A large part of your marketing strategy in 2014 is going to be based around the content on your website, e-mail marketing campaigns, social media posts, and advertising. Search Engines (aka Google) determine the relevancy and quality of a website based on its content and therefore you are going to spend massive amounts of time coming up with an editorial calendar outlining everything you want to discuss for an entire year (and then some.) Of course, news stories, trends and new technology will deter you away from your scheduled calendar, but only for the better. You must stay up to date.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to continuously write new content, whether it is on a blog, your website, or through your social media outlets. Writing new content can be stressful and if you are a small business with minimal outsourcing, employees or “help” then you have probably suffered from writer’s block on more than one occasion.
I’m here to bring you a few tips and tools that will help you write new, fresh and relevant content for your blog, website or social media postings:
Content Writing Tips
1. Plan your strategy. You should have a long term goal, medium term goal and short term goal. Your long term goal is your overall business marketing goal, your medium term goals might be for the month or next few months leading up to an event (or holiday, time of year, etc) and your short term goals could be single-event, daily or weekly goals. With these goals written down, you will always have something to turn to.
2. Do an overall keyword research based around your goals. Once you know your goals, you should conduct extensive keyword research around these goals, your business and your industry/market. With these keywords and phrases written down and in your face, it will help give you an idea of what you should be writing about.
3. Headlines grab readers. It’s true. Learn how to write good headlines because otherwise you could have amazing content that no one reads. Think about the headlines that attract your attention. What do they all have in common? They don’t give away the whole story, but they do grab you in.
4. Read your competition. Not sure what to write? Take a look at what your competition is up to. What keywords are they using, what topics are they covering and who are they linking to? Don’t copy them, but use this as a jumping point. Read what they wrote…do you still have questions? Then write something that will answer that question. Write something you would want to read if you were your own customer/reader.
Content Writing Tools
1. Market Samurai for keyword research. They offer a free trial so you can test it out. If you aren’t happy with paying for a service like this, you can still utilize Google’s Keyword Planner.
2. Yoast as an SEO plugin tool. Essentially you are trying to optimize your website for search…in other words, search engine optimization. Yoast is a WordPress plugin that you can use for your WordPress website or blog. It will tell you whether you are being consistent with your keywords in the right places and whether you are helping or hurting yourself with search rankings.
3. Google Alerts can keep you up to date on news and other content on the Internet based on the keywords you set it up with. You can get instant, daily or weekly e-mail lists of articles, blog posts or news that contain those keywords. This can keep you up to date and keep your juices flowing for new content.
4. The Advanced Guide to Content Writing is one of the ultimate content writing guides. You should read it now.
What other tips or tools do you have for marketers and businesses who have a website and need to incorporate a content strategy into their marketing plan?