Note: This is old content from GarrettMickley.com. I am no longer pursuing a digital marketing career, but I didn’t want the content to go to waste, so I’m relocating it here. I hope the Dev.to community finds it useful.
0. Table of Contents
1. Increase targeted traffic to your website by posting regular, optimized content focused on bringing value to the reader.
2. Content Marketing is all about using content to help people find you.
3. The point of content marketing is to bring people to awareness, hold awareness, and develop interest.
4. Your competitors are doing content marketing. If you are not, you can't compete.
5. There's more to content marketing than just blog posts.
6. Content marketing is right for your business.
Increase targeted traffic to your website by posting regular, optimized content focused on bringing value to the reader.
Web marketers have pretty much always lived by the rule "content is king," but that rings true more than ever today. As I wrote in this post, SEO is dying because writing regular content that is focused on providing value to the reader is going to automatically optimize your pages for search engines.
SEMRush found in 2017 that "having an exact match keyword in your on-page SEO elements is not crucial."
You don't need an SEO company. What you need is to know how to write content for marketing.
In fact, SEO only exists as a concept because of content. Content is king.
If your entire marketing funnel has various stages, they would be: Awareness, Interest, Desire, and Action. This is the AIDA model, which was created by E. St. Elmo Lewis in 1898. Perhaps unsurprisingly, people haven't changed all that much and this still works today.
- Awareness – the customer is aware of the existence of your brand.
- Interest – the customer is actively expressing an interest in your brand.
- Desire – the customer is aspiring to a particular product or service of your brand.
- Action – the customer is taking the next step towards purchasing the chosen product or service of your brand.
Content marketing exists before the AIDA model even starts, and then continues through both Awareness and Interest stages.
The point of content marketing is to bring people to awareness, hold awareness, and develop interest.
Content marketing has so many benefits that people are ignoring these days. First of all, it builds your brand. All of the content will speak through your brands voice, creating a consistent experience for all visitors.
All of the content written for your site is also content that can be shared through all of your social media channels, reminding people of your existence and directing them to your website, where they can develop interest and desire, and ultimately take action.
But most of all, content marketing builds a long term audience that will continue to follow you as long as you continue to provide value to their lives. This is a flywheel effect for the rest of your marketing plan.
Let's take a look at a client. This client hired me to write regular content for their website with the purpose of increasing brand awareness and traffic. All of my content aims to provide value to the reader first (through the content itself) and to the brand second (through a call to action at the end).
Each contract was three months long. I find that three months is how long it takes to see a difference, and six months is how long it takes to feel a difference.
Here you can see that content grows consistently over the nine months of posting regular content.
For the first three month contract, I focused on trial-and-error to get a feel for the industry and discover what value I could provide to website visitors. I posted daily content for five days out of the week, Monday through Friday.
For the second three month contract, I had figured out what content would bring in new customers, as well as bring the others back for repeat business. While the client was happy with the results by the end of this contract, I was not. I pitched a change of focus for the third three month contract.
In the third three month contract, I cut the content amount down from five posts per week, to three posts per week. This gave me the opportunity to focus more on providing valuable content without increasing the rate of the contract. As you can see, with content marketing the rule is "quality over quantity" and traffic began to grow even quicker.
The reason the content dips so drastically at the end is because this screenshot was taken at the beginning of June, so a full month's worth of traffic had not happened yet.
This client had no SEO plan and was not buying ads, nor creating any other content that directed visitors to their website. All content growth was through my efforts, as well as their word-of-mouth marketing to friends and family. They also periodically shared the content I wrote on social media.
Clearly, content marketing works great. That said, you would benefit even more from also seeking out professionals who can create other media content. Or learning to create it yourself.
The great thing about written content is that it can be repurposed elsewhere.
I recommend you connect with a professional who can take your written content and create video content for YouTube.
Another popular idea is to create a podcast based around the content you write, if it doesn’t require visuals.
Every business will benefit from content marketing, and the benefits are only exacerbated when working directly with other marketing campaigns.
"I always knew I wanted Garrett to write for my site, it was just a matter of finding the right project. Bringing a writer you hadn't worked with before onto your site is always a risk, so it's important to vet them and think about where their voice will fit on your site. Garrett was a consummate professional. He delivered his copy on time, it was well-written, accurate and polished, and he made any edits we asked for quickly and efficiently. It's always a pleasure to work with writers who listen to feedback and use it to produce a better product.
It helped us launch flagship content for our website that ended up being a success, in part because of Garrett's efforts. I really liked the research that Garrett did on the subjects we asked him to write about. Because he had done his homework, he was able to write with authority.
We got really good traffic on the pieces Garrett worked on, and the project ended up being a showcase for a redesign that was central to our overall plan for the site. I would definitely recommend Garrett's services. Garrett's ability to quickly understand and take ownership of an assignment means you get quality work without the hassle of having to check in constantly, or worse, deal with a blown deadline. Also a plus: Garrett is really skilled at promoting his work on social media and through careful search engine optimization.
I'd say that Garrett is a creative, experienced writer with a can-do attitude who will take a writing assignment from inception to completion with a minimum amount of hassle on your part. He's always willing to go the extra mile to make sure you get the copy you need." - Claes Bell, Bankrate.com