Category Archives: Content Creation
Google couldn’t have been clearer about the importance of content strategy when it rolled out its latest organic search algorithm Hummingbird last year. The message was crystal clear that if your website content gives no value to its users, then Google will rank you down.
This was taken seriously by almost all digital marketers and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) folks, and necessary measures were taken somewhat without knowing exactly what to do! Through this article, I will cover the basic steps that could turn an average website into a success on the back of master content.
As per a report, the Google Hummingbird affected about 90 per cent of the searches globally when it was rolled out in September 2013. This significantly impacted the approach towards content marketing strategy, and highlighted their relevancy for the recognized SEO practices. Let’s take a look at the way one should precede with a successful content strategy in 2014.
Before Content Strategy Execution
1. Identifying the target consumer base and behavior
This forms the foundation of any content strategy. If you don’t know whom you’re targeting at and what are their needs and requirements with your brand? Then sir, you have lost your battle even before it got started!
Focus on WHY and NOT on WHAT your customers are most likely to visit your website, which can be done by a thorough keyword research and competition analysis.
Google looks for uniqueness and value in your website. If you are not able to provide that then there should be no question or doubt about why your website isn’t getting ranked up.
2. Devising the content plan
This involves the type of content that will be used on your website that can be textual or visual. Textual content includes tutorials, articles, guest blogs, guides and DIY information. Visual content strategy involves graphics, animations, videos and infographics.
Further, the content plan must correlate with your audience behavior and needs. Other important thing is to streamline the timeframe of content cycle, such that everything goes according to the plan and KPIs are optimized.
3. Content Promotion Plan
It is important to have a content marketing and promotion plan ready beforehand. This is when social media channels come into picture, which helps in both brand promotion and monitoring the overall content strategy success rate.
Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest are some of the best social media sharing platforms at the moment. It must be noted that Google+ provides Authorship that serves both SEO purpose and increases CTR by up to 150%.
Quality Content Strategy and Execution
Post keyword analysis, businesses should target the trending search queries that they can relate to the best with. The concept of keyword stuffing is outdated but very much relevant to the idea. You don’t want excess keywords on your webpage, since that could result in a penalty by Google. However, if your web page has value in it then Google could ignore the frequency of keywords in your data, but again that is entirely up to the search engine giant. So why take the risk?
1. Content Quality
The website content must have value and unique, and only then will it be able to capture Google’s attention. Hummingbird thrives on uniqueness and quality even though it’s still evolving; nobody knows what the search engine giant has in store for the future. So we have to adapt and stay on focus of our target objectives.
2. On-Page Optimization
A thorough site audit must be done for bad backlinks and necessary steps must be taken. If your website falls in the category where Google has manually penalized it, then sorry, there aren’t more options left. Bad links must be removed and remaining links disavowed, in order to file for reconsideration.
When it comes to optimizing website content, there should be absolutely no scope for same Meta tags, keyword stuffing and web page titles. This step is extremely crucial and has been a life saver for many websites.
3. Online Reputation Management (ORM) and Brand Awareness
This is perhaps the route through which you can analyze your brand outlook among your audience. Converting prospective leads into a customer is the business challenge, which can be done strategically with effective content marketing and promotion. Many SEO services have incorporated this plan of action and are getting good results likewise.
For this purpose, social media channels are a valuable resource and are the most beneficial when you want to begin a dialog with your customers. Building trustworthy and healthy relationships with likeminded folks via Twitter, LinkedIn or Quora is considered an absolute must for ORM. Guest blogging can utilized, but with reputed authors only.
If you have been interested in marketing and have had considerable success with it, you know that merely staying on the radar hasn’t quite worked for anyone. So, you kept reinventing and innovating, and that’s how you bumped into content marketing. You used all the tricks in your bag to ensure your content marketing endeavor keeps the competition at bay. But then, ‘staying on the radar’ and monotony caught up and you realized that even content marketing isn’t giving you same results anymore. So, what do you do then? You reinvent. And now, you inject Storytelling in your content marketing plan.
Even before content marketing took over (even before it was heard), storytelling had worked for brands through various sources such as radio, television, newspapers, etc. And now, it has made a foray into content marketing. Apparently, it has made quite the entry!
If you happen to be a digital marketer seeking new-fangled ways to market the content written in-house, storytelling would be the way to go.
What is Storytelling and How Does it Help You
To begin with, storytelling is recounting and sharing an experience you had with somebody or someone. That’s how you define it in the most elementary manner and that’s what you got to do with content marketing. When marketing is done in such a fashion, you give a personal touch tour your brand message and your campaign and manage to establish an instant connection with the customer. It goes without saying that the story must be convincingly good enough and impactful to establish that connection.
When you are giving your potential customer to read something, it’s supposed to make him curious. Filling the content with maudlin impulses with only bore him down and make repel your website and brand. Boil the content with interesting storytelling antics. If you weave a fascinating story around your brand, and if it ends up going viral, it would hardly take any time for your brand to perch its way at the top of your reader’s mind. Consequentially, it won’t take much time either for you to climb the popularity charts in the upper management ranks!
How Do You Create it
As they do in plays, movies and TV advertisements, you begin with create a setting. Once you have a canvas right in front of you, it will be easier to figure out how you can paint it for bringing out the best of colors and effects.
You can begin with a sentence like, “in the summer of 1995”, and there you have established a foundation. Segue on to telling your story from here by creating a character who shares his experience with the audience. Bring the past back and recount something that had a significant impact on you – significant enough that you have it firmly imprinted on your memory. Make the whole storytelling exercise interactive so that you are talking directly to the reader, instead of making them feel they are reading some sort of yawn-inducing essay.
The audience should be made to feel a part of the story. And if you happen to be the narrator, do not forget to also include yourself as one of the characters of the story. Do not extensively talk about introducing the characters and cut to the chase as soon as you can. Like all great stories in the world, suspense would take you far. The more intriguing is your suspense, more you draw in the reader to your story, and more time he spends absorbing it. Everything between commencement and conclusion must have a degree of curiosity and unpredictability to keep the reader guessing. And once you break the suspense, make sure you break it with robust facts and findings. Do not let the audience groan with disagreement and displeasure.
The conclusion is arguably the most important part of your story. Even if there were certain grey areas in the middle, a crackerjack of a climax will more than make up for it. Moreover, it will make your audience discuss the story and pave way for word-of-mouth marketing. If you manage to achieve al of the above with a precision, you are rest assured to perch yourself on a blazing trail to success.
Peter Milar is a prolific writer, who brings to the table a quantum of knowledge and creative writing skills. He works for Xicom Technologies, a market leader in the field of Custom .NET Development Company and Hire ASP.NET developer from Xicom.
When you are marketing your products or services, you really need to follow the trends so that you will not be left behind in this growing world. In order to be successful with your plans, you must take a path along with the development of technology. Your marketing strategies must be based on how technology is developing so that you can catch up on the newest happenings and allow your business or organization to be on its optimum level. Here are 5 marketing trends to boost your campaigns this coming 2014.
Influence of Pictures
In the past years, the importance of pictures is incredibly increasing. A lot of people in Social Media are more likely to post pictures than using statuses in order to express their feelings. It is because people can understand something better if they see something than just reading a very plain text.
Using pictures to market your product is one of the trends in the year 2014. It will improve your campaigning plans because people enjoy more and understand more when they see pictures plus texts than just providing plain texts without any artful background. A very great idea is to use eye-catching and high resolution images to attract people easily.
Videos do entice people, especially if the video is very presentable. Researchers found out that online video watchers are exceedingly increasing. Following the statistics of online video watchers, they are expected to be doubled by the year 2016. This is why videos are being very important when it comes to marketing. Using Social Media to advertise your videos is really vital for your campaigns to be success knowing that there are many people who can view them from time to time.
When creating videos, be sure that they only last for just a few seconds. Don’t put too much on your videos. They shouldn’t be very specific, but they must contain the story of the whole product or service in order for the viewers to understand and enjoy it.
Advertising through Mobile
As you plan your strategies for marketing, you should consider mobile phones. Know how your designs will be viewed on mobile phones. Since many people nowadays are fonder of using their android phones rather than laptops or computers, it is imperative that the designs of your ads are seen well on mobile phones to give wonderful experience for mobile users.
Fast Growing Social Media
Around 5 years ago, Facebook becomes more important than any other kind of Social Media websites. Today, many other fast social media sites are growing fast and time may come that they may be more popular than Facebook and placing your ads on these sites is an important strategy to boost your campaigns this 2014. The examples of these sites are twitter, instagram, pinterest, etc.
In the previous paragraph, it is mentioned that mobile phones are becoming much more important than before. Everything that can be done to give convenience to your customers is an important marketing strategy. Mobile payments nowadays are becoming popular. They are more convenient to be used than ATMs because customers don’t need to find ATM machines just to get cash. All they have to do is to use their mobile phones which always in their pocket to pay the product.
This article is written by Sarah del Rosario of UK Toner Cartridges. Uktonercartridges.co.uk products are premium quality products. Unlike some other less reliable websites, we do not sell inferior goods.
Content marketing, as part of a wider strategy, can make a world of difference to any business. It must, however, be done correctly. It’s easy to sign up to Facebook and anyone can start a YouTube channel – it’s what you do with them that counts.
The ever-evolving commercial landscape requires more thought from businesses than ever before, but that isn’t to say it has to be difficult to get attention. It’s now all about earning the attention of your target audience, not buying it or forcing it. This is achieved with the provision of high quality content.
What constitutes high quality content?
Content is a pretty broad term. In this context, it basically covers anything you’re able to create and publish in order to attract the attention of consumers. This is often text-based – articles, studies, news stories – but it also includes things like infographics, videos and even podcasts.
Why is content so important now?
People don’t respond well to pushy selling techniques anymore. While in the past, this was how things were done, technology – particularly the advancements of the Internet and mobile devices – has changed the way consumers want and need to interact with the businesses they choose to give their money to. Also, the web has led to a significant rise in the number of start-ups, making it even more difficult for small businesses to stand out among the competition.
Content must be relevant
Content marketing is all about reaching your target audience on their level. It’s about providing them with material they’ll find useful, informative and entertaining – and this needs to be done consistently to ensure attention is maintained.
Start by looking at the members of your target audience – what do they want and need? Make sure the content you create is original, accurate and, above all, relevant. A news piece on medical supplies won’t necessarily be of any interest to someone who’s interested in IT support. Try instead to cover the latest goings-on in the world of computer technology.
To ensure the content you create is useful, put yourself in the consumer’s shoes – what questions do they want answering? If you’re able to help them with an informative article, they’re much more likely to come back at a later date.
The importance of accuracy
Anything you publish online will be available for viewing across the whole world, so it’s important to get it right. For a start, inaccuracies can be embarrassing and can cause irreparable damage to a business’s reputation. This is particularly true when it comes to grammatical errors and spelling mistakes. As many high profile cases have shown, people will lose trust in a brand if they come across as unprofessional by making simple mistakes – and seeing as a company’s website is the first port of call for most info-hungry consumers, this is especially important online.
Inaccuracies can also cause legal issues for a site owner. For example, if a piece of text puts an individual, a business, or an organization in a bad light based on unverifiable information, lengthy and costly legal issues could follow.
Overall, using content to entice customers to your business is not just a shrewd move; it’s almost become a necessity. The use of traditional methods – or outbound marketing – simply won’t be enough to make a significant difference these days, especially without a considerable amount of money being thrown at it. Just take a look at the online activity of the world’s major companies. While they may all still use billboards and TV advertisements, most complete their strategies with social media profiles and viral video content – and the focus towards such methods is rapidly shifting.
Rebecca works for Direct Content, a company specializing in high quality content for businesses of all sizes. The firm, which is based in Cheshire, also provides content for a number of SEO consultancies and internet marketing agencies. More information can be found at http://www.directcontent.co.uk/.
Stickiness: It’s a word that website owners dream of either pleasantly or in nightmares. The aim of any good site is to get traffic in and then convert those surfing by in to a community of regular users. For someone with an internet addiction (I think I may well fall in this category) then the presence of stickiness can also be a problem.
I work as a copywriter for online retailer The Watch Hut, so trying to attract repeated viewings of sections of the site is my stock in trade. However, in spite of my line of work, I’m a borderline internet addict. It’s not hyperbole; it genuinely has become a dependency. I check the BBC News site from my phone before I even get out of bed in a morning and I check Facebook before I sleep. So what do these sites have in common, and how can their underlying stickiness be replicated?
The common thread running through these is that they have content that creates a connection with the reader by providing them with information of interest. In the case of the BBC, this is a mix of customisable news and human interest stories. Facebook reverses this formula.
Whilst many of the news organizations will post content and many people will follow this, the core of the content is the information from family and friends and people who you wish were your friends such as the celebrities, causes and brands that you follow. Facebook in particular has become successful through this and has kept its costs low. After all, it isn’t paying journalists to write this great content. It is relying on your friends to be interesting enough to attract advertisers. Your work is making Mark Zuckerberg a very rich man
It’s not just the content that we crave in stickiness, what we are really addicted to is the update. Newspapers and social media have an inbuilt advantage here in that they able to use information that is happening in the world around them to update their readers.
Let’s use a non web analogy to illustrate this. Say you are watching Sky News or its American sister station, Fox News. The stickiness is generated in large part by the “Breaking News” banners that scroll across the screen for even quite unimportant stories. You are drawn in by the immediacy of the content, not by the content itself.
Now let’s go back to Facebook. Internet addicts like me can pass time commenting on the mix of pictures and status updates. We have a similar reaction to the flashing of the notification banner that we do to the breaking news strap. We click it and look at the “breaking news” from our friends
The behavior is hard wired in to our psyche. Back when we were smart chimps, knowing where predators where, was the exact information we needed. We may have evolved a little, but the ability to profit, either financially or socially from being the first person to know is still with us.
So how can you use these techniques in building your site? After all, you are unlikely to have huge resources.
1.) Harness what you do know:
In the case of the company I work for, retailer The Watch Hut, we have a significant following of people who are interested in elements of the watches we sell. Our customers tend to be interested in fashion, or see a designer watch as a status symbol. We use our connections with our suppliers to update customers on celebrities who have been seen wearing the items, or in the case of the more male oriented ranges, the sports with which the watchmaker is associated.
We also report the latest trends from trade and fashion shows to our clients, particularly if something unusual is coming on sale shortly.
Unusual items also encourage sharing, which is a particularly important technique in creating identity online. Again, this is wired to our culture. If we are making friends, then an introduction from a existing friend is more likely to be successful in joining a group than simply walking up to them and saying hi.
2.) Encourage feedback:
Seeking to improve social signals we built our Facebook page as a means of encouraging and welcoming comments from customers past, present and future. By creating this space we are effectively carving out a little path of neurons that can be used to retarget those who we regularly interact and subsequently their friends in to regarding us as a company they would like to do business with. Whilst it would be uneconomic to take the bricks and mortar real estate we can buy the “mental real estate” of our customer base. These frequent visitors are often amongst the stickiest and our greatest promoters.
The future will probably bring with it more video. Video is great for creating sticky content as it engages the viewer on a more passive level. People are usually in a “lean back” relaxed position when watching video. This relaxation makes it easier for content to be accepted. If nothing else, the dwell time on each page will typically increase – great for marketing, but likely to bring even more pain to myself and fellow internet addicts.
Outsourcing has become a popular choice among many business owners worldwide and it is because of the great advantages outsourcing can offer a business.
From cutting down on operational costs and having access to greater knowledge, to streamlining businesses processes and increasing internal business productivity, outsourcing has proved to be an effecting tool for many companies and businesses.
The list of what tasks and jobs can be outsourced, is long, but below is a list of the most commonly outsourced tasks and jobs. You will find that most of these services are specialized services, requiring expertise and professional understanding in a certain, specialized field.
Information Technology (IT) Services
The outsourcing of Information Technology (IT) services has become very popular and it because of the great advantages outsourcing in this field can offer a business or company.
Having IT personal on staff can be quite expensive and, by outsourcing, it can cut costs. It also has the added benefit of having not only one or two IT employees at your disposal, but the knowledge of an entire company. Keeping up with advancing technologies are also more effective and less expensive when outsourcing.
Very few companies have a Graphic Designer on staff simply because it is not an employee they have a use for on a daily basis. Having the option to outsource graphic design services, businesses have access to a lot of talented designers at competitive prices. Another added bonus is the fact that a company can look through the portfolio of a freelancer or company and decide which styles best suits them and their companies.
What also makes outsourcing in this field so popular is the fact that a company has the choice of sticking with a tried and tested graphic designer, or looking for someone with fresher and more effective design skills. This is great for when you are looking to give your business or company a ‘visual’ makeover.
Copy Writing/Blog Writer
Having a Copy Writer or Blog Writer on staff to do tasks that come around once or twice a month, will be more expensive than outsourcing the task to a professional or to a company. There are quite a lot of freelance writers out there, and a company can choose a professional that best suits their style and needs. This gives the company more freedom in terms of content by allowing it to play around with content styles.
Outsourcing these types of tasks can be quite tricky, but asking for samples and ‘testing’ the writer, will help you decide if he or she is the right person for the job.
Not all business owners are equipped to deal with the business’s accounting and other financial needs. Outsourcing this task to another company can help to save time as well as cut down on costs. It also enables the business to have contact with a group of professionals in a field that he/she might not completely understand.
Web Developers and Web Development Companies are the type of professionals that specialize in the design and implementation of websites for example. A business needs only one website and website design, so outsourcing this once-off deal is much more cost effective.
Many smaller businesses cannot afford to have marketing team on staff twenty-four-seven and thus opt to outsource marketing and marketing related tasks. It is an effective way of getting a foot in a market and industry the business owner might not fully understand. Outsourcing to professionals in this field will allow a business to have a full marketing plan without having to use its own human resources.
Outsourcing the above services does not necessarily involve using another company or business, but freelance individuals as well.
Many services, including Graphic Design, Web Development, Copy Writing and Editing, as well as Programming and Coding, are many times outsourced to freelance professionals.
Great places to find Freelancers include institutions such as LinkedIn and Elance, to name but two examples.
Always remember to do your research before outsourcing any services to a company or professional. A portfolio of samples of work can be shown by many companies and freelancers in specialized fields such as Graphic Design and Writing services.
|Author Bio: Linda McMahon is an illustrator and writer at backofficepro. Her favorite blogs subjects are outsource and Graphic Design. She loves sharing her knowledge with others.|
If a brand wishes to survive on the Internet, then Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is truly imperative for it. SEO is a process through which a brand or company can boost its visibility in the result pages of different search engines. One of the strategies to do so is to publish SEO-based articles through which a company can promote its products or services on the Internet. Such articles also help in making a more renowned online presence and increasing traffic to your site. This makes article writing the most effective strategy of the marketing campaign online although there exists a myriad of other techniques for optimizing a Web site.
What Kind of Articles Can Work?
An article written for promoting products/services or sharing business vision or goals should be such that it makes a long-lasting impression in the minds of the readers. This can be only achieved by writing original, error-free, and relevant content. It is only such content that can trigger an interest in your business and make them feel that your business is truly genuine. It is this writing strategy that increases the chances of your site to be ranked at the top of search engine result pages. Here are some great ways for writing really effective SEO articles for attracting more traffic.
- Organic Content: This simply means writing original content that is useful and relevant. You can decide what kind of content you require if you know your targeted audience so that it becomes easy to build reliability in the minds of customers. Not only that, but also the original content encourages online crawlers to put your site ahead on result pages.
- Smart Keyword Usage: Customers can visit your site only if the search engines can spot and list it in the initial pages. This is possible only if you use well-searched keywords in your article. Keywords are the phrases that customers enter into the search box of the search engines. Therefore, these words must be present in your articles so that the search engines can find your site as per what customers have entered. However, it is a bad practice to fill your articles with repeated occurrence of keywords. This can irritate both crawlers and customers, and can spoil your reputation immediately. In order to know what keywords are in use, you can use tools such as Google Keyword.
- Keywords in Title/Meta Tags: It is vital to optimize title or meta tags with the relevant keywords that cater to the topic. The article’s title should be such that the customers come to know what kind of content they can expect in the article. The meta tag must also contain the keywords so that the search engine crawlers know what type of content the article provides. It needs to describe the information in the article. The characters that form the title are mostly limited to 60, and that the title needs to be descriptive and short. For example, if the main keyword is ‘acne treatment’, the title can be ‘5 tips for effective acne treatment’. If you take care of such rules, your site will not get penalized by search engines.
- Suitable Length: The article must not be too long or too short. Its length must have a satisfactory amount of words. If the content is too short, it seems that the article lacks proper research. On the other hand, if the article is too long, it may look exaggerated. The word count is not that vital for search engines but it will influence the number of customers visiting your site. Therefore, you need to identify the targeted audience for deciding a suitable length.
- Links: If you insert hypertext in your article, you can easily improve your visibility online. Hyperlinks form several reciprocal links from different high-quality sources. It is vital to obtain pertinent inbound links to make your site look reliable.
These are the elements you need to take care of while writing SEO articles. If they aren’t composed well, remember they will not be ranked well due to which your site won’t become popular at all. So, ensure that your articles are optimized well.
The author is a blogger and loves to write on topics related to SEO and online marketing. He is running a small campaign in his office wherein he is training people on how to ensure effective SEO after to get rid of penalty from algorithm updates.