Let’s face it – we became content creating machines. Every day, we’re uploading huge amounts of information, saturating the web, hoping our message will provoke engagement. Some people believe that we’re generating too much content, which might sound true, but it’s not really the main issue. The pure numbers are not the problem, but the lack of thought or skill put into the creation of our content just might be. With quantity over quality, there has to be an enormous amount of noise every step of the way. Luckily, ranking algorithms are consistently getting more intelligent, and hopefully, so will our content.
On our journey to produce meaningful and useful content in order to promote our business we are faced with many different hurdles and obstacles. The higher the focus on quality the more complex and more difficult does the process of content Marketing become. It’s not really the simple matter of working hard or “getting what you paid for”, there’s also a huge element of working smart.
You might think it’s intuitive that content marketing efforts need to have a goal and a good idea about how to reach it, but you’d be surprised how many people and companies are just spewing out articles, blogs, interviews, videos and podcasts without looking at the greater picture and not taking into account the basic, yet simple principles of a content marketing strategy. Planning is essential, strategizing necessary and throughout the ride, there is a staggering amount of tools and resources that can be utilized in order to get the most out of your content marketing endeavors. We’ve organized them by different aspects of the process, even though some might be useful in more areas than one.
It doesn’t matter if you’re running a whole team, or you’re fighting the good fight all by yourself, the number one way of increasing productivity has to be improved planning and organization of the work that needs to be done. In terms of content marketing, your foundation needs to be centered around your content marketing calendar, which contains all the relevant information regarding your strategy, processes, and execution. The tools you’ll be using in this area don’t have to be revolutionary, state of the art, intelligent solutions. The most important thing is that you’re comfortable with the ones you’ve chosen and that they satisfy the basic requirements for big-picture clarity and if necessary, collaboration. If you’re willing to put in the work, you can do wonders with going as simple as Google Docs, Sheets or even common project management tools like Trello. And, if you’re looking for a quick fix solution, you can always browse through content calendar templates.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
In the introduction, we’ve already touched on the importance of making quality content in order to improve your ranking and reach more people. That makes SEO a crucial aspect of your content Marketing Strategy, meaning all of your content needs to be prepared in such a way that is informative, useful, relevant, structured and co-responding with the queries people are typing into their search engines.
There are many different techniques you could be using, the most popular and also directly related to content production is, of course, keyword research. Once you’ve selected a topic you’d like to contribute to, it’s important to understand what questions people are asking specifically in order to provide them with the most relevant answers. Having said that, you can also reverse the process and form a topic based on your research. Using free tools such as Google Keyword Planner can give you a pretty good estimate in terms of what content will respond with your audience the most.
There are lots of free SEO tools and each of them is usually focused on doing one particular thing in a relatively limited fashion. In order to experience real boosts of productivity and new value, you’re probably going to need to invest in an intelligent online marketing suite, and two of the leading brands are SEMrush and Ahrefs. Aside from having their own advanced keyword planning tools, they offer a range of services including insight into the organic keyword ranking for both your own company and your competitors. Their unwearying analytics will make excellent contributions to your content marketing and even your overall marketing strategy.
An essential component of promoting your content involves quite a bit of social media management. But posting your articles and videos on say Twitter or Facebook, is in itself specific content, meaning it too has to follow certain guidelines and can benefit from careful research and studious preparation.
Each social media platform is its own ecosystem, yet there are software solutions that cover several of the most important ones. For instance, Keyhole offers detailed analytics for Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter and presents data about the most popular subjects that are being discussed at any moment. Using said data, you will gain insight that will, in turn, help you brainstorm creative ways of becoming a part of the conversation. Most of these social media tools offer some sort of scheduling support but more importantly, they will also provide you with statistical overviews of your campaign’s achievements as well.
A sometimes underestimated aspect of the content marketing process, emails have an amazing ROI and are a great opportunity to get personal with your audience. If you’re able to engage people who were already willing to share their private email with you, they’re as a rule further down the funnel than the audience you’re reaching otherwise. Hopefully, your mailing list will be so big that it requires automation and to that end, MailChimp offers a good scheduling service, optimization through segmentation, tagging, and A/B testing, all with a solid free plan that will surely cover you until things get really going.
Final Thoughts What is lying underneath the potential benefits of integrating these tools into your workflow is learning to calculate the time you and your team are spending on your content marketing efforts and perceive it as a resource. Once you’ve understood the full picture and the value of your time, you will be able to appreciate the amounts you will save by implementing some of the tools we’ve been discussing here. To sum everything up – quality over quantity, quality takes time, tools both save time and help you improve the quality.
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