Research conducted by Stockholm School of Economics goes to show that offering continuous value to consumers creates advertising equity that compels users to take action. The research basically confirms the definition of content marketing provided by Content Marketing Institute that states:
Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
In terms of content marketing, consistent content stands for advertising equity. You have to give consistent value to the readers in order to attract new and retain already clearly-defined audience.
When it comes to SEO and content marketing, what this research shows is that running long term campaigns takes priority over the short term ones. Expensive short term content marketing campaigns that might catch on have less value than long lasting high quality content ones.
Google, mobilegedon and content marketing
Content marketing agencies point out that during the past two decades, SEO as an advertising method has been slowly growing in importance to the point where not including it into your advertising arsenal could leave serious dents in your business.
There are many atoms in the molecule of SEO, however the essence – nucleus, is content.
Many things translate from content marketing to SEO, with consistency being the most important one.
Maybe a piece of old news, but we are well past the point at which mobile searches overcame the number of those done on desktops. Taking a stand as a leading search engine, Google has taken notice of such trend and acted accordingly by implementing a mobile friendly ranking algorithm back in April 2015. In May this year there was another update to the algorithm imposing further changes on the mobile search results.
These updates are of great importance for the local SEOs, as most of the mobile searches are done for local inquiries. As of now, SERPs will prioritize local results in mobile searches, which only proves that building local resources (backlinks, citations, locally focused content, etc.) will yield higher value than the global ones.
Curating local content
So, how should one go about forming content strategy aimed at their local audience? First things first, get to know your audience! Identifying your target group as well as identifying their interests is an integral part of any locally-oriented campaign.
Facebook Audience Insights, a great tool that helps you shape the understanding of potential local consumers, not only displays the geographical data about the people in your vicinity, but also the demographics, page likes, purchases, facebook usage statistics, and other.
Once you have that information, it is time to see what kind of content is popular locally. This can be done “by hand”, but why bother when there are awesome tools for content exploration. Depending on the aim of your content strategy, you can use Buzzsumo, Ahrefs and the latest one – MOZ Content. If your goal is to generate backlinks through valuable content, both MOZ Content and Ahrefs will, alongside social share counts, generate backlink analysis of the content you are analysing. On the other hand, if you’re purely aiming at social media shares, Buzzsumo will be just enough.
Content research can be done by exploring certain domains – websites that are popular in your area – and see which of their posts gain the biggest traction. Alternatively, it can be done through keyword analysis.
With that in mind, you do need to think of the industry you are in. Let’s take, for example, a restaurant business. You will have little to no use of exploring popular content unless it has something to do with your niche.
Content idea: being a restaurant, you are all about food. Posts about food are quite popular both globally and locally, no matter how big the surroundings. The best thing is that food is an inexhaustible source of ideas. For instance, you can write about nutrition in general, recipes, specific diets, food that is popular among famous people, food free of common allergens, high and low calories food, and many others.
Once again we look back at the very definition of content marketing, and here is where the statement that “Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content…” comes into play. With all the ideas you’ve gathered through comprehensive research, it is time to create a long term strategy.
The integral part of every content strategy is a content calendar. We cannot give you a precise win-win recipe for forming one, because it depends on how much time you have to invest in your work and the size of your team. Forming the content calendar is basically situational and calls for compromise, but having one is of utmost importance!
Last but not the least, promoting your published content is a matter of high priority. We cannot emphasize enough the impact this has on the traffic you will receive on your posts. Think of it like this: what good will a piece of excellent content do for you if it stays in the dark?
Utilizing social media is a great start. Social media can be used not only for sharing, but also as an efficient advertising method. Creating PPC (Pay Per Click) campaigns on Facebook and Google will have wide reach, as well as Twitter promoted posts. Depending on the size of the audience you are aiming at, PPC campaigns can bring in thousands of visits your way.
Likewise well written and interesting posts help bring in quality backlinks from both natural resources and link building efforts. It is much easier to link back to a story that holds value than to a sales or promotional page.
Though most content marketers already knew the fact that content marketing works and brings in real results, it is hard explaining it to the client. Presenting someone with a proper content marketing strategy that takes long time to realize can be a hard sell, as most people want instant solutions – here and now. With the scientific confirmation of the content marketing method, it will be easier to approach the client with a long term campaign and back your story up with independent empirical evidence. In the end, how many articles you cite start with: ”Scientists state that…”