Content Creation Doesn't Have to Be Intimidating
The golden ticket to high search engine rankings is quality content. Yes, content is king and the backbone of a solid inbound marketing strategy. But the idea of brainstorming, researching, writing and optimizing effective content on a daily or weekly basis can certainly trigger an ugly freak-out, especially if you’re out of time or not a confident writer.
So, let’s take some of the stress and guesswork out of content production by looking at eight tips for tackling the task of creating effective blog content to increase web traffic.
1. Identify your target audience.
It’s important to remember that you are not your target audience. Take some time to think about who your customer is and who you want to reach. Also, consider breaking up your audience into groups and then tailoring certain pieces of content to each group. One way to do this is to create content for certain levels, such as beginner, intermediate and expert.
2. Plan your posts.
Before you begin creating content to share on your blog and social media, brainstorm a list of topics and ideas. It’s also great to keep a running list to refer to when you get stumped. Remember that not all content has to be completely original. Do some research on the Internet, gather ideas, and link to other content that can elaborate on topics you’ve addressed. This creates a framework of information that your audience will appreciate.
3. Vary the types of content.
Here’s some welcome news for the non-writers: not all web content should be text-based.
Some ideas for getting outside of the text-box:
- Turn presentations into SlideShares.
- Create video content.
- Become a newsjacker. When something newsworthy is relevant to your business, share it and insert your opinion!
- Incorporate visual content, like memes, infographics, and photos.
- Conduct a Q & A.
- Teach a how-to.
4. Optimize your content.
Of course it would probably be helpful to utilize the services of an online marketing agency, but there are a few things you can do yourself in terms of SEO:
- Use keywords that address your services, location, and audience in a variety of terms.
- Use searchable titles.
- Incorporate inbound links--these connect back to other content and pages on your website.
5. Remember that length isn’t important.
It’s easy to get caught up on how long you think an article should be and lose sight of your purpose. So, remember that there is no optimal length for web content. Google is looking for good content, and good content is often comprehensive, but not necessarily long.
6. Incorporate data-based content.
This is another way to avoid writing a text-heavy piece of content. Data often makes a statement using very few words. In addition, it’s very shareable and can easily be made into a graphic. Another way to organize data-based content is to list the information and then give your opinion or expound on how this information might impact your industry, for example.
7. Invite guest bloggers.
This is often a great co-marketing opportunity and a chance to offer your audience a new perspective. Invite other industry experts and thought-leaders to write content for your blog and then link back to their site. This is usually a win-win: new content for you and greater exposure for them.
8. Consider the formatting.
You probably know to edit and proofread your content before you hit “publish,” but do you always consider the way your article looks? Bulky paragraphs are often tedious and discouraging for readers, so keep your audience engaged by incorporating a variety of layouts:
- Bulleted lists
- Short paragraphs
- Different fonts
We hope you’ll incorporate a few of our tips, and we look forward to seeing your content around the web!
By Drew Himel