How to Build the Right Content Marketing Strategy for SEO Growth
Posted by AlliBerry3
Delivering content material that finest serves the wants of customers is definitely top-of-mind for many SEOs since the Hummingbird algorithm replace and subsequent buzz round RankBrain. It sounds straightforward sufficient in idea, however what does that really imply in follow? Many SEOs consider that they are already doing this by driving their content material technique by advantage of keyword analysis alone.
The issue with solely utilizing key phrases to drive your content material technique is that not your whole viewers’s content material wants are captured in search. Ask your nearest customer support consultant what questions they reply day by day; I can assure that you simply received’t discover all of these questions with search quantity in a keyword analysis software.
Keyword analysis also can tempt you to develop content material that your model actually shouldn’t be creating since you don’t have something distinctive to say about it. Positive, you would find yourself rising natural visitors, however are these going to be changing clients?
Transferring away from a keyword-first-driven content material technique and into an audience-centric one will put you in a greater place for creating SEO content material that converts. Don’t get me flawed — there’s nonetheless an vital place for keyword analysis. However it belongs later in the course of, after you have carried out a deep dive into your viewers and your individual model experience.
That is an method that the finest content material entrepreneurs excel at. And it’s one thing that SEOs can make the most of, too, as they try to present extra related and higher-quality content material for your goal audiences.
How is an audience-focused content material technique totally different from a keyword-focused content material technique?
A content material advertising technique begins with the audience and dives deeper into understanding your model’s experience and distinctive worth proposition. Keyword analysis is nice at uncovering how individuals speak about matters related to your model, however it’s limiting when it comes to viewers understanding.
Take into consideration one among your potential buyer’s journey to conversion. Is search the solely channel they make the most of to get info? If you’re gathering lead info or serving up remarketing advertisements, hopefully not. So, why ought to your viewers understanding be restricted to keyword analysis?
A content material technique is a holistic plan that tackles questions like:
- Who’s my viewers?
- What are their ache factors and wishes?
- What kinds of content material do these individuals need to devour?
- The place are they at present having conversations (on-line or offline)
- What distinctive experience does our model supply?
- How can we match our experience to our viewers’s wants?
Discovering your distinctive content material angle
The important thing to connecting together with your viewers is to develop your distinctive content material angle that finds intersections between what your model’s experience is in and your viewers’s ache factors. The Content Marketing Institute refers to this as a “content tilt” as a result of it entails taking a bigger matter and tilting it in your individual manner. Defining your model’s experience could be harder than it seems on the floor.
It isn’t unusual for manufacturers to say their product is what makes them distinctive, but when there’s a competitor on the market with the identical normal product, it’s not distinctive. What makes your group totally different from opponents?
Here is an instance
After I labored for Kaplan Financial Education, knowledgeable licensing and examination prep supplier model underneath Kaplan Skilled, discovering our tilt was an actual problem. Kaplan Monetary Schooling has lots of product strains all inside monetary companies, however the viewers for every is totally different. We would have liked a tilt that labored for the complete Career Corner content material hub we have been creating. What we realized is that our core viewers all has an enormous ache level in widespread: coming into the monetary companies business both via insurance coverage or securities (promoting shares and bonds) has low boundaries to entry and excessive turnover. Everybody coming into that job market wants to understand how to not solely move their licensing examination(s), but additionally achieve success as professionals too, each in the early years and in addition in the years to come.
Kaplan Monetary Schooling’s largest content material opponents create very factual content material — they’re web sites like Investopedia, Wikipedia, and governing our bodies like FINRA and state authorities departments. However Kaplan Monetary Schooling has one thing going for it that its opponents don’t: an enormous community of scholars. There are different licensing examination prep suppliers that compete with Kaplan Monetary Schooling, however none that cowl the identical breadth of exams and persevering with training. It is the solely model in that business that gives licensing training as people progress via their monetary careers. “From rent to retire,” as the entrepreneurs say.
We made our content material tone extra conversational and solicited enter from our large scholar and teacher community to assist new professionals be extra profitable. We additionally used their quotes and insights to drive content material creation and make it extra relatable and personalised. All of our content material tied again to serving to monetary professionals achieve success — both as they’re getting licensed or past — and reasonably than merely telling individuals what to do, we leveraged content material to enable our present college students and instructors to educate our potential college students.
Chances are you’ll be pondering… so I can solely write content material that matches on this tilt? Isn’t that limiting?
As SEOs, it may be actually arduous to let go of some keyword alternatives that exist in the event that they don’t match the content material technique. And it’s true that there are in all probability some key phrases on the market you would create content material for and improve your natural visitors. But when they don’t match together with your audience’s wants and your model’s experience, will or not it’s the form of visitors that is going to convert? Seemingly not. Actually not sufficient to spend sources on content material creation and to distract your self out of your bigger technique goal.
How to construct your content material technique
1. Set your targets.
Begin at the finish. What’s you might be finally attempting to accomplish? Would you like to improve leads by a sure share? Would you like to drive a sure quantity improve in gross sales? Are you attempting to drive subscribers to a e-newsletter? Doc these targets first. It will assist you determine what sort of content material you need to create and what the calls-to-action must be.
When you’re a enterprise like Kaplan and leads are your final objective, a confirmed technique is to create ungated content material that gives good insights, however leaves room for a deeper dive. Have your calls-to-action level to a gated piece of content material requiring some type of contact info that goes into extra depth.
A enterprise like a automotive dealership goes to have a major objective of getting individuals into their dealership to purchase a automotive. Their content material doesn’t essentially want to be gated, however it ought to have an area spin and communicate to widespread questions individuals have about the automotive shopping for course of, in addition to present the human parts that make the dealership distinctive to set up belief and present how clients shall be handled. Belief is very vital in that business as a result of they’ve to fight the used automotive salesman stereotype.
2. Establish your major viewers and their ache factors.
The subsequent step is to determine who you are concentrating on together with your content material. There are lots of people at your disposal to enable you with this a part of the course of. Inside your group, contemplate speaking to these groups:
- Buyer Service
- Gross sales
- Technical Help
- Product Administration
- Product Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
These are sometimes the individuals who work together the most with clients. Discover out what your viewers is scuffling with and what content material might be created to assist reply their questions. You may also do a few of this analysis by yourself by looking out boards and social media. Subreddits inside Reddit associated to your matter could be a goldmine. Different instances there are energetic, associated teams on social media platforms like LinkedIn and Fb. When you’ve ever been to the MozCon Fb group, you understand how a lot content material might be created answering widespread questions individuals have associated to SEO.
three. Decide your model’s distinctive experience.
Once more, dig deeper and work out what makes your model actually distinctive. It probably isn’t the product itself. Take into consideration who your subject material specialists are and the way they contribute to the group. Take into consideration how your merchandise are developed.
Even experience which will appear boring on the floor could be extraordinarily worthwhile. I’ve seen Marcus Sheridan communicate a few instances and he has one among the most compelling success tales I’ve ever heard about not being afraid to get too area of interest with experience. He had a struggling swimming pool set up enterprise till he began running a blog. He knew his experience was in swimming pools — shopping for fiberglass swimming pools, particularly. He answered each query he might consider associated to that purchasing course of and have become the world thought chief on fiberglass swimming pools. Is it a glamorous matter? No. However, it’s useful to the actual viewers he wished to attain. There aren’t lots of of hundreds of individuals looking out for fiberglass pool info on-line, however the ones which can be looking out are the ones he wished to seize. And he did.
four. Work out your content material tilt.
Now put your solutions for #2 and #three collectively and work out what your distinctive content material angle will seem like.
5. Develop a listing of potential content material matters based mostly in your content material tilt.
It’s time to brainstorm matters. Now that you realize your content material tilt, it’s quite a bit simpler to provide you with matters your model must be creating content material about. Plus, they’re matters you realize your viewers cares about! It is a good step to get different individuals concerned from round your group, from departments like gross sales, product administration, and customer support. Simply be sure your content material tilt is obvious to them prior to the brainstorm to make sure you don’t get off-course.
6. Conduct keyword analysis.
Now that you simply’ve acquired a listing of excellent content material matters, it’s time to actually dive into long-tail keyword analysis and work out the finest keyword targets round the matters.
There are many good instruments on the market to enable you with this. Listed below are just a few of my go-tos:
- Moz Keyword Explorer (freemium): When you’ve got it, it’s a fantastic software for uncovering key phrases as questions, taking a look at the keyword aggressive panorama, and discovering different associated key phrases to your matter.
- Keywordtool.io (free): One in all the solely keyword discovery instruments on the market that gives you keyword analysis by search engine. If you’re trying for YouTube or App Retailer key phrases, for occasion, this can be a nice thought technology software.
- Ubersuggest.io (free): Kind in a single keyword and Ubersuggest gives you a plethora of different concepts organized in a listing alphabetically or in a phrase cloud.
7. Create an editorial calendar.
Primarily based in your keyword analysis findings, develop an editorial calendar for your content material. Make sure that to embrace what your keyword goal(s) are so if in case you have another person growing the content material, they know what’s vital to embrace in it.
Listed below are a pair sources to try for getting began:
- HubSpot’s free editorial calendar templates (Google Sheet or Excel)
- Content Marketing Institute’s free editorial calendar template (Google Sheet)
eight. Decide how to measure success.
As soon as you realize what content material you are going to create, you’ll want to work out how you may measure success. Persevering with on with the Kaplan instance, lead technology was our focus. So, we targeted our efforts on measuring leads to our gated content material and conversions of these leads to gross sales over a sure time interval. We additionally measured natural entrances to our ungated content material. If our natural entrances have been rising (or not rising) disproportionate to our leads, then we’d take deeper dives into what particular person items of content material have been changing nicely and what items weren’t, then make tweaks accordingly.
9. Create content material!
Now that every one the items are there, it’s time to do the creation work. That is the enjoyable half! Along with your content material tilt in thoughts and your keyword analysis accomplished, collect the info or analysis you want and description what you need the content material to seem like.
Take this easy article known as How to Get Your Series 7 License for instance. To turn out to be a registered consultant (stockbroker), you’ve to move this examination. The first keyword goal right here is: Sequence 7 license. It’s an extremely aggressive keyword with between 2.9K–four.3K month-to-month searches, in accordance to the Keyword Explorer software. Different vital semantically associated key phrases embrace: how to get the Sequence 7 license, Sequence 7 license necessities, Sequence 7 Examination, Normal Securities Registered Consultant license, and Sequence 7 license move charge.
Primarily based on our content material tilt and aggressive panorama for the major keyword, it made the most sense to make this right into a how-to article explaining the course of in non-jargon phrases to somebody simply beginning in the business. We completely exact-match every keyword goal, however the matters are coated nicely sufficient for us to rank on the entrance web page for all however one among them. Plus, we received the Google Reply Field for “how to get your Sequence 7 license.” We additionally positioned ourselves nicely for anticipated future searches round a brand new licensing part known as the SIE examination and the way it’ll change the licensing course of.
As soon as you have created your content material and launched it, like with any SEO work, you should have a lag earlier than you see any outcomes. Make sure to construct a report or dashboard based mostly in your content material targets so you’ll be able to preserve monitor of the efficiency of your content material regularly. When you discover that the progress isn’t there after a number of months, it’s a good suggestion to return via the content material technique and assess whether or not you’ve acquired your tilt proper. Borrowing from Joe Pulizzi, ask your self: “What if our content material disappeared? Would it not go away a niche in the market?” If the reply isn’t any, then it’s positively time to revisit your tilt. It’s the hardest piece to get proper, however when you do, the outcomes will observe.
When you’re excited by extra dialogue on content material advertising and SEO, try the latest MozPod podcast. Episode eight, SEO & Content Strategy:
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