After I wrote The More the Messier for Content Marketing SEO Success I received an email thanking me for the post, but also noting something else. While learning how to write content to best support your marketing goals, the golden ticket is what to write, week-after-week, that will drive people organically, over time, more and more, to your website.
What to Write?
It’s diabolically simple. I have at least a dozen topics that you can write immediately. And, even better, all of these posts will most certainly be as germane and bespoke to you and your business. What’s more, they will be just about as evergreen as you’re likely to ever get. And it’s so simple you’re going to kick yourself.
Write At Least One Blog Post for Every Page of Your Website
You heard me. Very few websites allow for long-form journalism, the kind of in-depth expository that allows your visitors and your readers to really grok and unlock everything you do, including all the remedials, backstories, answers to frequently asked questions, individual insights, and even your personal interpretation, spin, english. Expounding upon your products, services, and talent can both seriously woo Google (because Noogle AKA New Google loves long-form content these days) and also seduce your prospects into understanding that you’re not a bottom-feeder, that you’re not a commodity and that you and your products and services are worth way more than fairish market rate. The long and short of it is, start with writing a blog post based on every single page of your current website. Go do it!
Examples Can Include Absolutely Anything
- Expertise: a deeper dive into your expertise as a person or as a company is always the first thing anyone goes to when it comes to content marketing. Showing off one’s analysis of the current state of the art is the favorite go-to — but it’s really hard to keep up that sort of insightful brilliance day-after-day, week-after-week. That’s why people get some serious writer’s block when they’re tasked with populating an entire content-marketing blog that, like a bakery, starts going stale the moment you post your last article.
- Staff/Team/Partners: one of the best sources of a rich biosphere of content and diverse keywords comes from your staff. Two of the easiest: employee interviews and guest posts by employees. Start there and other variations of including your team in your content strategy will open like a flower. Just be sure to not edit out who they are. If you are too harsh with your red pen, you’ll both dispirit your employee to ever blog again and you’ll also ruin the natural language of their particular writing site. Biodiversity is seriously essential. Monocultures are vulnerable and true polycultural environments are much more resistant to pathogens, where pathogens are represented by the fickle and volatile shifting sands of Google’s algorithm. Allow as many diverse voices and writing styles and names and authors to exist on your blog as possible, just be sure not to edit all the diversity out of them before you click publish.
- Products & Services: I guarantee you that all the copy on your website is completely devoid of color, diversity, humor, and subjective tone. It sort of has to be because there’s a formula, an expected uniformity and professionalism that results in copy-by-committee, bureaucratic drivel that checks all the boxes but compels neither human nor machine (as in Google, Bing, and even Yahoo!). What you can do, via a blog, is do what I do every week: noodle around, let the keyboard take me where it might. I yell out to my Amazon Echo, “Alexa, remind me to write about what to blog about.” And then on Tuesday morning I try not to think too much about it. The words just tumble out and the lovely Eileen and Madeline do just a little bit of reigning in. In my agency, products and services are pretty much the same thing.
- History: every single person in the world loves to hear origin stories. Become a superhero to your prospective clients!
- Backstage: people really love process. When I was a professional stock photographer, people seemed to me to care more about my process, my origin story, my ASAs, film speed (yes, film, and Fuji 100 slide film was my go-to), camera body, lenses, and even the bag I used (Domke F-2) before they spent too much time looking at my images. Artists who have an interesting, tragic, spiritual, impoverished, or human-journey-inspired process almost always sell more art and for more money than often better artists who just sit in their studios, sober and sane, doing their taxes and books, raising a loving family. Who wants to spend $1.2M on something their kindergartner could probably do if it’s not the direct result of Angel-inspired, drug-addled, genius. People don’t only want to know how the sausage is made, they demand it!
- Clients: with the approval of your current and past clients, and with a sweet text link and a hearty thank you, you can probably write so much good stuff about work with your client that are a lot more free-verse than the almost unreadable clap-trap that ends up when you stuff all the months and years of collaboration and partnership into the terribly formulaic Case Study or Testimonial format. Get personal. Your clients really do want to become your work BFFs. The more work BFFs they have, the more they can play and recreate on the clock and the expense account. You dig?
I Am Assuming You Like Writing
So many people make excuses as to why they can’t, won’t, or don’t blog. First they start out with “why should I blog,” to “how do I blog?” Then they move on to “what do I blog about.” When you scratch past this, you’ll discover that, for whatever reason, they really don’t want to blog. It could be that blogging is below their pay grade (only trolls, who live in their mother’s basement, blog), it could be that they really don’t know how or don’t like writing. Or, the longer-form stuff really makes them too self-conscious or open to ridicule, to judgement (“Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent, and discerning if he holds his tongue” — Proverbs 17:28). Or, no matter how true this is, or how beneficial the time spent will reward them, there’s the “I’m too busy to blog” ploy. It’s all bullshit and always leads to something else. It means you need to find someone else who is passionate, excited, and enthusiastic about it. Either in your own organization or from somewhere else. A ghostwriter, if you will.