand’s appeal. Although these little benefits may not be why your customer is paying attention to your content, it’s what will pull them into the awareness stage of your funnel, and it’s what will make them convert in the end.
Finally, you need to research where your online audience hangs out. Whatever industry you’re in, there’s always a niche forum, publication or website to promote through. Do some searching on Google by typing “forum: insert industry/product/service here,” or “niche: insert industry/product/service here.” This will have the best niche categories for your industry, product or service for you to start spreading your influence.
Generating Content Ideas for Business
Coming up with the ideas themselves are often the toughest part of content marketing. But at least we know have delved deep within your audience and know who we’re speaking to and why they will listen. That’s half the battle right there. Finding topics that relate to them may not be easy for a single person. But get some tools on your side and your job will be easy.
The Keyword Planner through Google is your best friend for content creation. You’ll find topics that searchers are already using, with the option to split them up geographically and demographically. Additionally, you’ll see search volume, trends and past behaviors. All useful information for the creative brainstorm.
On top of that, you need to decide what type of content those searchers like. This may take some time and experimentation, but why not start big with a video or podcast? If you’re a little more reserved, a white paper might do just fine. With content marketing, you can pick your poison, with things like:
The sky’s the limit when it comes to content strategy. Just try out a variety of tactics and see how your audience responds to each, and determine what content needs to stay and what needs to go.
Content Strategy Creation
When you’re creating a strategy, you’re trying to figure out four very important aspects of content marketing for your business. After you know your audience and content requirements, you can go ahead and write your content strategy. These four pieces of criteria will give your content marketing focus, while standardizing your content creation process:
This determines what your content needs are, what your content consists of and why your audience will pay attention. Diffuse the drilldown above into the most important aspects of your content mandatories and put them in ink.
Workflow determines how ideas generated will be transformed into compelling pieces of content. Who will formulate content and how will they see it through production? Will it be a team effort, or an individual? Figure out how to determine opportunities, using an analytics tool.
This is pretty straightforward. We already know where your audience is hanging out. Get your content onto those sites and elsewhere and make it accessible to those searching for that information.
Who will analyze content data, user behavior and whatnot in order to determine repurposing value and standardization? This is a very important when trying to cut down time or expenses spent on content marketing (or marketing in general).
Beyond this, it’s important to have your website formated for SEO best practices to bring people into your fold. Great copywriting will help in keyword placement, CTA language and brand voice in general. Giving your audience an opportunity to contact you or sign up for your newsletter, perhaps at the end of each article, increases your chance to make a conversion.
A beautiful website is just a shiny piece of garbage without strong calls-to-action, compelling content and an actionable strategy in place for keeping it fresh and being of the most value possible to your core demographic and the people that stumble across it on the web.
Join us in the journey of learning all about how we can make the most over-the-top successful websites possible, drive traffic, and obliterate the competition. Get some actionable and constructive ideas now from our talented team, and start a conversation that could lead to a strategic partnership now.