Build Your Blog Audience & Keep Them Coming Back [8 Tips]
You have heard it a million times. We have heard it a million times. Everyone has heard it a million times: “Content is King,” and “Focus on creating high quality content in 2014.” The majority of these references pertain to SEO and algorithm updates, but this shouldn’t be what your content creation should be based around.
You need to be creating content for what really matters, and that is your website visitor who has the potential to convert and ultimately pay for a product and or service offered by your company. Time for a wake-up call, because excellent content has the power to turn your visitors into cold hard cash. Below are eight tips that you can use to help create a solid content marketing strategy and improve your blog.
1. Stay Current
It is always a good idea to keep content focused around current events and news rather than rehashing old information. If the reader has already been exposed to the information in the past they will subconsciously associate the content with lower quality with little value. This goes back to number three above, as old and outdated information isn’t going to be useful to the reader.
2. Clean Website Layout & Design
It is a good idea to maintain a nice simple layout and design that presents the content in an easy to read format. If the website is too busy there is a chance the reader will lose focus. Avoid multiple pop-up opt-in forms and exit redirects. That is a surefire way to ensure the reader will never return.
While many content marketing strategies are designed to generate leads, there is a right way to do it and an obnoxious way to do it. Great content and one clear call-to-action is all that is needed. If the reader isn’t interested in converting then additional pop-ups are not going to change their mind.
3. Create Useful Content
A big mistake many companies make is creating content that just isn’t useful. There has to be a useful benefit associated with reading it. The purpose of content isn’t to fill pages and blogs with words. It is to offer the reader base useful information that causes them to interact with the company that is producing the content.
Focus on the quality of the information presented and the benefit it offers to the reader rather than focusing on the number of words. Many search engine optimization professionals are worried more about the word length for SEO purposes instead of the impact the content will have on the reader. The individuals engaging with the content are the ones that open their wallets and purses, not the search engines.
4. Make Sharing Easy
One of the benefits of high quality content marketing is the social sharing it can potentially receive. Our culture is addicted to social media and sharing information that is deemed valuable and informative. If they feel that what they are reading is useful they will share it, so make sure that option is readily available and easy to access.
There are many free sharing tools that can be installed on a website via simple HTML code or a WordPress Plugin such as Digg Digg. When good content receives a lot of social love the reach can be enormous, helping you to grow your blog readership.
The age old principle of, “Keep It Simple, Stupid” applies to content perfectly. It is important that the content relays the message in an easy to understand format that the audience will absorb and learn from. This isn’t a contest to see who can use the fanciest words or unearth the most creative synonym.
Write content in a way that gets the message across directly without extra fluff that the reader must weed through. Use good formatting practices and include headings, bullets, and numbers where appropriate.
6. Write for Your Target Market
Keep all of the content focused around the target market. When it begins to expand to subjects that are slightly related or quite off topic it can cause the reader base to lose interest quickly and devote their attention to other content that pertains to their subject of interest.
Once they are gone it is quite possible they have been lost forever. Stay on track and make sure all content is created with the target market in mind.
7. Get Analytical
Every website should have analytics tracking installed, either Google Analytics or similar, and more importantly it should be analyzed to help with the content marketing. Use the information provided to determine what content was successful and what was not.
Take into consideration the amount of time the readers engaged with the content and what occurred after. Did they immediately leave the website? Did they turn into a lead or a sale? Using the analytics data can help determine what topics the readers respond better to, allowing the campaign to be adjusted accordingly.
8. Only Publish Good Content
We saved this one for last, because while might sound like common sense, unfortunately not everyone understands that content should not be something that is just thrown together or outsourced to the company with the lowest price. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but $5 content purchased from an overseas provider is not going to benefit a content marketing campaign in any shape or form. If anything it will turn away anyone that comes in contact with it. If you are questioning your blog's quality then you might want to consider performing a content audit on your website.
Now, not everyone can sit there all day and crank out content. This is completely understandable, so in this situation it would be beneficial to bring someone on board that is an expert in creating great content.
These tips can help kick start a successful content campaign and they can also keep your current campaign on track. Focus on creating content that your target audience will find useful and you will notice increased conversion across the board.