The goal of organic search is to have potential customers find your business by typing a couple key words. But, we all know that it’s not easy to be found, unless you have a good SEO plan that always includes a content strategy—geared toward long-term results.
What Is Organic Search?
Any traffic to your website through search engine results that are not paid.
Organic traffic is the primary goal of inbound marketing, which relies on planning, implementation and coordination. There are no tricks to increasing your company’s Google quality search rating. And, Google is very clear about their criteria for quality pages. So, a comprehensive content strategy will elevate your company’s position on a results page.
A content strategy for better organic search results is a major part of an inbound marketing plan, which defines a long-term plan that may be slow to provide results.
Traditional marketing channels won’t contribute to your online visibility, so you’ll need to think about more innovative ways to garner attention.
Inbound marketing plans with solid content strategies rely on a solid foundation of knowledge about your brand and your customers. Plus, you and your employees will need to frequently devote time and energy to implement it. If that’s not possible, then hiring a professional writing service and website developer will be needed. Both have the expertise in growing your online presence and may offer budget conscious plans.
Getting Better Organic Search Results
Getting better organic search results is neither cheap nor an easy endeavor. This is a process that takes time to develop (strategy) and multiple resources to implement. There needs to be a team of people who can work together over a long period of time.
For a small business owner or company with a small marketing department, they will need to determine how to allocate these resources prior to developing an inbound marketing campaign. Inbound marketing campaigns are filled with a wide range of activities that rely on content, graphics and design to capture the audience’s attention.
Create the Team
Whether it’s one or multiple managers, all direction and guidance should come from one source. They will also oversee the entire strategy, give approvals on topics, and manage the resources needed to implement it.
Typically, your employees are not business writers. So, leaning on them to produce a blog post may not be in your best interest, because bad writing will get lower ratings, hurting your chances to rise above the competition. And, most people find writing, any kind of writing, to be an exhausting activity.
It’s pretty safe to assume that your employees aren’t website developers or skilled in SEO. But they can understand the design and development of your website. Think of the design as a tree that continues to grow. A good design will allow for more branches to accommodate long-term needs. And, because website software is easier to use than ever, your employees can be trained to post simple updates and posts.
Building a Content Marketing Strategy
Every good content strategy begins with brand awareness. Your value proposition should guide the direction of what needs to be written and how. Remember, this is how you want to be found by prospective customers. It also works to reinforce your brand to current customers, which is very important for referrals and recommendations.
The following 7 factors are necessary for building a solid content marketing strategy. This list should be followed in order, because it moves from general goals to more specific details that appear in the actual content.
Goals – Setting the right targets will keep your team on track and hold them accountable. You need to describe each goal in detail and forecast the timeline. Is this a one-year, two-year, or indefinite plan? What are the milestones that you want to achieve? When are metrics analyzed?
Audience – Content marketing strategies examine the target audience and finds out how to capture their attention. You know your customers, so you’ll know their demographics and common habits and traits (psychographics). If you’re focusing on a new group of people, then their demographics can be found through a simple Google search.
Online or Offline – Content strategies are not solely tied to digital marketing. To keep brand messaging consistent, you’ll need to have your print materials mirror the digital platforms. Print marketing may need more time to develop, but it does have a longer shelf life.
Content Consumption – How your target audience consumes content will determine the type of media you use. Do they like video over text? Twitter sized tidbits of copy? Or, do they want to be informed?
Your expertise – What separates you from your competition? The value you bring to your customers is found in your expertise. This should guide all of the topics for a blog and any marketing campaigns.
Pain Points and Customer Needs – Pain points are moments of hesitation during the decision-making phase have a major impact on their choices. Good content should overcome your customers’ pain points by addressing their needs. Stay away from features and benefits! They come in much later.
Keywords – Now that you have a good direction for your content, it’s time to search for the right long-tail keywords. Finding the right keywords uncovers how people view topics that are relevant to your brand. You may also discover where your competition appears on a search results page. Remember that keywords may be a little misleading when it comes to understanding your audience.
Organization of Your Campaign
Once your strategy is completed, you can develop an editorial calendar for the digital marketing. Make sure you account for special holidays and anniversaries. Print marketing may need longer lead times. You should also schedule team meetings to discuss metrics and make adjustments as you go.
If you’re not already redirecting your resources away from traditional marketing efforts, then you may be missing out on a larger segment of your customer base. Driving more business through your website depends upon providing more relevant, high-quality content to your target audience. This involves an inbound marketing campaign with a strategic content marketing plan.
Writer. Editor. Project manager. Researcher. Collaborator. Graduate of the Spalding University Masters in Fine Arts with an emphasis in Fiction. Theory junkie. Avid reader. University of Iowa (BA '97).
Michael's unique ability is to understand and write to the audience for any business application or ghostwriting project. It's his passion for writing that keeps him learning more-and-more every year. He is a member of the Association of Writing Professionals, and fully versed in Associated Press (AP) and American Psychological Association (APA) writing guides.