66% average increase in search traffic, after 1 year of consistent content marketing
Blake “Killer Content” Pappas, presented a top session at DigitalSummit Philadelphia. Long & short, after 10 years in business, his content agency has seen hundreds of companies attempt a content marketing strategy. Here's what the best companies do:
Content Marketing Really Works!...tell me something new
The challenge is consistent execution, specifically during the first 6 months, which Blake calls the trough of disillusionment, but stick with it! He averaged all of their clients, not just the best, and found that after 2 years organic traffic increased by 167%. Here are the critical success factors he has found, you know most of them but are you using tools to improve efficiency?
1. Executive expectations, life or death
If executives don’t buy in and understand that this is a long-term play, they will pull the rug out from under you. Blake has seen this far too many times and suggests sharing case studies, being super honest about the ramp time, and showing what your competition is doing to really give them the final push.
How can I monitor my competitors' content marketing? →
2. Optimize your content for Google, you spend too much time not to!
51% of your first time organic traffic comes from Google and less than 8% go to the second page of any search. We know this but you are too busy, and you just spent time writing the content, now you want me to do what with it? Get it on the first page with some simple changes.
How can I quickly optimize a piece of content for Google? →
3. Always be asking for their email. Wait what?
Email is not dead, 70% of consumers prefer email as the primary way to communicate with a business according to Marketing Sherpa. SEO, podcast subscribers, and social media followers are great, but that is not truly owning your audience. Blake says, “You don’t want to build your business on someone else’s algorithm.” Email is everything, but please don't use popups!!!
How can I get more emails, the right way? →
4. Everyone in your company should create content
Your team is great, but you aren’t the source of all wonderful content. Blake encourages companies to foster a culture of content! Invite Albert from Accounting or Susie from Sales to join your brainstorming sessions or give them cash for every piece they write.
How can I organize content production to include more than just my team? →
5. Prioritize your audience over your brand
This one kills us. The only thing your reader cares about is the topic of your title. Please stop going on about what your company does unless it is brief and only used to increase credibility. Instead of, “Hey we are a creative agency that helps thousands of top brands, and we would love to help you!” , try a more sincere approach that builds the credibility of what you are about to say: “We aggregated post performance and scheduling times for all 10k of our clients and found the best time to post an article.”
How can I know if we are being too “salesy” with our content? →
6. Test, learn, iterate with basic analytics
Once again you know this, but Blake still finds that most companies aren’t doing it! Why? Well, because it takes time and you are busy. At a minimum, you should know the audience (Who?), behavior (What are they doing?), and conversion (Are you meeting your goals?).
How can I start small with simple metrics? →
7. Set your content free & don’t overanalyze
Did we find every possible mistake? What will our audience think? Ahh, don’t worry so much and just set your content free once you have reviewed it with the right people. Blake found that too many companies don’t post content after spending weeks creating it!
How can I avoid editing mistakes and make my content easier to read? →