What is better for your business: Content Marketing or Content for Links?

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Content Marketing: Selling To the Digital World” – Alan Smith  

 

Gone are the days when merely having a website with basic information would do the trick. In this immensely digitalized era, it is no longer enough to just shove your product or service towards your customers but instead, you need to completely modify their perception about your business, which directly affects your sales and in turn, your bottom line.

Nothing boosts online presence as effectively and efficiently as content marketing in today’s intensely competitive business world. Owning and successfully managing accounts on a number of social media sites has become a necessity, rather than a nonessential hype. Connecting with customers in a personalized manner, which can enhance your brand image as well as customer loyalty, has become a whole lot easier with social sites such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+.

Content Marketing: Selling To the Digital World” by Alan Smith
 

Making Way through the Google Updates

Google aims to provide its users with top quality content and hence, implements more than 500 algorithm modifications annually; based basically around content marketing strategy. With every new Google update, the hackneyed SEO methods find their way to the black hole. Particularly the Panda Update of 2011 and Google Penguin of 2012 have ensured that only fresh and quality content gets on top of the search engine list, instead of low quality, stale, spam-like content which survived on techniques such as duplication and keyword stuffing. Thus, to stay ahead in the searches, you must now focus and invest in content marketing strategy a lot more sincerely than ever before.
 

Making Relationships Worth It

When a company has been trading in the traditional manner for quite a long time, it’s understandable why it would be difficult for them to take everything I’ve just said at face value. After all, why waste so much of your precious time, effort and resources on generating, managing and controlling content when you can sell your product or service in the tried and tested conventional methods? A number of researches can change this view. For instance, statistics have shown that businesses with blogs get 97% more inbound links while 70% of customers prefer knowing about a business through articles instead of advertising.

Why the increase in customer awareness, acquisition or retention? That’s because relationships matter significantly in the business world, just as they do in personal life. Strong relationships with customers drastically increase the probability that they will come to buy from the same company again and again, leading to a much higher customer lifetime value. Content marketing facilitates companies in building and strengthening such relationships with customers. This means you are not only able to attract new customers, but at the same time gaining repeat purchases from the existing ones as well.
 

What Content Marketing Can Do for You

If you are still not convinced about investing in content production, there are still more benefits to enjoy, if you change your mind. Among the number of advantages that content marketing can provide for your business, the four major points are:

 

  1. Brand establishment
  2. A difficult, yet essential task in today’s business is to establish your brand via brand awareness. You don’t want your brand to get lost amid the thousands already out there. Content marketing helps with brand establishment by playing the role of a reliable source of information.

  3. Link building
  4. If you want to rank high on Google, you just can’t ignore link building. And building quality links isn’t as easy as it sounds. However, content marketing can make it a whole lot simpler for you by augmenting your chances of acquiring a remarkable amount of inbound links.

  5. Social engagement
  6. Social engagement is indeed driven by content marketing. Whether you upload a new video, tweet new information, post a unique status or reply with a comment, all of it requires content. In fact, what you see going viral on social media is nothing but content.

  7. Website ranking
  8. Content marketing boosts your SEO position significantly and pushes your website ranking to an astounding higher level. So you if you want your customers to find you at the first go, you need to generate quality content to drag up the search engine rankings of your company’s website.

 

Content Research – Collecting Statistics

Now, it’s clearly evident how important content marketing is for your business. Its significance continues to grow with each passing year. However, it can only bring your expected returns or more, if you know how to do it in the correct manner. Remember that nowadays, the content that works, tends to be the kind that is educational, engaging, original and timely. And this becomes apparent when you begin measuring the return on investment of your content. In order for that to be high, you need to be aware of what works best for you and your customers as well as what is being produced and shared out there in order to outperform them. This can be done by carrying out an effective content research. Now, how can you do that?

We can make use of the Ahrefs Content Explorer as a facilitator for uncovering top content worldwide. It also allows checking top shared/liked/retweeted content related to separate niches once you specify keywords of your choice into the tool’s search bar. And it will use these keywords to come up with a list of the most popular and top performing web pages for you. Al Gomez of Seoexpertpage.com admitted in his article that such tools are extremely needed to plan content marketing strategies.

If you want a more detailed procedure of how to use it, here’s how to do it step by step:
 

  1. Niche
  2. Begin with broad searches such as “content marketing” and then gradually shift to specific ones such as “viral content”. The tool tends to order rank the article list on the basis of a metric known as median of social metrics, however you can reorganize the list using publishing dates, number of likes or tweets and so on, giving you the freedom to filter the list using a variety of metrics.

  3. Competitors
  4. Never forget your rivals. While your competitors are keeping their eyes on your efforts, make sure to keep yours on their content by using the option “site:” to get information on the popular content of a domain of your interest. This way, you cannot only know what performs best in your niche but can also learn from their mistakes and successes.

  5. Trends
  6. Riding on the tides becomes easiest when you keep track of the recent trends. The Content Explorer helps you do that via its “Trends” tab. You can also research trends by filtering your search list based on dates to unearth fresh content for your business sites.

  7. Linkers
  8. Researching linkers are also important when it comes to content strategy. And this is why Content Explorer’s referring domains filter can play an important role by determining the common attributes of content which attracts links.

  9. Alerts
  10. You can save any or all of the searches at Content Explorer as alerts, too. This means you will automatically receive an email from it whenever the tool spots new content fulfilling your requirements.

 

Demand creates supply

It’s time to stop getting scared of Google updates and time to hit the road with a well planned content marketing strategy. And to plan a content strategy, you’ll obviously need detailed statistics of your competitors’ content strategies, and general trends in your niche. Always keep searching for new cool tools and keep your eyes on new abilities of the existing tools. Who knows, maybe sometimes they will do the entire job for you?
 

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Vladimir Ponikarovsky

Vladimir Ponikarovsky

Vladimir Ponikarovsky, senior online marketing consultant at Promodo and a video game sound designer, has more than 5 years of experience working with large content projects and big international brands. He possesses experience in organic search engine promotion in Google, Yandex and Seznam.

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  • Hey Vlad! Thanks for mentioning us. You made awesome points here and even discussed content marketing benefits in detail. I love how you stressed the importance of connecting with audiences. I highly agree with that. As a content strategist, I am often mistaken as a link-hungry wolf, waiting to pounce. But I just want to make informative content, like what you did here.