The world-wide-web consumes fresh, juicy content like most people consume fast food. But here today, gone the next it ‘aint. Indeed, quality content stays visible on the web longer than a coupon or sale promoting your company’s new product. Content generation – good, optimized content – is an investment for web businesses, and today almost every business is a “web business”. Driving sales and leads is the top marketing goal of the majority of organizations, therefore, content generation and marketing should be included in the marketing arsenal of contemporary organizations.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing is the creation and publication of quality, original content for the purpose of generating leads, building a brand and enhancing visibility online. Content marketing can take the shape of blog posts, case studies, white papers, videos and photos. Marketers have employed content marketing as a strategy for marketing their web site more often than search engine optimization (SEO). Indeed, content marketing enhances SEO efforts, by putting the company’s subject matter expertise on display. Researchers found that eighty-two percent of B2B marketers now employ content marketing as a strategy in their marketing programs. Coming in at a distant second place is search engine marketing at seventy percent, followed by events at sixty-eight percent, public relations at sixty-four percent and print/TV/radio advertising at thirty-two percent.
What are the options for content generation for a business owner? Well, for starters, you can write the articles yourself. If sitting at the keyboard is not your favorite past-time, set up the voice to text option under the ‘Accessibilities’ link and talk it. Another option – hire someone from the local paper or do something really nice and talk to the advisor of your town’s high school newspaper to find budding reporters who would enjoy seeing a by-line on your web site. Discuss your proposal with school newspaper’s faculty advisor and principal, or dean if necessary, before approaching a young student with your literary project.
Finding a good writer is tough, but it can be done
Can’t find someone experienced in your field? Ask an expert to contribute content to your site. Have your expert write an article and provide a link back to the author’s site. This builds authority for the expert, it adds credibility to your web content, it builds trust, and readers get expert, authorities’ information.
Many business owners are better writers than they give themselves credit for. A site owner knows his demographic, understands the mission of his or her web site – in fact, business owners are the ‘content experts’ when it comes to any company’s mission.
Content curation – also referred to as content syndication – is the process of finding, organizing and sharing content and has gained strength as a top marketing strategy. Choose your best articles and submit them to sites like ezine, helium, zimbio, goarticles and other sites that distribute articles and blog posts for free. Add a link in the author’s bio box so readers can easily visit your web site. And many web-entrepreneurs will use your content on their site (with your link in-tact) which will build up your link popularity. Webmasters can simply download the article, post it to their site and provide a back link to the author’s site in exchange for the use of the content. The benefit to syndicated content is that it provides readers with articles and information that they have never seen before. That’s good.
Content marketing is only going to become more important going forward, whether you market to other businesses or to the general public. Choose a web hosting provider that offers Word Press, a blogging module that makes it easy. Submit your blog to Google, Ask, Yahoo, Bing and the other search engine powerhouses. But don’t forget to submit your blog to technorati.com – the search engine for blogs. When people are looking for the latest information, or a different point of view, they turn to technorati.com to find the latest, best information – fast.
Quality Blog Content
Quality content is link bait. It is useful in building a site community – a collection of fans that comes back daily, and blogging is the fastest way to distribute your online content. Blogs are easy to update so you can announce sales or specials without having to call in your programmer. And, blog posts create good-will because you’re providing solid, unbiased information, not a steaming pile of sales hype.
Keep your Website Current
Keep your site current. Change content at least twice a week. The more the better. In no time, search engine bots will recognize your new content in under an hour and you can build more SERPs links with every post you make. Market your content, provide quality content, and work closely with the best article directories who can get your content out to other webmasters who will use that content on their own sites.
Yep, the W3 is a giant mill that consumes content by vast amounts daily. Keeping your site fresh, your content high-quality, will build your brand as well as your conversion ratio.
Isn’t that why you built that web site in the first place? You bet it is!