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As your online business grows, it becomes clear how important content marketing is to your business. And even if you're working on your company's strategy or hiring an agency to help, one thing is clear: you need to know the full list of content marketing services your business needs.
Before you say you don't have to worry because you are hiring a specialist digital agency to take care of all of this, here's how: Get a great deal for a freelancer or an agency to take care of everything what to do with content for you. That sounds appealing, but how can you hire them if you don't know what to deliver? Once you know what a complete list of content marketing services looks like, you can set expectations, measure the efforts of the company you hire, and better understand the results.
Here are the top content marketing services business owners should know about:
- Content Marketing Strategy
- Use keyword research tools
- Check out the top of mind keywords
- Look for Seed Keywords
- Prioritize the keywords that you want to rank for
- Choose top keywords
- Content creation
- Content distribution
- Link building
- Social media
- Community & Relationships
- Constant updating of the content
- Content analytics reporting
- Organic search traffic
- Keyword rankings
- Social shares
- Backlink volume
Content Marketing Strategy
A good content marketing strategy should answer the question why.
Why do you want to create content? For whom? Why is your content different from what you already have?
Content marketing strategy is more than a content strategy. The latter is more focused on content creation, which we will talk about later.
The first thing you need to do is clarify what you want to achieve with content marketing: More traffic? More leads? To inform customers? Increase online presence?
If you've been looking at the trends lately, you have articles on content marketing and how it changed the SEO game forever.
It seems that Google is determined to provide visitors with the most relevant content pages for their search, and the trend of creating high quality content that is more relevant to your target audience seems to be becoming more of a need than a game, that is only played from the website cool kids.
More and more SEO professionals are getting on this train and it is no longer to be believed that this is hype and an opportunity to reinvent so-called "dead SEO".
Once you have answered the why, you can move on to the next step within a content marketing strategy, keyword research. You don't want to write just to write, do you?
You want to create good content that will reach your audience. However, to do this you need to know what topics need to be covered and what keywords you can create content for. So check out the next few steps that lay the foundation for all other content marketing services.
Use keyword research tools
Finding keywords shouldn't be difficult, but it's no stroll in the park either. In the modern SEO landscape, a keyword research tool is not just a passing trend, it is a must have.
The Keyword tool and content optimizer is a great helper in this matter. It's like having your best buddy who you can call in the middle of the night to avoid trouble. You can find new topic ideas and keywords related to what you are targeting.
You can get an idea of how difficult it is to rank these particular keywords. It also shows you how relevant other keywords are compared to the current ones.
It is best if the keywords that you are trying to rank for have a high search volume and a low level of difficulty. A high search volume means the phrase is popular and a lot of people are typing it in their browsers. Low difficulty in content and links means that it is pretty easy to rank on this keyword without many links or highly competitive content. The combination of these three metrics results in profitable phrases that are easy to evaluate.
Why should an analysis start with keyword research?
Because if you don't know the keywords you want to target, you may not know your true SEO competition.
This step also determines the level of difficulty at which you want to perform the analysis.
For example, let's say we are in the shoe store and want to open a web shop. Depending on our budget, we can either choose keywords with a very high search volume or keywords with a lower search volume. Keep it realistic.
It either takes money or time to get there. Either way, it will take some time since you are working with organic search.
|Without strategy, content is just stuff, and the world has enough stuff.|
|Award nominated author|
The trick with ranking is not to force it. When everyone is trying to rank on the same keywords, there isn't much room for long-term development. This is where you can improve and find keywords that are semantically related to your niche, but not necessarily used by your competitors.
Check out the top of mind keywords
Top-of-mind keywords are phrases that pop up in your head the moment you think of a niche. It's like a brainstorming process. They are also often referred to as startup keywords.
You can use the google search engine for real-time suggestions. Just go to google and enter your keywords. New ideas are displayed just below the search bar. A very competitive keyword in this case would be “buy shoes online”.
Sentences with the word "buy" are known as buyer keywords or transaction keywords. They're usually the most competitive because we know from the sentence itself that people are already ready to buy the product. The ranking for these keywords practically guarantees that some sales will actually be made. Big players come where sales are guaranteed.
A lower competition keyword may be "best shoes for …".
More niche phrases tend to be less competitive. One reason could be the fact that they're unused, which means that not many people have actually discovered them. They are known as longtail keywords. Review and comparison sites often try to rank here. People still tend to buy, but for now they might just be trying to compare products or come up with ideas.
Search for seed keywords in the Keyword Explorer or Google Keyword Planner to get new ideas
Use the startup keywords you acquired in the previous step to make a list of keywords.
You can work classically and use the Google Keyword Planner. However, the data is limited if you don't have a paying AdWords account.
You can try several keywords here, export the data as CSV, sort the keywords and add some to your list.
The keyword tool from kognSEO offers you countless keyword possibilities. You can search Google for questions that are looking for an answer. You can filter the keyword ideas by volume, relevance, etc. to find the best keyword opportunities for you.
Prioritize the keywords that you want to rank for
Now comes the harder part.
For which of these keywords can you realistically rank in the top Google search?
Now that you've established a list of the keywords you're looking for, there are two things you need to look at:
Content performance and domain performance.
You can use the Ranking Analysis section of the Content optimization tool.
As an example, let's take the keyword that we are talking about in this article: content marketing services.
With just one click you can see a lot of important measurement data:
- How many links would this article need to be competitive?
- What is the monthly search for this keyword and what is the search trend for it?
- Who is in the top 10 and what does their content look like?
- How old / fresh is the content?
- What focus keywords did my competitor use in their content?
While content performance is something that we are in control of and will improve in a future step, we don't have that much control over backlinks.
So you want to see websites with as few referring domains as possible compared to your website (which you can check with the Site Explorer).
Of course, if you see a lower content rating and / or word count, these are also good indicators that it's easier to create or improve content for existing content.
Choose top keywords based on relevance and search volume
For this analysis example, we'll stick with the following keywords: "buy shoes online" and "best shoes for". One is wider and the other is narrower, but both are attractive in terms of relevance and search volume. Let's say we start at the very bottom (narrower keywords), but leave room for extensions in the future (wider keywords).
From these two keywords, we can see that the broader keywords tend to return root domains as results while the narrower pages of websites return. This is a good indication of what our homepage should be aiming at and what we should be aiming for with pages.
The final list should include keywords in your general niche and some current or potential (future) sub-niches. You can group them into separate sheets. This makes it easier for you to select top competitors from several sub-niches. The more keywords you want to analyze, the better you will understand what you are dealing with in the long run.
You can easily find the keyword for which you have already ranked using the Google Search Console. (The following screenshot was taken in June 2020).
Can you improve this existing content? Or should you target new keywords? These are questions to ask yourself as you are putting your SEO content marketing strategy together.
Don't worry, compared to the previous section, creating content will feel like a breeze on the list of content marketing services.
First, keep in mind that it is always best to consider landing page optimization for a single main keyword and a single search intent per page.
You can sometimes combine very similar keywords, but try to stick to one main keyword and search intent as much as possible. Feel free to find out More about search intent here.
A great way to do this is to write content on questions that are very common in your industry or case studies.
For example this article about Meta descriptions affect SEO or not got linked multiple times by other SEO blogs who tried to make a quick point without going into too much detail.
Write content that gets noticed and is worth sharing.
Also make sure that:
- Have great titles, headings, and descriptions.
- Optimize your titles with keywords for SEO, but keep them catchy for social media too.
- Use the Open Graph property to set different titles for SEO and social media.
Long-form content tends to perform better in organic search results. However, take a look at what type of content your competitor has. Is it long short What type of content does Google provide on its first page for the type of content you want to rate?
You keep hearing: Write content with readers, but also with SEO. But what does that really mean?
We can spend a lot of time debating this, or we can use a tool that allows us to write exactly this type of content. Since time is so precious these days, I'll choose the second option.
Open the Content Assistant section of the kognSEO Content Optimizer and click Start Optimization.
Once you do, everything you need is there:
- the keywords that you should use in your content
- the content rating you should achieve
- Keyword ideas for your content
- the focus keywords that could help your content rank
- The keywords you shouldn't use that often to avoid filling in
Basically, you get all of the resources you need to write content that is relevant to your users, but also SEO oriented.
The idea is to think of the recommended keywords as subtopics or areas of interest that you should address in your content.
When people are looking for something, you already know they are interested in it. This is why SEM has such a high conversion rate and people spend time reading in-depth articles.
Regardless of the tools you use, remember that the best tool available to you is your own knowledge.
You should keep in mind that writing is the best way to go naturally.
The journey shouldn't stop when the article goes online. On the contrary, you should continue the process of improving your content. You need to understand that content distribution is not a single technique or a one-time thing. It contains a number of unique techniques that you must follow for better results.
We all had this moment when we put our souls into a post and made it so shiny, with thorough research, relevant pictures, but nobody read it.
And then you wonder what went wrong. What in the name of god happened Or why did it happen to you? And the questions could go on.
But there is something that you missed. And that “something” could be the distribution and reinforcement of content.
Content distribution is a powerful way to reach a wider audience.
Expanding your content should be mandatory if you want people to know and increase your website traffic.
You can view the distribution process as a way to strengthen the signals of your contribution. And here are some channels to do this:
If in the past the traditional methods of creating links were meant to spread meaninglessly across the internet using web directories, blogrolls, keyword stuffing, and others without thinking of relevance and essence, now we need to think about our target audience.
Things have changed now, but links are still an important ranking signal and they are very helpful when trying to rank high on the search engines.
It's a harsh reality, but generating links through content marketing is certainly getting tougher.
However, more difficult does not mean impossible. Use blog posts, videos, infographics, eBooks, etc. Create resources that are valuable and deserve links.
Don't forget the internal link either.
If you are looking for an SEO step that can quickly improve your website's position, the internal link is the step you want to take.
A proper internal linking strategy can really increase your ranking performance as it does two things:
# 1: It helps search engines understand the structure of your websitehow different pages interact with each other and which pages are really important to the structure of your website.
# 2: It helps users navigate the website and keeps users on the website by providing relevant content via links that can be followed. This ultimately sends another signal to search engines that your website is great as it has a good user experience.
If you are interested in valuable link building lessons written from experience, read this article.
I know and you know The internet is so tired of marketing strategies that people are becoming immune to content in mediocre form.
Influencers in certain areas are not that easy to impress anymore, and to get your brand "in your mouth" you need to do some wheel lubrication.
This is why it is very important to create content that is worth sharing. Content that "has something to say" that brings added value.
There are many tips and tricks out there on how to get better results on social media. You can consult Blogs like BrandMentions"One for it.
Promote your content as much as possible, but on the right social media channels for your niche.
Use social media advertising (such as Twitter or Facebook advertising) if necessary. Take advantage of affiliate programs, custom content, and opt for influencer marketing when needed.
However, it is very important to be visible on social media.
Community & Relationships
When I think of content marketing, I think of a line from the Jerry Maguire movie – Help me, help you!
We have seen that common content marketing outreach methods like guest blogging have been misused in the past because people misunderstood the idea behind it.
Generating links through content marketing is not about asking for them, but rather about building relationships with other companies and people who are in the online medium.
You can't strive for first place in Google's eyes if you can't make new friends willing to talk about you and share your content, or vice versa.
If you beg your link out of a situation, it will do you more harm than good. We therefore do not recommend this.
There is a way out and creating content that others may find interesting enough to share with their audience.
Organic links are a “hard-to-get-hold” commodity these days, and you will love to find and maintain connections with influencers who like and distribute the content you create.
In order to help yourself, you must first attend to the needs and interests of others!
If you can't produce engaging content on your side of the street, go to where the discussion is taking place.
It may sound like a cheesy tactic, but I assure you, it's not a laughing matter. You can include comments in your content marketing strategy as you can generate links while helping the community in real time.
Comments are a great way to:
- create meaningful content
- Connect with your target audience
- Naturally, create links that point to your website.
Comments can turn out to be a double-edged blade and you need to handle them carefully.
Try to find the most important forums in your niche and where the discussions are taking place.
Take a look at what people are asking and what questions they have.
As long as you stay on topic and your comments aren't just for link building, you don't need to worry.
Listed above are just a few ideas for distributing content. Check out this article for more ideas on reinforcement.
Constant updating of the content
What if I told you that there is another way than tapping into this creative juice keg?
Nobody expects you to be constantly creating original and engaging content.
You just can't produce high quality content on the assembly line, and everyone knows you shouldn't resort to gimmick techniques to get your audience's attention.
You can recycle outdated content that might still be of interest to your target audience.
Some content has been ingeniously created and widely distributed in the past. However, this does not mean that you cannot turn the interest already developed to your advantage.
The widely used and shared infographics that have sparked much discussion over the internet can be revamped with the same layout and structure, but with fresher and more relevant data.
You can also improve on old content by adding more information and therefore more value to the viewer.
This may be attractive to those looking for a shortcut method of creating content, but it should be part of a balanced diet.
It seems easy to exploit, but if not done correctly it can end up serving poor quality content to your website.
We ran an interesting experiment a while ago: we updated 40 blog posts with fresh, updated information.
The result? 70% increase in SEO visibility. So it could be a tactic that could work for you. You can view the case study here.
Content analytics reporting
You know the saying. No work is done until the paperwork is done.
In our case not literally paper, but reporting on the results. This is an equally important part of the list of content marketing services.
So you've created a content marketing strategy. You've written great content or updated the existing one. They are very common.
What should be done now?
Check the result!
But what should you check?
Measuring content marketing and SEO efforts is often easier said than done.
However, here are some metrics that you should definitely keep in mind.
Organic search traffic
Organic search traffic refers to website visits that come from search engine results rather than ads. Organic search traffic is a highly effective indicator of overall success. If a website's content contains keywords that often match users' search results, then that website is likely to show up on a larger number of search engine results pages (SERPs) than competing websites.
Using Google AnalyticsOpen the Acquisition menu. From there, select All Traffic and then Channels.
You will now get an overview of the traffic sources of a website, sorted by channel.
Select the organic search channel for a useful report showing a website's organic traffic stats.
This report is versatile. It gives SEO practitioners the opportunity to share important information such as:
- Which landing pages are most effective in attracting visitors?
- Which keywords get the most traffic?
- Which of the search engines are driving the highest organic traffic to a website?
- Which pages are often the biggest home pages (or the last page a visitor sees before leaving the site)?
- And many other important statistics
The keyword ranking indicates how well or how badly your content is ranking in SERPs for a certain search term.
Google Analytics is not as helpful as some SEO experts would like it to be for tracking keyword rankings.
Often times, the phrase "not provided" appears on the Keyword tab (within the Campaign tab).
Instead of Google Analytics, consider the Rank Tracker from CognitiveSEO.
One of the advantages is that you can track keywords at both the universal and local levels. You can also analyze the keyword performance of competitors.
So add your keywords for which you have created content in the Rank Tracker and keep checking the development.
Social shares can be simply defined as the sharing of your content by social media users.
While it is widely believed that Google doesn't consider social signals and approvals when ranking SERP results, social approvals are still very important to your SEO efforts.
Keeping track of your social shares is beneficial because of the important impact social media has on content marketing strategies.
The more people who share your content with their followers, the more likely it is that more people will view it and ultimately migrate to your website.
More visits to your website mean an increase in organic search rankings.
Useful for measuring your website's authority and popularity. Backlinks (often called inbound links) are links to your website that came from someone else's website.
Backlinks to your site can also come from other pages on your own site.
Measuring this performance counter goes a long way in helping you rank higher.
Keeping track of it you'll always know where you stand, which some in the SEO industry consider to be the top ranking factor used by Google.
If you know if you are doing well with your backlinks, you will know how much you need to improve.
Open the "Acquisition" menu with Google Analytics. From there, select All hits and then References.
You can now view your referral traffic. This is the way Google says "backlinks".
For a comprehensive backlink analysis tool, kognitiveSEO aggregates backlink data from trusted link databases and analyzes the links as needed for each of its customers.
I know there is a lot of digital marketing information to deal with.
But even if you are the one who implements all of the above content marketing services, knowing what it is about is important, even if you are hiring marketing agencies.
If you or your marketing team are out of breath (or worse, discouraged) after reading this post, don't let yourself get overwhelmed!
Take courage, force a smile, and accept the fact that victory will never be easy. I know there are a lot of things involved: technical SEO, marketing budget, web design, content calendar or advertising costs. But it pays off when it comes to building a strong and competitive brand.
Success and competitiveness are for those willing to work harder and get their hands dirty.
The bottom line here is that you can, and it will be worth it.