Content strategy involves the creation, distribution and governance of content that the public finds useful. The strategy can be applied on any type of content, whether it is the form of writing, graphics, audio or even video. One of the most important aims of using content strategy is to publish content that encourages discussion or interaction between different parties.
Whether it is building a brand or establishing authority on a specific topic, developing a content strategy is important. A lot of small and medium-sized companies tend to overlook the importance of having a content strategy, producing as much content as possible and publishing them on as on many platforms available. What people tend to ignore is that the quality of an article is more important than the number produced. Developing a strategy is beneficial for the website and the business itself. Here are some of the reasons why developing a content strategy is important for the website and the business or brand.
- Encourages the production of better content
Writers and publishers that are following a strategy have a better idea on what to write about and how to present it so that it corresponds with the plan. With better content, companies will be able to provide better value to their customers and clients.
- Improved rankings
People like to share quality content or link to the website that published the content. Either way, this increases the value of the website. This in turn helps boost the website’s rank on search engines.
- Provides a point of reference
Having a content strategy makes it easier to determine what has been published and measure its success. Afterwards, the management can determine whether the strategy should be continued, repeated or altered.
10 tips on developing your content strategy
1. List the objectives of your content
Similar to writing a business plan, it pays to be as detailed as possible when it comes to determining your objectives. What are you trying to do with publishing this type of content? Identify and describe your target market. What will they do after reading your content?
2. Know what search terms users really use
Search engines try to match the right website to the reader with the help of keywords. To gain more traffic, it is important to understand how people search for products and services or information. Armed with that knowledge, determine the set of keywords that your target market might use to search for the products or services you offer. Try to think of alternative terms that have the same meaning as your set of keywords to broaden your range yet still being consistent with your message. Spread these keywords within your content.
3. Produce quality content
Try to produce unique and original content. Google, in particular, penalizes websites that produces rehashed content.
4. Optimize the webpage
Each component of the webpage must be consistent with the set of keywords used in the content. This means using the same set of keywords on the title, subtitle, links and even the URL name, if possible. Also, don’t forget to make your site mobile compatible. With the ever growing amount of users, using their mobile devices to browse the web, ensuring compatibility to serve your content is no longer an option.
5. Use a variety of content
Keep the website content interesting by using different types of content. Use videos, audio and even infographics to convey your message.
6. Update content frequently
Google places higher value on websites that continually produce fresh content. This does not always mean publishing a new article or uploading media. It can be as simple as adding new information on existing web pages.
7. Speed up page load rates
How long it takes to load a page can quickly put off readers and deter them from coming back to the website. Make it load as quickly as possible by avoiding uploading large images or using a lot of flash animation on the website. If you are using WordPress, excessive use of plugins can deter your sites performance. Make use of tools to evaluate which plugins affect your sites performance and either get rid of them or find suitable replacements.
8. Use web-friendly fonts
Some types of fonts do not translate well when viewed online. Use more search engine-friendly fonts that will not affect the overall look of the webpage.
9. Utilize explanatory URLs
URLs that are more descriptive give search engines a better idea of the content of the web page. Be careful with choosing a URL name as this could also affect the webpage’s rank on search engines.
10. Encourage sharing
The more eyes that see your content, the better it is for your marketing strategy. Allowing readers to share the content will make the content appear more valuable in the eyes of search engines.
Manifesto of Content Strategy (Rand Fishkin)
That’s it! How about you, what other content marketing strategies do you apply?