creating content - marketing strategy

'Better' is a tricky idea. When you're creating content, of course, you want high-quality productions that establish your expertise and persuade leads to become customers. But your audience has a clear-cut view of better: immediate answers, entertaining or easy to absorb information, and topical articles. Here's how to make them:

1. Give your answers immediately.

The holiday season is approaching, and that means people are going to be searching for specific answers more than ever. Whether they need to know what temperature to preheat the oven for the turkey or they need definite answers about a product's release date, consumers want fast answers with minimal clicking. Strengthen your search engine marketing strategy to make sure they're coming to you for answers. Here's how to do it:

The old strategy with blog posts used to be this: get your post ranked highly enough where consumers click on it for answers, then bury the concrete answer towards the bottom after a lot of exposition and graphics. There are numerous reasons why that's not a good idea anymore. Here are three.

That strategy doesn't work anymore.

If readers don't find an answer immediately, they'll get annoyed and leave. Both of those results are bad for your business. Annoyed customers won't come back, and high bounce rates weaken your standing in search engine algorithms. Recipe blogs and product review blogs have been some of the biggest offenders, so breaking the trend sets you apart.

Most of your readers are on mobile devices.

Descriptions and anecdotes don't translate well on small screens. Neither do large pictures. Mobile content needs to get to the point quickly, be highly scannable, and offer extra information at the user's convenience instead of throwing it in their way.

Even worse, most older sites have slow load times on mobile devices. If you haven't updated your backend processes for quick loading and minimalist, responsive design, readers will leave instead of waiting for your content to appear.

content marketing on a smart phone

You might lose out on the featured snippet.

If the search engine algorithm can't find the answer to a specific query in your content, it will look for a featured answer from someone else. You might still rank highly in the search results, especially if you have a large, reliable site, but you won't have premium visibility.

2. Broadcast your content so people can find it without searching your site.

Don't just write blog posts, publicize them on social media, and then forget about them. Every new article starts off as featured content. From there, it can find a place in your greater content library. You can:

Embed a link to the article in a content pillar article or long-form overview.

Specific, technical articles provide deeper reading who visitors who found one of your overview articles and want to learn more. So find which of your preexisting articles can be made stronger with a reference to your new article.

Link to it in your emails.

Tell long-time subscribers when you have new content. Whether it's relevant to a general audience or a highly specific block of your subscribers, smart email marketing tools can help you make sure it reaches the right readers. Posting an article on your blog's front page and social media is a bit passive, even though it's essential. Actively reach out to the leads you know will find the content useful.

You can do the same thing with old content, too. If you have new subscribers, you should be sending them a preprogrammed schedule of emails that introduce your company and content in an order that makes sense for new readers. If you have seasonal content that's relevant every year (like Q4 closing tricks, tax information, or holiday content), add the link to your emails. Just follow these tips about your newsletter's tone along the way.

Make email content out of your blog content.

Emails don't just have to be links, graphics, and article previews. Use your emails to tell a story. Many readers prefer emails they can skim through and enjoy without having to follow any links. If you have a recent blog post that's more chatty than technical or you talk about a recent development, that's perfect content for an email. Just copy and paste the bulk of your content, reformat it as second-person, or "you," email, and add something extra.

3. Have a process for creating new ideas so you're never stuck without inspiration.

No matter how much high-quality mileage you can get out of your previous content, you'll need to create specific email marketing text. It can be a draining process; creating content for specific target markets and customer personas can feel like a full-time duty. You have to go from brainstorming to researching to writing, editing, and optimizing, all on a set schedule.

There are a few easy ways to cut down on the first steps. Here's how:

Break your months into themes.

Every mailing list is intended for different audiences, and their customer persona profiles should tell you what they're interested in learning. So spend each month diving deep into relevant material. Not only does this give your email newsletters a sense of forward momentum (readers like a series instead of isolated topics), it means you don't have to brainstorm out of nothing.

Stay topical.

Every industry has breaking news. Even if your subscribers have already heard about their latest development, they probably want to know even more about it. So stay on top of industry news and repackage recent news in a way that speaks specifically to your readers and your services.

Plan ahead.

Email marketing software is built to keep you organized far into the future. You don't have to wait until it's time to hit 'send' to put your content into the program. Plan out your email marketing content in advance by making short lists of what should be covered next week, next month, and eight months down the line. 

Even if it's just a short note to yourself with a link to your Evernote files or a reminder, your future self will thank you.

No matter where you are in the content marketing process, 'better' is hard. Go to BOLD Worldwide for a service that can help make it easier.