You’ve heard it before: content is king. But with the changing Google algorithm, our content marketing efforts must change, too. And it all starts with great content. Here’s why:
1. The Rise of Content as a Service
Content as a Service is a new field in content marketing. Instead of thinking of the work we’re doing as “content marketing” that places the focus of the content on the business, we want to develop content as a service. The service might be education, as it often is when we build “thought leadership” pieces, like this one. But it could be anything – a look inside the company, some humor, or company news. Approaching content with a service mentality makes our investment in great content one that carries our brand’s reputation forward.
2. Search Engine Optimization Has Gotten Very, Very Hard
Long gone are the days of throwing keywords in an article and ranking. Now, Google wants to promote the best, most reliable, most trustworthy content on the Web. What does this mean for your site? You’ll have to develop fantastic content for very unlikely keywords and show Google how beneficial your content is to users. As you begin to develop a brand reputation and gain authority in the search engines, you can target the keywords you really want to go for. This takes time, and publishing bad content only makes it harder – if not impossible – to rank for anything.
3. Your Content Must Completely Meet Its Objective
When you write great content, you’ve got a customer with a problem in mind. If that customer finds your website, will they be satisfied that their objective was complete? Can you end their search right here, right now? If you can’t, then they’re going to click Back and continue searching for a solution that can. A 300-word article may begin to explain the problem to the customer, but unless you can conclude it with a strong solution, provide a clear call to action, and make the customer absolutely sure why they ought to care, they’re going to leave unsatisfied, likely never to return.
4. Great Content Gets More Mileage
When you build great content from the start, you’ll have it for years to come. If you’re going to invest significant time in some content, it should be “evergreen” – that is, content that isn’t going to go out of date for three or more years. You can continue to use this evergreen content throughout your marketing materials by repurposing it. You can take an infographic and build a PowerPoint slide out of it. You can put it in a book. You can build a blog out of it. You can pitch chunks of content to bloggers as a PR opportunity. You can make bite-sized pieces for the news media. When you find a message worth communicating, and when you’re able to invest in content that communicates it, you’ll have that pillar of messaging that’s a part of your company for years to come.
5. Bad Content Is A Cost — Great Content Is An Investment
It should be clear by now that bad content can have real and lasting costs outside the cost to have it produced. It can be damaging to SEO and your brand’s reputation in the eyes of customers. It doesn’t add a lot of value, since it’s company-centric rather than service-centric. On the other hand, great content is an investment. It can be repurposed into multiple media, it remains evergreen and relevant for years to come, and it provides a service to your customers, rather than to your company.
For more information about Content Marketing and how to get started…connect with us!
I'm the Director of Digital Services and Partner at Ballantine, a family-owned and operated direct mail & digital marketing company based in New Jersey. and started in 1966 by my great uncle!