Image of racer starting to illustrate the competitive nature of content marketing and the challenge of creating content that ranks, engages and coverts.Content marketing is hyper-competitive, so how can you gain an advantages?

Any seasoned digital marketer has heard these kinds of requests more than once:

  • I want to rank number one in Google for a keyword.
  • I don’t care about keywords, I just want to create something engaging.
  • I want my blog to generate more business (leads, sales, etc.)

Many content marketers may think, “Okay. At least they are focused on a goal.” Still, the best content creators out there are thinking about all three, all the time.

The Death of the Keyword. Long Live the Keyword.

Keywords have had a checkered history. At one point it seemed like they were the only way to success. Today, if overused, KWs can tank your search rankings.

With advanced algorithms and machine learning, search engines can even offer synonyms or read the intent of the searcher. This means your content can rank even if the exact keyword doesn’t match.

“No matter what you write, pick a keyword. You don’t have to obsess over it or stuff it, but it should guide you.”

Still, no matter how people search, they must use language, so the KW will always matter — at least until Google rolls out pheromone based search.

Bottom line: No matter what you write, pick a keyword. You don’t have to obsess over it or stuff it, but it should guide you.

Create Content that Engages

It’s unbelievable, but there are still content creators out there that rely on KW strategies alone. It’s as if they believe getting a click is all that matters. If they come to your page, it might be the only chance you ever have with that prospect. What do you want them to encounter?

“If they come to your page, it might be the only chance you ever have with that prospect. What do you want them to encounter?”

Do your best to be awesome – or at least thoughtful. You don’t have to have the longest, most dazzling content out there, but have something worthwhile to say. Put your heart into it. Let them come away challenged or enlightened in some small way at least.  

Create Content that Converts

It’s gotten to the point that conversion has almost become a dirty word when mentioned along with engagement. It’s all about cultivating relationships, right? Still, don’t be afraid to nudge them into conversion. Or even better, give them something they would love to convert on, like a useful free download in exchange for their email.

You don’t have to be pushy, but a puritan approach could waste a great opportunity. At least give them the option to move forward with every piece of content you publish.

“Or even better, give them something they would love to convert on, like a useful free download in exchange for their email.”

The Content Trifecta

Any piece of content can focus primarily on ranking, engaging or converting. Still, all three elements should be considered in every piece of content.

This holistic approach works when you have the audience’s best interest in mind, which means:

  1. You make something search engines understand, recognize and brings visitors to a relevant page.
  2. Your content has something worth saying. It may not be 100% new, but you offer an original take on things. Even rock song covers can be a huge success. 
  3. An attractive opportunity to convert is offered at some point. It’s not “salesy”, but rather, tempting to the reader since it might help them down the road.

So go for it. Generate content that works for you on many levels.

Need help creating content that ranks high, engages and converts? Call us at (443) 475-0787 or Contact Us online.

What Is Content Marketing?
Content marketing refers to the creation, production and distribution of content that is crafted to be relevant and valuable to a target audience. Sometimes the content is pushed out to an audience via emails, social media or paid advertising, and other times the content is published on a website where it eventually ranks for relevant terms and attracts site visitors who are interested in the specific topic. These two types of content marketing – outbound and inbound – are often used in tandem.
What Is High-Quality Content?
Good content is professional material that is highly relevant to your target audience. High quality content is good content that performs very well. There are several metrics you can use to analyze the performance (and quality) of your content, for example: conversion rate, organic Google ranking and social media shares.
How Do You Know If Your Content Is Performing Well?
To know if your content is performing well, you can track and measure the performance of your content against your content average and also against industry benchmarks. The Content Marketing Institute offers a comprehensive list of key performance indicators (KPIs) based on content type that you might consider tracking.