Content marketing employs the strategic use of powerful keywords and information to help inform website visitors and drive sales. It also plays a critical role in helping your website rank high organically, as well as improving your chance of being used as a snippet by a popular search engine like Google.
This targeted use of relevant keywords plays an important role in marketing your business’s products and services to interested users. At the same time, frequently posting content helps show internet search engines that you are actively engaged in presenting helpful information to users, prospective new customers, and established loyal customers. This leads to a great chance of your website maintaining its high organic ranking over time.
The Evolution of Content Marketing
In the early days of SEO strategies, content marketing was little more than low-quality information chained together with some keywords and a few backlinks to add an air of professionalism.
Internet search engines were somewhat blind in those days and once they saw the basic things they needed, they were all too happy to assign a decent ranking to webpages and websites that match relative search terms.
In time Google and other popular search engines started realizing that a lot of the content being created was scraped from somewhere else and just retooled. It wasn’t really all that helpful and people were starting to tune out to poor-quality search information. Many times if they didn’t find helpful information, they would enter a new search term, scramble the algorithm egg all over again, or just bounce to another search engine in hopes of finding better luck.
This led to a certain lull in the authority and/or legitimacy of certain search engines. Instead of sticking to one tried and true source, they would search around, often fruitlessly to find the information they needed. Often leaving well-meaning businesses in the lurch, and users feeling like content marketing was a fad that came to the end of the inevitable road.
Of course, software engineers are not to be outdone. Today search engine algorithms have evolved to the point where they’re almost as self-aware as Skynet. They’ve turned to terminating low-quality website rankings and lowering the rank of all but the most helpful types of content.
What Does Effective Content Marketing Do?
Effective content marketing positions your website and your entire business before the world and the algorithmic eyes of popular search engines. Search engines like Google essentially act as gatekeepers deciding what information is delivered to the masses who enter relevant search terms.
When you create helpful, relevant content, that’s easy for the indexing bots to navigate, and demonstrates authority, the search engines open up the gates to let your content be devoured by the masses.
This has several benefits that go beyond what any fad can ever hold a candle to.
Stand Out from Your Competitors
Effective content marketing with helpful relevant content will do more than just grant you the occasional snippet and possibly improve your ranking in organic searches. Content marketing also gives you an edge over any-and-all of your competitors.
Especially helpful to local businesses that maintain a Google Business Profile and make an active effort to use the Google Search Console. Google then uses this information, and your content marketing to give you an exceptionally high rank over your competitors anytime someone uses a relevant search term and attaches the words “Near Me.”
Establishes Brand Authority
Digital marketing has evolved to the point where it is every bit as effective as direct marketing and other marketing vehicles for building brand authority. As you add content to your business website, your content library naturally expands.
In time, it becomes massive. Combined with backlinks, blogs, and links to industry influencers, it helps reinforce your brand as the commanding authority for your industry niche.
Empowering Users To Make Purchase Choices
High-quality content marketing that is rife with relevant information and helpful insights helps your users and potential customers make more informed purchase choices. Assuming that you are indeed an authority on your industry’s products and services, it greatly increases the chances that these users will choose your lineup.
Some of the best content marketing, like response posts, provide users with the quick answer they need to a related question. Then teases the opportunity to take a deep dive if they want to know more. When they inevitably do, it greatly increases the chances of your product or service being the one they choose.
Not only does this translate into more sales. It also increases the chances of your brand or product line earning word-of-mouth referrals.
The Future of Content Marketing
Content marketing has broken out of the mold of being a fad to become one of the most powerful forms of digital marketing. Though it still stands to evolve into the future. Some of the top digital marketing experts predict some of the future trends to hit content marketing morphing it into even more sophisticated forms.
Keyword Research Will Be Replaced by Topical Authority
Just like how a child learns how to read with simple picture books and small words, internet search engines and nearly self-aware algorithms are learning how to read entire websites to be able to pick out the ones that are offering the most authoritative content.
This gives them the ability to assign authority not just by the clever use of keywords, but also by the quality of the information presented on a given page. It also assesses value based on the presence of authoritative backlinks, connections to industry influencers, and positive reviews.
Entertainment with Information Will Rise in Importance
Just like when you watch a TV commercial, you are given a few snippets of key information, and then you are rewarded with entertaining images, a skit, or a comedic spin as a veritable “Reward” for continuing to watch without changing the channel.
This trend seems to be on the rise in content marketing. Especially in videos that provide granular content with an opportunity to know more. Those content marketers that can add entertainment value to the brand voice, or directly into the content themselves are more likely to receive a positive ranking than those who turn in spartan technical explanations to important queries.
Content marketing certainly isn’t a fad. Anyone who tells you otherwise is likely about to suffer a massive drop in their ranking and sales.
Content marketing is here to stay, and those of us who embrace it by offering up helpful, high-quality content stand to reap the rewards. Though it’s also not the sort of thing you can sit on your laurels about. The field of content marketing stands to evolve over time. The rules of the game are always changing and the playing field is always in motion.