January 1, 2015
Ever since traditional forms of advertising have taken a backseat, businesses of all sizes are relying solely on digital marketing strategies to pull in revenue and create impact. While more than 91% B2B & 86% B2B marketers are using content marketing as the most important part of their digital strategy to garner organic visibility, traffic, and revenue; creating a solid content marketing plan has become the eccentricity of doing business online. According to the statistics collected from Kapost, website conversion rate is 6 times higher for those who’ve adopted content marketing strategy than those who haven’t & there is a whopping 75% increase in marketing qualified leads through content only.
Hence it is imperative for businesses of every size to consider implementing a winning Content Marketing strategy as a major part of Conversion Rate Optimization. Keeping in mind the new Panda update 4.1 & Google’s guidelines, I decided to highlight 13 content marketing strategies that you should consider if you’re looking to boost your website conversion rates. Wherever possible, I’ve included real-time examples to make you understand better.
- Quality Matters – Panda loves “High quality Pages” and sweeps off “Low Quality” content from Google
Creating high quality content should be on the top of your list because that’s the only thing that you can do to hook viewers and please Google at the same time. By producing quality content, you’re expected to come up with something absolutely unique, valuable and interesting. To rank amongst the High quality pages and get rewarded by Google with a lots of organic traffic, hire domain specific experts to get fresh content for your website and focus on consistently posting relevant stuff that sparks interest amongst the potential customers.
- Don’t repeat the same marketing music again & again – Uniqueness is important
Do you know that an average customer is bombarded with hundreds of marketing pitches right from the start of the day till dawn? Nobody wants to hear the same marketing music again and again. You have to do something unique to “stand apart” and spark interest in your content while gradually monetizing without sounding like advertising.
- Understand the difference between “Educating” and “Selling” – Mix it the right way
Often, business owners are completely ignorant of the fact that there’s a huge between creating content that educates readers & selling (advertising) content that sells to customers. So, they end up mixing both in a wrong way which affects the overall content strategy and fails to serve any of the purposes.
A good example to explain the difference between both the types of content is – Let’s say you are an ecommerce business(XYZ online store) and you want to focus on writing content that strikes a chord with visitors in a way that it hits them emotionally and logically by being interesting & relevant. So, if you’re planning a blog, you can write something like how to choose a perfect outfit for a glamorous office party and within the content, you can include some links of semi-formal dresses your online store sells by keeping a short message like – XYZ store has an amazing collection for such parties & presenting it as if it is syncing with the content and not necessarily stuffed by you to advertise your product.
- Create a business centric strategy to wisely select the type of content that can attract customers
Selecting the content wisely can be a daunting task but it is the most important thing to consider if you’re looking to attract customers through content marketing and improve your sales funnel. Always choose trending topics concerning your industry that are relevant enough to bring value to the target audience & in turn your business. Here are some quick tactics to emerge successful.
- Research the type of content that your competitors are posting and analyze the engagement ratio. Then, formulate your own plan by comparing SEO metrics like DA, PA, external links etc.
- Do thorough Keyword research by including relevant search terms that can bring traffic relevant to the business domain you’re in. Also, observe the landing pages for the keywords you select, see the metrics and figure out what is likely to work out for you.
- Seek customer feedback through online surveys from both B2B and B2C clients.
- Strategise a plan to publish a wide range of content types in distinct forms
You should plan your content strategy & implement it in such a way that it turns out to be successful in covering a wide range of different content types and in different forms.
Here, I’m describing the 6 popular types of web content that you can create to fulfil all your online marketing needs while boosting conversions as well.
Content Type- 1 : Infographics – When we present data in a visually appealing form along with the text, the end result is an infographic – a powerful medium to present information and get eyeballs on your content. To have one, you can either ask a professional graphic designer to make it for you or you can also use some free or premium tools or services like Piktochart, Visual.ly, Infogr.am and easel.ly etc.
Content Type – 2 : Meme
Meme is a witty yet humorous piece of information that speaks your brand message in a logical way using a tagline written on the top/bottom of an image. Memes are most popular on social media. To create one, you can use websites like Meme Generator and Quick Meme. Here is an example of a meme.
Content Type – 3 : Videos
Getting a beautifully animated short video (~2-3 minutes) that spreads awareness about your products/ services or simply “take a tour” type is a great way to communicate your message to your audience and persuade them to take actions. You can also share your video on Youtube and Vimeo.
Content Type – 4 : Case Study – A case study guides customers as to how your product or service has helped your previous clients who’re associated with you. This makes your future customers understand your worth. To write a case study, you need to start with an overview of your client, explain briefly the challenges your client business was facing and how your service/product turned out to be helpful in overcoming those problems. In the end, you can provide a conclusion and a call to action.
Content Type – 5 : Blogs – Blogs as you already know are a great way to express and voice your own opinions on the web and earn a lot of high quality traffic. Read this blog post on top 10 strategies for increasing visitors time on blog to get slight idea on writing an effective blog. You can use WordPress – one of the best content publishing frameworks to set up a blog for your business.
Content Type – 6 : Press releases/News
Releasing press releases from time to time about the latest contracts you’ve signed up, or news about any latest activity or mergers etc is a great way to keep your customers informed about what’s happening in your business & popularise yourself in the process. While writing a press release, be very specific and stick only to providing content in the form of news.
- Conduct a Market Research – Identify problems and solve them through your content
Though it all boils down to gain actionable industry insights, you shouldn’t just stop there itself. There’s no use to create endless content and perceive that it will bring you business online. You have to voice your opinions and earn a position of authority within your industry if you want to monetize your content. Try to identify which problems are concerning customers in the industry you’re in and how you can solve these problems with your content.
A good example is – let’s say you run an ecommerce business that sells fashion dresses worldwide. Answering questions like – How to choose an outfit that makes you look like in your 20s via putting forth a blog with good content that discusses meaningful stuff, I’m sure you’re going to attract a lot of fan following who’ll be delighted to purchase from your online store.
- Tap right channels to push your content on social media
Yes, even the most popular businesses put-in efforts to get their content right in front of their readers. But when it comes to distributing and sharing content on social media, reaching out to people through a right social channel is very important. However, this involves doing a lot of research and gaining enough industry insights while also considering the limits of each channel. If you have a wide customer base, select multiple social media channels to promote your content. In case you’re considering paid advertising campaigns, you have to be very specific about what you want to do and what channel will bring the maximum returns on your investment.
- Formulate strict editorial guidelines
Creating strict editorial guidelines around your content in terms of grammatical rules, tone, style, topic and pitching messages is extremely important if you want to please search engines. The new Panda 4.1 algorithm update by Google will take this into account while weeding out poor quality content from the search results.
- Spark two-way conversations
Just like you’re reaching out to the audience with your content, your target niche should also be keen to interact with you. In other words, you need to carve out a viable content strategy in such a way that it sparks two-way conversations. The content that you publish should be shareable, capable of triggering discussions, encourage your customers to comment and must add value to both your target audience as well as search engines.
- Create a distinct content strategy for each social channel
Planning a separate content strategy for each social channel will pull you out of the risk of losing out conversions. How? Well, this is because each social media platform may it be Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn or Pinterest has unique characteristics, posting rules and targets different demography in a different way. You can’t just post photographs of your jewellery business on Linkedin or tweet a “How to select jewellery for wedding” on Twitter. Understanding the need to create and implement a distinct content strategy for each channel is as important as it is to promote content on social media.
- SEO for Content Marketing – Optimize your content for search engines.
It is very important to ensure that the content you’re going to publish is search engine optimized before going live. To please search engines, you should not stuff too many keywords in your content. Also, present your content in a manner that it is effortlessly readable by crawlers and bots. For inbound traffic, link previous posts that are relevant to the topic and position your content at the right place. Try not to clutter or stuff everything over the whole webpage.
- Improve Engagement – Make your customers an important part of the your brand conversation
Allowing customers to post comments, share valuable insights and vote for interesting news or stories about your brand will improve engagement to a great extent. Leverage the craze of people being connected all the time & cash their habit to your benefits. The more likes, shares or comments you get through your content, the more it is likely to pull-in big bucks for you. Make sure your messages revolve and affect a big chunk of people everytime you publish your content. Also, acknowledge the comments that you receive by replying and appreciating with a short “thankyou” message.
- Track success via regular Content Audits and evolve your strategy to make your content easily consumable.
Performing a content audit on your website to monitor your efforts is very important after you implement different strategies to create and promote your content. This is because while posting tonnes of content, you often don’t realize that traffic is bouncing back off your website. Schedule a content audit weekly, quarterly or at least monthly to know whether your campaign is succeeding in grabbing readers’ attention and earning you profits by converting into leads. It is very important to know whether the content you’re posting is consumable enough to keep people hooked and engaged. Based on the statistics, evolve your strategy and improve your content marketing model as per your growing needs.
Here are some pointers that you should keep in mind while performing a content audit
- Analytics Metrics : Evaluate everything from bounce rate to average time spent on the overall site and individual webpages. Also track pageviews, pages per visit, engagement and the time and frequency of visits to identify new opportunities
- SEO Metrics : Analyze where you stack up when it comes it Page Authority, Page Ranking and linking root domains
- Sales : Calculate the degree upto which you were able to monetize on your content and actually convert the potential traffic into leads and leads to customers
- Loyalty : See if your customers are coming back and your content is retaining your clients or awakening the previous customer base to make a purchase.
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