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Unsure how to choose the best content marketing strategy that will bring long-term results? We've prepared 5 sure-fire content marketing tactics which you can start implementing right now.
These days you can type almost any question into a search engine and get the answer you need in milliseconds.
Looking for upcycled mid-century furniture in your local area? No problem.
Need to learn how to use Pinterest to promote your brand? It’ll only take a jiffy.
And whilst that’s great news for visitors looking for answers and information, it’s not such great news if you’re trying to make a splash with your own strategy for content marketing. Plus, on top of that crowded marketplace, you’re probably also struggling with one (or more) of the following limitations:
- A tight budget.
- No clear means of judging content’s return-on-investment.
- No guidance on which of the zillion content marketing strategies you should try.
- Struggling to keep up with the mysterious and ever-changing rules of SEO rankings.
Put all of this together and you’ve got the recipe for one, big content-fuelled headache. But don’t reach for the aspirin just yet — the Scribly team is here to help.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through some of the most legitimate, bonafide, and time-tested strategies for content marketing you can try today. The best part? They actually work. We know, because they’re the very same strategies we use every day.
Ready to dive in?
Strategy for content marketing #1: Leverage the power of evergreen content
We typically use search engines to answer questions, right?
That’s why people have started referring to Google as an answers engine, not a search engine per se.
So there’s nothing more irritating than thinking you’ve found the golden ticket to your burning question, only to find the article you’re reading either:
- Doesn’t answer it at all
- Attempts to answer it by stringing together a bunch of other sources together, leaving you more confused than ever
- Or answered it about ten years ago, meaning the advice is likely now out of date.
Luckily for you — as a business — this disappointment presents an opportunity. It means there’s a gap in the market for well-researched, genuinely useful content which is designed to stand the test of time.
We’re talking about content which covers topics which are always relevant — and are always being searched for. If you’re able to address a piece of content to topics like these, you’ve discovered the power of “evergreen” content.
As the name suggests, high-quality content on evergreen topics will remain relevant all year round. What’s more, it can form the bedrock of your content strategy. With just a handful of meaty articles covering a topic from top to bottom, you can tap into a source of organic traffic which — quite literally — never ends.
Strategy for content marketing #2: Revisiting your existing content
No matter how much work you put into a piece of content, it’s easy to forget all about it once you hit that ‘publish’ button. After all, the hard work is done, right? Well… sort of.
While any good content should help your website rank in the search results, Google’s algorithms have become much smarter than they used to be. These days, it’s all about relevance, intent, and quality.
This means that if an older piece of content becomes out-of-date or inaccurate over time, fewer people are likely to view it, and Google will pay it less attention as a ranking signal. The solution is simple: keep your existing content updated. If you haven’t revisited any of your old posts (or even static pages) for a year or more, this should be a quick win for you. Revisit the content, fix any inaccuracies, smooth over any rough edges in the writing itself, then republish.
Think of your site’s content as a living, breathing thing which represents you out there on the web — and put your best foot forward.
Strategy for content marketing #3: Optimize for the future of search
Building out a long-term SEO strategy can sometimes feel like a complete shot in the dark. After all, it’s impossible to predict exactly where SEO will go in the future.
But to shed light on what may be important for copy and content writing in the years to come, we simply need to look at what’s making waves in other aspects of marketing. And one of the most impactful trends to date is voice search.
We’re, of course, referring to the ever-popular voice assistants many of us now have in our homes: the Amazon Echo (usually known as Alexa), Google Home, and even Apple’s Siri. With voice search now the second-most popular way to search the web on mobile, it seems like it’s only a matter of time before we’re all asking Alexa to find everything we need online.
So how can your business take advantage of this shift? These quick wins can be built into your content strategy right away:
- Make use of the Q&A format in at least some of the content you publish. It’s easy: you simply pose a question and give a direct answer. Voice assistants love binary stuff.
- Update the tone of voice in your static page content to be more naturally conversational. Voice assistants are built with natural speech recognition technologies, which means there’s a very good chance these same advances will find their way into search algorithms, too.
- Try to “win” a featured snippet on the Google results page. A featured snippet is essentially a curated response chosen by Google to answer a query. While there’s no magical formula to win a snippet, keeping your content clear and concise — with direct answers to boot — is a great place to start.
Strategy for content marketing #4: Understand emerging technology’s impact on content
Luckily for the copywriters among us, it seems as though content itself will still require a human being… for a few more years, at least.
That said, there are still plenty of emerging technologies which can have a direct influence on your strategy for content marketing.
Here are a couple of key examples of technologies you should keep an eye on:
- Chatbots are becoming a very popular choice for engagement on websites. If you’ve ever seen a pop-up chat window appear when you land on a website, you’ll know what we mean. Chatbots are a great tool for engagement because they’re totally automated. A human is required to write the responses, of course, but after that? It’s all in the hands of the bot. Think of a chatbot as an extension of your content strategy — they’re your words, after all.
- While it’s true that humans are still a critical piece of the puzzle right now, there’s no doubt that the use of artificial intelligence in content marketing is only going to increase. It’ll be many years before they can write like a human, but AI algorithms can still be used to spot trends in existing content, build out content plans based on in-depth competitor research, and carry out performance analysis — all without any human intervention.
Strategy for content marketing #5: Build your content around keyword themes
Just as SEO is an ever-changing thing, so too is the way in which people actually search.
We’ve already covered a bit about voice search, but keyword-based searches have evolved, too. We’re now far more conversational and long-tail in the way we go about searching for the things we need. And your content marketing strategy should reflect that.
So, when you’re looking at your content calendar for the next weeks, months, or even years, you should consider using the keyword theme methodology — specifically leveraging pillar content and topic clustering.
Now, those terms may sound a little technical, but they’re not really:
- Pillar content is essentially a tentpole article for your keyword theme. It’s the centrepiece of your content calendar, and it should be as detailed, well-researched, and comprehensive as possible. Pillar content should give all of the high-level detail, but leave room for smaller more nuanced articles, too. Which leads us nicely to our next point...
- Topic clustering is a set of tangential content based on long-tail keywords which relate directly to your pillar content. For example, you might have a pillar piece about SEO and then lots of topic clusters covering tactical pieces such as keyword research, reporting, and so on. It’s a good idea to link your cluster articles back to the pillar piece, to complete the ecosystem.
Want to know more about keyword theming and topic clustering? If so, you’ve come to the right place, because this is the very same approach we take with many of our clients here at Scribly.
Bonus strategy: Let Scribly do the hard work for you
If there’s one thing we can all take away from this, it’s that content marketing is a tough nut to crack. Even with the right strategies in place, results can still be inconsistent without a solid plan — especially if you’re looking for a positive return on investment (and, let’s face it, who isn’t?)
Here at Scribly, content strategy is our bread and butter. And we’d love to help you develop and deploy a strategy for content marketing which really works.
Want to find out more? Get in touch today and let’s see where the power of content marketing could take your business.