A website redesign is the perfect time to give your content the up-and-down and see what you can improve – or at least reorganize. It may also serve as an opportunity to change your content creation habits and institute new practices. In particular, you’ll want to consider your blogging routine (or potentially, lack thereof).
As companies who blog receive 55% more traffic and 97% more inbound links than those who do not blog, investing some time in your content development plan is going to effectively shift the spotlight onto your freshly reinvented website. You can begin by answering some hard-hitting content marketing questions that dig into your current strategy.
Without further ado, here’s how you can approach content creation so that your company attracts all that coveted attention it deserves!
Have you established an organized editorial content calendar?
According to Content Marketing Institute, 44% of B2B marketers have a documented content strategy. More often than not, this strategy is broken down into an editorial content calendar – with each item in the calendar comprised of the topic, deadlines, the party responsible for its production, relevant keywords, publishing channels, etc. When building your own calendar, be sure to incorporate answers to the following questions:
- What types of posts are you developing? Your sparkling new site should exhibit a variety of blog posts – longer editorials, short bite-sized tips, curated content, repurposed offers, guest blogs, how to’s, how not to’s, and everything in between that your customers care about in relation to your industry. However, absolutely do NOT tout your own products or services in your posts. No one likes a bragger. And besides, a blog is not an ad; it’s a way to earn trust and build loyalty through educating and entertaining your leads and prospects.
- How often do you blog and how often CAN you blog? Blog regularly and blog often. By publishing your posts around the same time every week or month, you generate anticipation in your readers. Creating expectations helps develop a stronger following.
- Are you scheduling your posts to be published in your social media channels? Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ are all terrific ways to engage with leads. Social media allows your followers to share your blog posts and interact with your brand. Ultimately, this dually increases traffic to your website, as members of their social network are likely to trust these evangelists more than a business with which they are unfamiliar.
- What special events and holidays can be incorporated? Tis the season! When drafting your schedule, pick out holidays and public events that attract attention and tie them to your posts’ themes. These posts typically receive high view counts. Similarly, take advantage of hot topics in the news. Relevant and timely stories prompt readership.
- What else can you include in your Content Calendar? The sky’s the limit! Tweets, third-party posts, new offers, white papers, case studies, video, infographics, newsletters – you name it. Whatever the content your organization wants to show the world, hold yourself accountable for its progress with a shared company content calendar.
What are your current blogging practices?
Blogging certainly still stands among the most important elements of content creation. A consistent blogging presence not only improves SEO and rankings, but it’s an excellent way to communicate with new fans and followers! In fact, HubSpot tells us that B2B companies that blog get 67% more leads per month than those that don’t. Here’s what you should consider when evaluating your blogging practices during a website redesign:
- What types of content are your target buyers looking for? Give your target buyers a little inspiration. Whether it’s an answer to a question, a solution to a problem or just a good laugh, if they see that piece of content they’ve been desperately searching for on your site, you could be one step closer to closing another customer in the long run.
- Do you outsource blogging to a marketing specialist or freelance content writers? We know how much time content creation takes. Sometimes, you simply can’t do it alone! If you’re choosing to outsource, just be sure the writers understand your company and industry and they share your unique values. Communication is crucial.
- Can you set up a guest blogging partnership? Invite other industry experts to write guest posts for you. Utilize that network of yours! When pitching them the benefits of doing so, be confident. Guest bloggers gain exposure beyond their normal readership, and what’s more, they generate inbound links back to their own websites.
- Can you curate content to help your audience locate information? Blog posts containing collections of content about the same topic of interest can save your readers a lot of time! But to really add value to these types of posts, serve up your own opinion and insight against what someone else has voiced in his or her article.
- Are there offers or old content that can be repurposed? There has GOT to be a piece of sad, old content sitting around just waiting to be recycled into an updated post with a new twist. Repackaging information is one of the quickest ways to generate content when you’re suffering from writer’s block! Similarly if you dissect your company’s written offers, you’ll find that white papers, eBooks, and case studies are filled to the brim with juicy posts.
- How effective is your content marketing? If you need help answering this question, one easy way to find out is by downloading our Content Marketing Grader™. With this assessment tool, you’ll understand how your current content marketing excels, and where there are other opportunities to improve.
Blogging and social media posting are important ways to entice visitors and generate leads, but these methods are most effective when your content strategy is ongoing and consistent. Developing a content calendar to hold your team accountable will keep your crew on track! As always, knowing your audience is crucial. Figure out what they truly want or need and transform this assessment into valuable, useful and entertaining content.