Content marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) are the titans of modern marketing. Oddly enough, they aren’t in the same conversation as often as they should be.
And when they are, digital marketers seem to adopt an adversarial mentality and headline their articles with SEO vs. Content Marketing. The Guardian was one of the news coverage sites that described how Google had tired of its “old friend SEO,” and was “making friends” with content marketing instead, describing it as the new kid in town.Smart digital marketers know that this isn’t how it works, though. While all channels have their special roles to play, the best strategies are those that integrate different digital marketing channels to achieve the same goal.
Content marketing and SEO are a lot like that.
Alkries LLC employs a two-pronged approach to building your online presence. Our digital marketing services incorporate SEO and content marketing into your strategy. But we’re not just talking about optimizing content with the right keywords, meta information, or technical SEO.We help you craft powerful content that search engines and your target audience will love.
SEO and Content Marketing Go Hand in Hand
Content marketing has been around longer than the Internet because it’s all about storytelling — and humans have been telling stories for as long as they could speak. National Geographic has been using the storytelling power of content marketing to engage over 350 million followers on social media. Compelling and useful content like this should be at the core of your marketing strategy.
The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as the creation and distribution of valuable and relevant content. Its ultimate goal is to drive profitable customer action.
On the other hand, Search Engine Land defines SEO as the process of obtaining traffic organic, natural, and free search engine results. SEO can help your business by influencing customer purchasing decisions and boosting awareness for your brand.Content marketing and SEO are often treated as separate entities. But bringing them together holds the key to your digital marketing success. The successful way to apply SEO is to channel specific technical endeavors into content marketing, for instance, and ensuring the success of your content marketing strategy lies in applying SEO techniques during implementation.
Here are other ways why it makes sense to marry your SEO and content marketing strategy:
- SEO demands content. “Content is king” is the truism of the SEO industry. And it isn’t just any type of content — convey a story that solicits emotion or engagement. Delivering this content can come in different forms: text, images, audio or video.
- Keywords are crucial. Content marketing entails creating content with strategically placed keywords. As a content marketer, SEO success depends on properly conducting research, using keywords judiciously, and tracking their ranking on search engine result pages (SERPs).
- Backlink building. Getting a linkback to an authority site translates to successful SEO. To get a website with high trust and domain authority like Google My Business, LinkedIn, or Pinterest linking back to your content would be ideal. But the only way you can achieve this is by publishing killer content that reputable websites would link back to.
- Fresh content. Fresh content gets a rapid index and registers higher in SERPs than low-value content. Producing consistent, fresh content is bound to give your site a SERP boost. Do this consistently, and you’ll get results with your content marketing campaigns.
We Recommend: you bring content marketing and SEO together in your marketing campaign. On their own, they are impotent. But hand-in-hand, the two strategies are like dynamite.
High-Quality Content Ranks Higher on Searches
After Google’s Hummingbird update, marketers are revisiting a crucial question: what defines high-quality content?
Panda and Penguin have emphasized content as a crucial element to ranking well on search engines. From what we’ve discovered, marketers should avoid using tricks to improve search engine rankings. Instead, the focus should be on making your website content unique, valuable, and engaging.Some people are wondering why Google is moving in this direction and making a fuss out of producing high-quality content. The search engine is in the business of answering user queries, and it wants to do this as intuitively as possible — even integrating it with the technology people use.
Your Goal: provide users with an interactive experience, where they receive instant results to their queries. One day, you might not even be typing queries into a search bar because you’ll be talking to your device instead. As a marketer, it is your job to keep up as technology changes and provide your customers with enjoyable and useful content.
Google doesn’t want frustrating answers or pages that waste a user’s time; it wants to enrich the customer experience. Producing high-quality content, therefore, is your best tactic for showing up on the top of SERPs.
But what’s the catch, though?
- 1Quality is subjective. Quality can be short or long, funny or serious. Define “quality” content and how it relates to your brand.
- 2Quality requires trust. Don’t just build quality; put energy into establishing trust, too. Google rewards anything authoritative and shareable online because it is a sign of high-quality content.
- 3Quality content isn’t sales-driven. Try to write non promotional content and appeal to your audience with useful, readable content that addresses their pain points.
- 4Quality comes with a bigger investment. A bigger budget means you can get better writers and graphics on board and use programming to create interactive content.
Creating Search Engine and User-friendly Content
Successful, high-quality content is the equivalent of a best-selling novel that your readers just can’t get enough of. Below, we’ve compiled some tips to help you craft high-quality content and turn it into the ultimate read.
Create original and standout content.
Sometimes, content marketers set out to write for SEO without a clearly defined strategy. They often lose sight of the importance of offering value to their readers. Rise above the noise and produce standout, creative content. Offer something unique that they can’t find anywhere else.
Write for your niche audience persona.
Without an audience persona, you can only guess what readers want. When this happens, you are more likely to craft content about what you know best, rather than the information your audience is looking for. Envision your ideal customer and consider their interests, motivations, and needs. From there, you can more easily craft content that meets these preferences.
Find your writing style.
Cultivating a sense of style for your marketing helps you earn trust from your customers. The right style crosses the writer and receiver divide, leaving out room for misinterpretation. The appropriate writing style makes it easier to communicate your message in a way your audience would be receptive to.
Highlight your unique selling proposition.
Nobody knows your business the way you do, so you need to use this knowledge to your SEO advantage. Appeal to your target audience by emphasizing your content differentiation factor and incorporating it into your content. Brainstorm, write about niche topics, and make sure you keep it interesting and relevant to your readers.
Keep your content readable and straightforward.
Regardless of how educated your audience is, they wouldn’t want to read an article that is too difficult to understand. Your goal is to get your readers to read and share your posts with their followers. Keep your articles readable by using clear, simple language.
Follow keyword density guidelines.
Use keywords appropriately and strategically. SEO and content should work in balance, so avoid stuffing a page with keywords. Follow keyword density guidelines to determine if you have the right amount of keywords on your page. Since Google suggests writing natural articles, it is best practice to stay within the 1-3 percent limit of keyword density.
Include LSI keywords in your content.
Latent semantic indexing (LSI) keywords are semantically linked to your main keyword. Using words similar to your search term on your website can add context to your work, helping Google and other search engines make sense of what your content and brand is all about.
Make use of keyword research tools.
Enrich your web content and ad copy with targeted keywords to increase your web presence. Keyword research tools, like SEMrush, receive trending data for your entered keyword and access organic and paid search volumes. Use the data you’ve collected to determine the value of each keyword and single out the best ones you can use for your content.
Treat content and design independently.
Some marketers still follow traditional web design principles by controlling the design and layout of their content. But appealing to your target audience depends on moving beyond page formats and organizing your content into easily digestible and structured data. Model your content into a data-clear format and leave the design to your customers.
Write comprehensive and informative content.
More than relying on technically perfect SEO, using value-packed, powerful content makes a huge difference. Always back your claims with proof by including statistics, studies, research, and expert insights. And instead of skimming the surface, go down the rabbit hole and dig deeper into your topic. So write with a unique angle and conduct intensive research to take your readers on an unforgettable content journey.
Setting Up an SEO-powered Content Marketing Strategy
Even with all the basics down for good SEO writing, you can’t create content and just expect to see results.For profitable traffic and high-quality inbound leads to stream in, you’ll need to strategize your content around solid SEO. With an SEO-geared content strategy, you can provide useful information to your readers, rank for high-ROI keywords and hit those coveted search rankings.
Here’s how you can build your SEO content marketing strategy:
- Create mind maps and visual representations - Building your strategy starts with creating a mind map that helps you envision your thinking process; visualize everything at once while working in a nonlinear fashion. You can start creating goals and assigning specific tasks as your mind map becomes more concrete.
- Know your company branding - Making your SEO strategy successful depends on understanding your company identity. Develop your unique selling proposition and vision statements. Both of these can guide you in setting actionable goals and metrics.
- Set your goals - Start at the end. Ask yourself what you’re trying to accomplish: are you trying to increase leads, drive an increase in sales, or get customers to subscribe to a newsletter? Document these goals to figure out what type of content to create and what your calls-to-action should be.
- Understand your target audience’s pain points - Collaborate with your customer service, sales, product marketing, and social media marketing departments to learn more about your target audience and what they’re struggling with. Browse searching forums, social media, Quora, and Reddit to find out what their pain points are.
- Optimize your content intelligently - Research keyword opportunities that point to specific topics close to your reader’s heart. Optimize your content intelligently by including keywords in meta tags and descriptions, creating relevant, research-intensive content, and sticking to a consistent content publishing schedule.
- Measure campaign success - Several factors demonstrate whether or not your campaign is working the way you want it to. A rise in key metrics, such as keyword rankings, inbound links, organic traffic, referral traffic, conversions, and revenue is a good sign. With a reasonable, dedicated budget, you could start to see results within the first year of your campaign.
Conquering the SERPs requires more than just mastering the technicalities of SEO. It also depends on creating value-packed, persuasive content that delivers what it promises. The trick to writing compelling content lies in writing with a unique angle for your audience, exploring relevant niche areas, and deep-diving into your content research process to take your readers on an unforgettable ride.
By fusing content marketing and SEO into your digital marketing campaign, you’ll receive mind-blowing results. At Alkries LLC, that’s what we do best.
We are a seasoned digital marketing agency that will help you devise a data-driven strategy to increase website traffic, capture more leads, and build lasting relationships with customers.Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.