Content marketing is an important way to promote your brand and get more visitors to your site, leading to more leads and sales.
However, too many people think that content marketing is as easy as adding a blog to their site and posting a few articles every now and then.
If you want to be successful with your content marketing, you need to develop a clear strategy and follow it consistently. Here is a 2016 content publisher’s checklist that can help you make sure you are about to publish a post that can get results:
Before your visitors ever read your content, they will see your headline and judge whether they want to continue.
Put everything you have into that headline. Make it interesting, informative and compelling at the same time. Bonus points if you can also make it entertaining or inspirational.
The best way to structure your content is to use the classic inverted pyramid format.
This is the same format that most newspaper and magazine articles use. In it, the most important information is presented right away, followed by pertinent details, followed by background information.
The format is a winning one because it puts the most important and compelling information right at the beginning, drawing in the reader. Ideally, your opening sentence and paragraph would be strong enough to hook the user and make him or her want to read more.
Of course, it’s important that you write quality content that provides some value to your readers, but your content should also be original, relevant and evergreen.
Originality will help your content stand out from the crowd. Readers will see through your content if it is spun or just regurgitates popular ideas. You need to offer a unique perspective or novel information to be valuable to your readers.
Though you may be tempted to dive into the latest trending topic, it is also important that your content be relevant and evergreen. Otherwise, you’ll only get a small bump in traffic, but the content will cease to be valuable after only a few weeks tops.
If you must write about a trending story, take a unique perspective and make it evergreen. For instance, you can explore the safety or policy issues in a recent tragedy or talk about how a viral video teaches important education lessons.
Most people will scan a page to determine how visually interesting an article looks before they dive in and start reading it.
An easy way to create visual interest to the text is to include headers, bullet points and bolded words.
Wherever possible, you should also include an image and graphics, such as small charts, figures, and infographics. You can also include a list of supplementary information, like resources or citations.
Not only do these components make the text look more inviting, but they also make the article easier to scan, which is important for those who are crunched for time.
Optimizing your page will improve its visibility in search, which will get more readers on your site.
You should optimize every post you write, including proper keyword usage, a meta description, proper use of tags and categories, alt tags for images and so on.
Proper SEO will make it easier for Google and other search engines to index your pages, and it will get the right readers to your site.
Internal and External Links
Links add value and authority to your content, and they can help with SEO.
You need to add external links to your content to back up the claims you are making. Link out to authority sources that provide additional information. You can quote the sources or just paraphrase the information they provide.
You need to add internal links to promote your other content and encourage readers to spend more time on your site. You’ll increase value to your readers by giving them more content that they need, and you’ll improve your site by improving your SEO.
In-Tag from CodeFuel can help you add both types of links. The content recommendation tool relies on user-intent signals to insert the right content at the right time for the right customers.
Call to Action
You don’t write content just for the enrichment of your audience — you do it to generate leads and sales.
In order to do that, you need to include a clear call to action on all your posts. Your call to action could be as simple as “Follow us on social media,” or it can be more promotional, such as “Click here to purchase this product that provides a solution to the problem.”
Including a clear call to action will improve the likelihood of your readers carrying through and becoming a lead or making a sale.
Follow these tips, and you’ll have success with your content marketing this year.