Search Engine Optimization is the lifeblood of any business looking to carve out an online niche for itself. After all, it’s the proven way of upping your business’ ranking when potential customers search for specific keywords. There are few types of prospects as qualified as those actively searching for your services. However, SEO is far more than simply filling your website with a list of keywords. To truly take advantage of how SEO is tracked by search engines, you have to invest in content marketing. Businesses led the way, but even associations should be using content marketing.

What It Is

Content marketing is the simple act of regularly updating your website with relevant and valuable content aimed directly at a specified audience with the sole purpose of retaining and growing said audience. You’ll see why content marketing is so important, once you think about the types of content that resonate well. According to Pecanne Eby of BrandMentoring.com, “Content marketing has become a key inbound marketing strategy because it helps organizations attract more customers via online content in various formats, such as articles, e-books, cartoons, case studies, videos, infographics, PowerPoints and more.“ Because they are written about your organization’s main topic, it can be assumed that any keywords you want to appear will be featured naturally throughout the content thereby driving your SEO capital in a natural way – something that search engines love.

What It Is Not

Content marketing is not keyword stuffing. It is not irregularly released content written around a word count. It is not useless to your audience. Writing to fill an SEO quota is the trademark of any desperate company looking for a fast way to climb the ranks. Instead of taking the time to slowly build a solid foundation of content that helps audiences understand or grow, they throw together poorly written articles too laden with keywords to be of any use to anyone. Search engines are also extremely sensitive to this type of word stuffing, often limiting the company’s ability to place highly in the ranking system.

Merging the Two

Currently there is a debate as to whether content marketing has officially killed SEO or at least maimed it. Though people naturally want to assume sides, this way of thought is incorrect as SEO is as much a part of content marketing as content marketing is a part of SEO. The two are inextricably linked, two halves to one whole. Without one, the other can never truly reach its ultimate potential. That being said, how do you find a balance between the two?

Arguably the best way is to focus more on better content even more optimized for your current and desired audience. As mentioned before, the subject matter alone will warrant the continued use of words and phrases that then create your company’s organic SEO. If you want a bit more control, you can even create a list of desired words without tacking on any sort of use requirements. Good writers will work in what they can where they can so long as it doesn’t hinder the overall flow of their work. Aside from this, just make sure the content is always released on a predictable schedule and you’ll easily find yourself with the best of both worlds.