Create engaging content, and the users and search engines will come.
Sounds simple, right? Well, it actually might be. If you can develop a piece of content that your audience finds useful enough to want to share with friends and colleagues, then you are on the right path.
The key thing to remember is that great content generates authority signals – by acquiring links and social shares – which make it easier for engaging content to rank. A link or a “like” and share on a social network are signals to search engines that people like your writing, that people are promoting your work, and that your content may be relevant to other search engine users.
So the question is: how to create content that the target audience will engage with? Here are a few pointers:
Investigate the community
Prior to creating your engaging content, ensure you know where it will be going. Research the industry and find platforms and users interested in this type of content. Is there an active community that would share your content? Are there sites, blogs or forums targeting your primary audience? Look at the content your competitors are distributing – and where they are distributing it. Determine which content users find most interesting by looking at their comments, and at the number of shares different posts garner.
Develop a keyword-targeted editorial calendar
Developing an editorial calendar is a great way to help you produce a steady stream of regular, timely content. Better still is a keyword-targeted editorial calendar in which you align your content pieces with the keywords for which you want to rank. Not only will you be writing content that aligns with your industry – you will be increasing your site’s chances of ranking for target terms.
Distribute educational content
This sounds obvious, but it’s often left by the wayside by those who are overly focused on generating leads and selling more products. Many Internet users don’t want to be sold on your product – more often than not, they are performing research or looking to learn something new. It’s important to be there for them at this early stage in their buying process, also – not just the end.
In fact, educational content – white papers, videos, infographics, data visualizations – often garners more links and social shares and is thus viewed as more authoritative by the search engines. Remember, interactions with your content indicate to search engines that your content is valuable.
Bottom line, it’s all about developing content that your target audience will find useful. If the audience thinks your content is valuable, the search engines will too. Google has said that its goal is to provide searchers with the most relevant results and a great user experience – so if users are touting your piece, it’s a signal that it is liked. Write engaging content, let it reach the masses, and the other search engines will come.
This post is the third in a series of posts on how to maximize the value of search and it first appeared on CommPRO.biz. Check out the previous posts including part two on “The Need to Know of B2B SEO” and part one on “SEO 101.”