Once you have excellent content at your website, you can improve your rankings and traffic with well placed content in other places on the web. This content can include guest blog posts, press releases, multimedia content, or articles, lenses, and pages which link to your site.
Content marketing has a number of benefits for websites:
- Links back to your website are a vote of confidence in the virtual eyes of the search engines, and increase your rankings.
- Quality content which either comes from your company or cites your company as a source shows your authority and expertise on your subject.
- Anchor text in links from your content clarifies the purpose of your website and associates it with valuable keywords, again in the virtual eyes of the search engines.
In order to accomplish this in an economical way, lots of sites have chosen to post articles at sites like Buzzle, Ezine, and similar free article directories. It’s possible to hire article spinners at bargain rates to take a single article and rewrite it into dozens of articles with essentially the same content, posting them at multiple article banks to spread links far and wide. Posting an article at one popular site could result in dozens of other sites’ picking it up and spreading it even further, often with automatic software that just looks for matching keywords. User generated content could get your articles, however generic and unoriginal, all over the internet, and for some people this has worked well.
Then came Farmer/Panda. Google’s algorithm update slapped down the content farms and devalued generic and duplicate content. While the overall quality of your site is still the key to your Google rankings, the quick and easy article links became worthless. With Google carrying 80% or more of online search traffic, traditional content marketing didn’t look like such a bargain.
New Rules for Content Marketing
The first rule for content marketing after Panda is this: make sure all your content is original. Making a list of popular links and putting a new title on it, using a thesaurus to swap out the verbs in an article in order to create a dozen articles from one set of ideas, or simply copying what other people say will no longer work. Use multimedia, a different voice, or your own company brand to distinguish your content.
The second rule: make sure all your content is high quality. Your articles need to make a point, they need to be well written and accurate, and they need to be worth reading. If your company rents out tuxedos, an article about the importance of owning a pink bow tie would be original, but it wouldn’t be worth reading. Instead, share useful information even if it may not be new to everyone – but add your own point of view and your own thoughts.
The third rule: place your content well. There was an idea that articles could be posted everywhere, and that it didn’t matter if they were never read. Instead of article directories and content farms, place your articles at the sites your customers are likely to read. Then support it with social media: Tweet your article, mention it at LinkedIn, link to it on Facebook. Following these rules will not only give you the links you wanted, it’ll also make it more likely that your off-site content placement will result in new traffic to your website.
What’s so new about this? Not much. GlowHat has always focused on quality content and wise placement in content marketing efforts. The shake up in the Google algorithm actually means that the content marketing we’ve done for our clients in the past is more valuable now than it was before. Keep the user experience in mind, and your content marketing efforts will continue to pay off.