why content marketing is essential for SEO and your overall digital marketing

6 Answers on Content Marketing and SEO

why content marketing is essential for SEO and your overall digital marketingGoogle users will examine only the first three pages of search results, if they even get past the first page. How does one particular business rise to the top?

Be aware of how content marketing and SEO play together.

Top Search Engine Optimization (SEO) advice of just a few months ago is obsolete now. In fact, Google’s algorithms for searches change continuously. Google is now prioritizing sites that have quality content and, updated information. Moreover, most search engine users are looking for an immediate answer or solution, not a phone number or a list of services. Consumers want useful information. Businesses with an effective content marketing strategy will rise in their SEO rank as a result.

The following six questions are important when developing a business’s SEO strategy:

1. What do consumers want when they search the web?

In the majority of searches, people are looking for information, not products and services. Typically a person has a question, problem, issue, or concern, and they turn to the internet for answers or solutions. The best Digital marketing taps into this insatiable need for information. The question is: how does a business contribute to people’s lives in a meaningful way? How does a business solve people’s problems?

Fortunately, a business owner does not have to stumble around trying to figure out what people are asking about and looking for. A SEO professional can help a business determine the top keyword searches and produce a list of topics that will successfully generate traffic for their business website. Once a business has determined a list of topics suitable for their business niche, then they need to consider how they will develop these topics into consumable information.

2. What is Google looking for when determining search results?

Google now penalizes sites that use keywords excessively to raise their rankings; in other words, keyword stuffing. Again, they prioritize sites that have the best and freshest information. This means that businesses that update their site at least weekly will probably do better in search engine rankings than sites that are updated monthly.

3. How should a business integrate content marketing?

A website of less than 25 pages is going to sink to the bottom in the current content-hungry reality of the internet. If a business is going to have any success with SEO, they will need to determine how they are going to consistently load relevant information to their website.

Most businesses find that adding a blog to their website is the best solution. Blogs are easy to update, but well-constructed posts can have a long shelf life. Thus, a business gets a two-for-one deal with each blog post. Engaging and interesting content can keep current clients and customers coming back for more information, and the same content can snag new customers or clients as blog archives continue to grow.

Social media can be harnessed to draw this traffic. A well-constructed blog post with quality images and info-graphics can be pinned to Pinterest, tweeted on Twitter, posted on Facebook, pictured on Instagram, and posted on LinkedIn. Thus, rather than pushing a product or service, a business can contribute in a meaningful way to current conversations. This strategy results in more traffic and ultimately in more business.

4. How does a business produce fresh content on a regular basis?

Whether a business handles writing in-house, hires a freelance writer, or engages a digital marketing firm, its website must effectively tackle the real problems of visitors. Otherwise the digital marketing strategy will be ineffective. Again one post published per month, will largely fail to make a dent in a business niche. Regular posts, once to three times per week, will be the most effective in beginning to address the myriad questions posed by search engine users.

5. How can a business tap into quality content?

We said it.  Google wants fresh, quality content. If content on a website is written in ways too similar to the content on another website, the websites will fall in search engine rankings. This presents a huge problem for highly-specialized and technical topics. In other words, there may be hundreds of blog posts addressing the same topic. How will one post stand out? Quality is the answer. A business must strive to be original, thorough, and up-to-date, truly useful from the reader standpoint. At the same time, their posts must be engaging and easy to digest. If a business is unable to produce top quality writing and images in-house, then they will need to outsource this work.

6. How can a business diversify content?

To keep people coming back, a business website should go beyond written pieces. Infographics, videos, and images will do very well on social media and will drive traffic to a business website.

Also, some blog posts remain popular over a long period of time if they address longstanding questions. However, just as a business constantly grows and develops, their content marketing should grow as well. In the second year of a digital marketing strategy, key content posts can sometimes be repurposed to generate new traffic. Also, obsolete information should be purged on a regular basis, so that a company maintains credibility.

On the other hand, a hot, very current topic can generate a lot of traffic to a website, so businesses should keep their eyes open for issues that may become popular in the media. In other words, a business should strive to stay relevant.

In Conclusion

People want helpful information fast. Google’s mission is to make sure that they get it. Sales pitches and promotions of goods and services will fall flat unless people feel that these goods and services will meet their needs and solve their problems. Business websites that offer fresh, relevant, and quality information will be the most successful in SEO.

 

digital marketing agencies

Digital Marketing Usefulness: it is different than what you’d think

A changing Scenario in Digital Marketing

Advertising has always been the tool most often used to attract the attention and sell to our audience. Businesses pay to compete for the attention of their customers. Examples of media utilized to broadcast their message include newspaper, television and digital media. The underlying point they are trying to convey is: “Hey, look how good we are! We are your best choice!”

However, consumers have become tired of this approach and are escaping these types of messages. The modern day digital environment empowers customers by providing access to a huge number of information sources to learn about a company’s reputation or product before making a purchasing decision. For an example, consumers have been doing what we call “show-rooming”, which means they stand at retail stores staring at their smart-phone reading reviews of their next gadget before they buy it.

Our customers have developed higher expectations and are becoming less and less inclined to blindly trust brands. This is particularly true when brands are no more creative than simply promoting themselves. Why would customers care and why would they believe?

Instead, your company should attract its audience by providing usefulness from the very earliest stages of the relationship, which is often far in advance of your customers paying you money.

Examples of usefulness.

Hilton, the famous hotel chain, uses a Twitter account under the name, Hilton Suggests. The people who manage the account, “listen” to Twitter users across the globe, and provide suggestions on travel related requests. They solve the traveller problem often suggesting a visit to a restaurant or hotel that does not belong to Hilton. Their purpose is simply to be helpful.

Another example is Clorox. This brand  sells laundry cleaning products. Before they start selling, however, they make themselves useful to their audience with solid information on how to get rid of  clothes stains. Their advice will not necessarily involve the use of any of their products. Often it does not. They just want to help and they don’t want money for this.
These are ways to provide genuine usefulness. People who benefit of this kind of help, develop a new bond with the brand and will try their best to choose it for their next trip, or their next stain.

Companies have a choice.

  1. They can use money and resources buying old interruptive ads on paid media that people reject
  2. Or they can provide genuine usefulness to the people they want to attract. This is marketing people find useful and want more to see of the same.
It seems a no-brainer, but there are companies who are choosing to stay with the old paradigm. Why is this?
  • It’s simply the easier route. Understanding how scenarios change is difficult and takes time and effort.
  • Traditional consulting media agencies make money when they drive their clients towards traditional paid media.

There are  consequences to your choice.

  • With traditional paid media you lose opportunities to measure. Who (and how many) read your messages? Where are they? These are questions that remain unanswered.
  • You audience will filter you out. You are competing for their attention not only with your competitors but with their friends. (Think of your Facebook stream).
  • You do not accrue value. After the ad is published its outcome is uncertain and will most likely be lost and soon forgotten. It’s not found in search engines or in any other way. You can only decide to pay again.
Instead, when companies choose to provide usefulness, they achieve meaningful beneficial outcomes such as:
  • The work and the content developed on and for the digital media  accrues and becomes a long term tangible asset. Everything that is on digital media is found for years by search engines.
  • The connection with customers happens at their level in a context they find friendly and useful;
  • Marketing efforts are measured with laser-like precision; so are the outcomes;
  • The company creates bonds, trust and goodwill among the people they want to attract.

Providing Usefulness.

This is a set of activities that will typically happen at the top of the funnel (TO FU): we are attracting attention among the audience of our customers.
These activities will often be related to content production, but do not have to be digital. Digital has become an essential channel to develop relationships with customers. But this is not the point.
The core message we want to convey is that we want to approach our audiences from another angle: we want to make ourselves useful with no precondition. This is our investment.

A roadmap.

Please read the slides from n. 29 in the presentation. You will find a roadmap on how to execute useful marketing you customers want. Below is a short summary:
  1. Define who your customers are and what they need;
  2. Map your marketing to their needs: how do they best obtain access to what you can deliver;
  3. Market your usefulness: inform people about your brilliant initiatives;
  4. Design and plan operations. Make it a process;
  5. Measure efforts and outcomes.

To be involved in our initiatives do subscribe to Evonues. And if you want to know how your company can grow its revenue providing usefulness, contact us.

digital marketing services

Leadership changes as technologies change organizations.

During the last week-end we completed an exciting Residential Seminar with 96 MBA students of the University of Mauritius.

This event, and the hard work we put into it, has been valuable in many ways.  This is not a particularly new kind of project ( here are some of our past things – in Italian); however the context and the people were new. And while I am quite inclined to work in changing contexts, cultures, and always different people, this time has been different.  Working together with the Team at the University of Mauritius, has been invaluable. Intense conversation and a strong shared focus on delivering a great experience, made our celebration at the end even more rewarding.  I  am grateful for the opportunity I’ve had to get involved with this group of academics and professionals.

Working with the MBA students, the leaders of the future in Mauritius, and the World,  has been extremely enriching. They are fast, open minded, pragmatic, sensitive, and driven by values.  Working with them has been an energising experience. And we had fun too.

As to the programme, the one thing I would choose to mention here, is related to new forms of leadership. Technologies are reshaping our lives,  the way businesses are run, and how organizations work.

As people are working together in new ways, across time and space, and in an ever changing,  always more competitive environment, a demand for new forms of leadership is emerging strong. Companies need employees who are passionate, and have entrepreneurial initiative.

Intelligence, diligence, obedience in employees have become commodities long ago, and won’t make any company particularly competitive. So there is a need for leaders who engage and develop the passion and  initiative companies are crying out for.

These leaders have some common traits.

  • they are willing to engage with other people in the organization;
  • they want to learn and change;
  • they are able to unlock positive emotions;
  • they can bring out the best of people and situations;
  • they know how to engage people in co-designing the (organizational) future;
  • they provide inspiration, confidence and hope for the future;

And the MBA students we met at the seminar are asking for this leadership, and are ready to express it themselves.

 

Facebook algorithm changing

The latest from Facebook

Facebook algorithm changingFacebook algorithm changes, and these news are not going to please everyone. It seems useful to look at these changes, and provide recommendations for Facebook Pages Owners.

Facebook has tweaked its algorithm in an attempt to improve its users’ experience. These tweaks are changing the probability that your content is displayed in the users’ newsfeed.

Facebook is showing your content, depending on the source of the content itself, and how valuable it is considered for users. In this picture, the so called “viral content” (think photos with nice looking, funny cats)  will be less likely to be shown. Here is what Lars Backstrom, Facebook Newsfeed Manager had to say

We don’t really think about it that much in terms of promoting and demoting certain kinds of content. The way we think about it is that we’re doing a better job of identifying value.

And:

It’s not us trying to be more proscriptive. We’re trying to align our definition of value with that of our users.

From a user standpoint all this is good.  Think of how many pages you “like” and how many Facebook friends you have. Each of them, pages and friends, are posting content. How are you going to manage to read it all. You should spend your whole day in front of Facebook. Do you spend there all of your time?

So many of the businesses that use Facebook pages to promote their businesses will be affected. Some brand pages have been experimenting a significant decline in the number of people who see their posts.

Facebook wasn’t built for businesses to post free ads, (that’s what  Facebook page are). It is designed to attract a huge number of users, make their experience as good as it can be. A huge number of visitors are vital for Facebook to execute its business model and make money for itself.

This evolution in Facebook is comparable to previous Google algorithm updates (Panda among others); these aimed to provide an increasingly better user experience, and support Google’s own business model. You ,as a business owner who uses Facebook brand pages, are not a priority in this picture.

So here a few simple recommendation for those of you who have been using Facebook pages.

1. make sure you have and take care of your own digital real estate. This is your website and/or your blog.  These are assets you can control and should be the pillar of your digital presence. You can’t control social media spaces that do not belong to you; they will change and you won’t be asked what you think. You can only try to be as quick as possibile in understanding these changes, and adapting to them. So we get to the following point.

2. understand how Facebook, (in this case), evolves as you pursue your business goals. As things are now, if you want to get your content in front of Facebook users you should:

    1. post authoritative and high quality content coming from reputable sources;
    2. post often;
    3. buy ads or “boost your posts” (another way to pay for Facebook space). This is what Facebook wants you to do most.

And you, how are you making the best of your business presence on Facebook?

Let’s get to work. Together.

Please make yourself comfortable; we start our blog.

But first we would like to say a few things about ourselves.

Evonue Digital is the continuation of the business activities that we have successfully carried out in Italy and Europe for the last 20 years. We have been working with global companies, and smaller local businesses, headquartered in various places in Italy and Europe.

I (Mario) have been dreaming the new Evonue Digital in Mauritius, and now we have it. You can read more about me on LinkedIn, and here you can see some pictures, and some of our past and current clients. Read more