Why Content Marketing Is The Best Long-Term Marketing Strategy

Why Content Marketing Is The Best Long-Term Marketing Strategy

Content Marketing News

Content marketing is one of the best long-term marketing strategies for businesses.

Not convinced? If so, you’re not alone. The benefits and impacts of content marketing can be easily overlooked or just plain unclear to many marketers and business owners.

But here’s why it’s time to start taking notice of the value of content marketing and what it can do for your digital marketing efforts – as well as for your brand and business.

Why Content Marketing Is Essential

Slowly but surely, the world is moving into a digitalized and online-only era. We will soon not only stop using printed advertising and reliance on paper but forget that we ever did so in the past.

More and more businesses are turning to online-only strategies to promote eco-friendliness and create cost-efficient campaigns. There is no better time to take a look at some of the trends and possibilities that will lay the foundation for SEO and web marketing in the upcoming year.

10 Predictions for 2017 in SEO & Web Marketing

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Content marketing can increase online sales manifolds, but doing so takes time and effort. That said, some companies have got it right. For example, Scotts Menswear did a great job by building a blog that talks about everything from films, sports, fashion and topics that the targeted demographic will be interested in. The company focuses on engaging the audience rather than selling directly. It uses occasional links to promote their brand. 

Solid Content Strategy for eCommerce Brands

Email marketing is still the highest-grossing marketing channel per dollar spent, but a return on investment is impossible without a list of subscribers to send marketing messages to.

Ascend2, a marketing research firm, investigated the most effective email list acquisition tactics in its latest monthly report by polling 255 B2B and B2C marketers on the list growth strategies that result in the greatest benefits with minimum effort. 

Social media advertising was the top-ranking email list growth strategy, according to the study -- with 45% of respondents selecting it as an effective tactic. Social media presents an opportunity for marketers to acquire customer data and curate email lists on a channel where consumers spend a large amount of time, and it does so limited effort on the part of the marketer.

Just 37% of marketers selected social media as a channel requiring the most effort to be successful, likely because Facebook has made people-based marketing a straightforward process for marketers that can afford the ad spend.

Content Marketing Most Effective For Growing Email Lists

I was recently asked to provide a few of the local SEO tips contractors should follow to increase their online visibility and leads. Here are the top five areas that every contractor that serves a specific service area should keep in mind.

5 Actionable Local SEO Tips for Contractors

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The Content Marketing Institute together with Marketing Profs and Curata released an essential study recently.

You need to read it.

Why? Because it found that 75% of companies are increasing their investment in content marketing, and 43% are increasing staff levels. Content marketing works, and I’ll show you how and why in the next 3 minutes.

Chief Marketing Officers have repeatedly recognized the need for a core content marketing team. And this team doesn’t need to be led by a CCO--Chief Content Officer—a role which is being retired at many companies. Instead, the successful content leader typically has a marketing operations manager or writer/editor title. Their job is to develop and orchestrate a content strategy across the company.

If You Skip Content Marketing, You're Missing The Boat

Let me start off by saying that I absolutely love the idea of performing web and digital marketing services on a pay-for-performance basis. But some things that sound good in theory have disastrous consequences in their execution. [Insert political joke of your choice here.]

Many business owners look at the pay-for-performance model as a reasonable way to do web marketing. I mean, why pay if you don’t get the results you want, right? Usually, these business owners are wary of the amount of investment needed for success, or they’ve been burned by unscrupulous SEOs.

I get it. But companies can’t just turn over their digital marketing success to a marketer and walk away. It’s a team effort.

Digital marketing is like politics health care. Your doctor can only tell you what you need to be doing to maintain your health or recover from a disease, surgery or sickness. They can’t do it for you. They can give you prescriptions, put you in physical therapy — heck, even hold your hand if necessary. But no matter what, there are no guarantees of success.

This analogy has one major flaw, though. There are no losers for the sake of winners in health. In health, everybody can win. In online marketing, however, there are only so many top 10 spots in the search results. So maybe a political analogy is better here because, in web marketing, there will definitely be some losers.

Everyone has the potential to win, though. It’s just a matter of doing what it takes and hoping Google rewards you for a job well done.

I love pay-for-performance SEO but I won’t do it.

It's 2017 and life online is more dynamic than ever.

News and articles go viral every day-- then fade into oblivion just hours later. Social networking sites are booming one moment, but then a new player enters the field and knocks them off.

content marketing news

Despite all these changes, there's one thing that is still important and that all these new, fast online media focus on – content.

The stats show that High-quality content marketing is still one of the main ways of achieving digital marketing success for both B2B and B2C brands.

In fact, predictions say in 2017, over 70% of marketers plan to create more content than they did in 2016, and over 75% will invest more in their content marketing programs.

But like all good things, it doesn't come easy. 

Marketers today are turning to different mediums as well as publishing and distribution channels to stand out from the crowd.

While most content created by B2B and B2C marketers is still posted on company blogs today, it will likely be promoted across various channels – and usually on more than one at the same time.

The type of content created by these marketers ranges from good old articles and eye-catching and shareable infographics to videos that need a bit more investment, but promise more engagement in the end.

Content marketing is expected to be a $300 billion industry by 2019, so 2017 is definitely the time to invest in high-quality strategy, or improve the one you are using at the moment. This infographic from Point Visible outlines some insightful stats to help you do just that:

The State of Content Marketing in 2017: Stats & Figures

If you search for “link building tools” in Google, the first page of results will be littered with results like this: 

  • “50 Experts Reveal 3 Favorite Link Building Tools”;
  • “34+ of the Best SEO Link Building Tools & Software”;
  • “21 Effective White Hat Link Building Tools For Your Toolbox”

I get it — people love to tweet/share mammoth list posts (this is probably why they exist in such abundance) but, personally, I see a few issues:

  1. Most “tweeters” don’t actually read said posts from start-to-finish before sharing—they share solely based on the seemingly high-value title;
  2. It’s very difficult to give a decent comparison of 50+ tools in a single post—this often leads to “skimmable” content with no real meat/value;
  3. Most authors won’t have used all of the 50+ tools they’re recommending (especially if they’re paid writers)—this leads to vague, generic lists that do nothing to help you make decisions.

So, rather than writing yet another overwhelming—somewhat pointless—list of a bazillion link building tools, I’ll instead be showing you:

  • The 3 “types” of link building tools;
  • A few of the best tools in each category (and why you need them);
  • How to actually use these tools to build links (instead of just wasting money on pointless subscriptions)

Let’s get started!

3 Types of Link Building Tools and How to Use Them

This week hundreds of digital marketers, search experts, and content creators flocked to San Jose, CA to attend the Search Marketing Expo’s West Coast conference.

Beyond exchanging business cards, one-pagers, and swag, what everyone was really after were the latest tips, tricks and trends in search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing (SEM).

SEO, SEM & Social Are Three Peas In A Search Pod

content marketing news

The impact of social signals on SEO has been a lively debate for years. In quick review: social signals are the activities found on social media posts, such as likes, comments, shares, and emoticons. Those are obviously good news – it's a sign that people are interacting with your social post! But marketers want to know, "Do these signals also boost the SEO based on post content? Are we getting a better page ranking out of this?"

The argument is ongoing, and complex, which is why you hear a lot of different answers. While we've mentioned this issue previously, we thought it was time to go into Mythbuster mode and really dig down into question: What impact do social signals have on true SEO?

The SEO Impact of Social Signals - Myth or Reality?

If you are creating stellar content, distributing it across the most appropriate channels on a consistent basis, and still aren’t getting the traffic results you expect, it’s probably time that you faced a harsh reality: If your content isn’t appearing on the first results page for relevant search queries, your target audience may never know it exists.

Fortunately, just because audiences haven’t been discovering your content on their own doesn’t mean you need to scrap everything and go back to the drawing board. Chances are the content you’ve created still holds plenty of value — and with a few simple steps, you can save it from obscurity.

In the top-rated presentation, he delivered at Content Marketing World 2016, Vertical Measures CEO Arnie Kuenn shares some of the proven techniques he’s used for improving the traffic his clients’ content generates through search. The following are highlights from that discussion, along with tips to jump-start your own optimization efforts.

Avoid Content Obscurity With 5 Traffic-Boosting SEO Steps

content marketing strategy

“I want my phone to start ringing by next month.” If you are a business owner and have conveyed these (or similar) words to your SEO company, one thing is clear: you have no understanding of search engine optimization or that it involves a process. If you work for a respected Google partner digital growth marketing agency, you most likely have a dozen stories to tell where clients expect the impossible, and then bounce after a few months of service because they expect their brand new website to generate the same organic traffic in 8 weeks that their competitor’s 15-year-old site draws.

Strong SEO and great content marketing go hand in hand. It's hard to get noticed on search engines and social media if your blog posts don't spark attention or reach the right audience. Without a solid content marketing strategy, your SEO is toast.

“SEO demands content,” says internet marketer and blogger Neil Patel. He explains that too many marketers try to treat SEO and content marketing as separate entities, which creates discrepancies in marketing success. 

“Content marketing needs SEO, and your SEO needs content marketing. These are no longer disparate departments with disconnected efforts. An SEO [marketer] needs to know about content marketing, and vice versa.” 

Higher search engine rankings aren’t a given when you work on your content marketing, though. It’s no secret that the right use of keywords, link building, social sharing, and guest blogging can put you ahead of competitors, and make for fierce competition. If you’re struggling to beat your competitors with content marketing, try some of these strategies. 

Give your content marketing a more competitive edge

I’m not sure if you’ve noticed, but newsletters are hot right now.

They receive far less attention than the latest whizzy technology, like live video, personalization, and interactive content. But that doesn’t mean they’re not incredibly popular and incredibly powerful.

content marketing strategy

Take for example theSkimm, a newsletter with a daily roundup of interesting articles. Launched in 2012, it has amassed over 4 million subscribers.

Newsletters work for business-to-business brands too — with AppSumo, an email list offering regular deals, having over 700,000 active subscribers.

Even The New York Times, one of the most venerable media establishments in the world, is big on newsletters, running no less than 33 (and launching more), with an average open rate of 50%. If that doesn’t legitimize newsletters as a major force, then I don’t know what will.

Why are they in vogue?

For readers, newsletters offer an easy way to stay in touch with their favorite brands or media sites. No searching on Google and not having to scroll through an overly busy social media feed packed with ads.

Newsletters are delivered regularly to their inboxes. With simple filters in popular email applications, all the rubbish is kept out of the way, so what people want to read is easier to discern these days.

For senders, newsletters are a powerful way to stay top of mind with readers, providing a direct route to getting their attention. The best newsletters — the ones readers value the most — get an almost automatic open because readers want to see what goodness is inside that day.

How to Create a Brilliant Newsletter People Want to Read

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of using various strategies to appear high in a list of online search results. In this article, I go over my methods and some important notes to keep in mind as a web developer.

Most of the traffic to my site comes from organic Google searches. Searching for how to make a Wordpress theme, how to use bootstrap, and Jekyll tutorial, including variations thereof and other popular search phrases, will list my site as one of the first results.

A Practical Guide to SEO with Google

With 96% of B2B marketers engaged in video marketing, video content is poised to be the new darling of the marketing world. Video can (and should) be an essential component of every business’s marketing strategy regardless of the product for sale or target audience.

As a visual medium, video content has a powerful influence far surpassing written content: according to Forrester Research, it would take almost five months to produce enough written content to create the impact of 60 seconds of video. In fact, four times as many customers would prefer to watch a video about a product rather than read about it.

How Video Marketing Can Improve SEO and Increase Sales

Social media marketing has been around for a while, and it’s become a proven tool for increasing traffic and generating new leads. Incorporating social media such as Facebook and Twitter into one’s business development strategy is an absolute must for any business these days. Ninety-two percent of marketers declared that social media was very important for their business, and 77 percent of them stated that their social media efforts increased traffic to their sites, according to Social Media Examiner research.

Those are not new facts. What’s new, though, are the tools you can use to enhance your social media efforts — like SEO and management tools. Let’s review seven tools that can improve your social media management and increase revenue.

7 powerful SEO & management tools

content marketing

Over half (52%) of small businesses in the US invested in search engine optimization (SEO) in 2016, and 74% expect to do so in 2017, according to new research from Clutch, a leading B2B research, and reviews firm. In addition, 66% of small businesses say they plan to invest in pay-per-click (PPC) digital advertising, such as Google search ads, by the end of 2017.

But despite this increased adoption of SEO as a digital marketing tactic, there is still a great deal of opportunity for small businesses to become more comprehensive in their search marketing strategies. Over 50% limit their SEO activities to local and on-site optimization compared to other initiatives such as content creation or guest posting.

"A comprehensive SEO strategy involves a multitude of disciplines including technical SEO, on-page optimization, outreach and content creation," said Stephen Jeske, Senior Content Strategist for CanIRank, an SEO software vendor.

Small Business SEO Investment to Increase Over 20% in 2017

With each update to Google's search algorithm, approaches to SEO keyword research become outdated. Despite being dedicated to their SEO strategies, many businesses aren't seeing any results due to misconceptions related to keyword research.

If this is resonating with you, then you should try to get a more modern keyword research strategy. Here are a few tips to get you started on the right track.

5 Tips for a Modern SEO Keyword Research Strategy

Reputable SEO companies seriously consider all official statements that Google makes about its ranking factors. But if Google is an SEO company’s only source of data and best practice information, the results of the SEO’s work are likely to be suboptimal.

Whether you’re trying to hire an SEO company or improve your own SEO strategy in general, remember a few things about Google: their word is not always their bond, their data is deliberately incomplete, and they are a for-profit company.

Why Google’s SEO advice is NOT (always) in your best interest

21st Renaissance

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Content Marketing Is The Key To Creating A Powerful Brand To Truly Separate Your Business From Your Competition

To truly create a powerful web presence you need to have an extraordinary content marketing strategy. SEO, PR, Branding & Content Marketing need to come together to create a powerful source of leads. Together they create the best possible long-term strategy & ROI.

Stunning Secrets Of An SEO Optimization Company

Stunning Secrets Of An SEO Optimization Company

Online Content Marketing Strategy — Is One Of Those “You Love It Or You Hate It” Topics

Online Content Marketing Strategy — Is One Of Those “You Love It Or You Hate It” Topics