Content writing is still king, in 2020. In fact, Google’s search engine algorithms have perfected the art of rewarding engaging content, which is both helpful and original. It has also gotten better at penalising bad copy. For every business wishing to rank highly on search queries for their industry, their services or products, the best way to “hack” SEO is by simply providing high-quality content, and then leveraging it the right way to spread it far and turn it into sales.
It’s true that good content can take a lot of time, yet there is a lot of powerful value in it, not least because you differentiate your business from others with your content, while providing a human voice for it. It also helps your brand get established as an expert in your field, while organically increasing the search ranking of your website, with the most popular keywords and key phrases.
Knowing what to write is crucial, too. Put yourself in the position of your audience (your ideal clients, as well as your most typical customers) and think about what they are considering when searching for a product or service in your field. By anticipating their questions and answering them in an engaging way on your content, the chances that they will land on your website vastly increases. Additionally, because they chose to click on your site, they will likely stay for longer.
Other benefits include increasing domain authority, which is gradually improved by your website’s content production. Thus, by creating all this content, not only will Google index you higher the more you create, but will also increase your brand’s reputation and customer relationship. This is because your customers will trust you more, as your company becomes more interesting, personable and likeable, with each new piece of good content you produce.
Below we will explore the Top 5 Tips for Successful Content Marketing – Updated for 2020:
Provide Helpful Content
Many content marketers will try to “hide” their best content behind paywalls and marketing funnels, to create sales. This makes intrinsic sense, as you don’t want to give everything away. However, do not let this train of thought go too far. It’s very important that the freely available content on your site is of high value, answering all the queries your customers are looking for.
Let’s say you’re a surfing shop. Customers will not only want to know about the types of surfboards and surf gear you sell, but also about surfing conditions in the area, the best types of fins, the ideal boards for each kind of break, ect. Just having that information available on your online shop is not enough. You must have a narrative to it, so as to make it extra valuable and engaging. Writing consistent blog posts (can be daily, weekly, monthly, and so on) can only help.
Use Reliable Data & Keyword Research
If your blog posts and premium content are all personal opinion then you can probably skip this, but if you’re using numbers, facts and statistics to back up what you’re saying, you can improve your post’s SEO by linking to the most reliable sources. Whether that is a scientific journal to quote studies, or linking to respected, unbiased news sites like The Guardian, make sure they’re of the highest possible quality, so that your own content gets rewarded (and not penalised) for it.
The perfect compliment to writing great content in 2020 is to enhance it with the most relevant keywords. If, for example, someone is searching for organic juice and your business sells that, it’s not a bad idea to identify what words they may be using to search for it. Target Keywords and phrases like ‘health drinks’, ‘organic juices’ and ‘where to find organic juice’ will be useful.
There are many ways to find the best keywords for your niche. Once you find these target keywords, you can sprinkle them on your content in a natural way. Meaning, don’t just randomly drop them anywhere. They should fit within the larger narrative of your post. Make sure to also not overdo it. It’s good practice to just focus on one of these target keywords, per content piece. It’s also recommended to focus on the long-tail keywords, in addition to the most popular ones.
Elevate your Brand’s Authentic Voice
Going into 2020, one of the most crucial elements currently evolving in marketing is to only have content reflecting your true brand. This is always true – and it’s why car companies continually try to convince you that their brand is both the safest, and coolest, one of all. However, brand authenticity is the key aspect here. So, if your company makes eco-friendly clothing and you talk about sustainability on your posts, you have to make sure there’s no plastic packaging involved.
In addition, by writing about what truly represents your brand, you can take away any corporate feel to your company – unless that’s what you’re going for. In most cases, including banks and law firms, every business can benefit from humanising their brand. You can do this by making consistent posts on your website which have a voice (each brand, like each person, is different). Instead of copying competitors you can differentiate yourself by using your brand’s point of view.
Write Long-form Content
With so much content out there, it makes sense to create short, to-the-point pieces that won’t get skimmed over by readers. Yes, there is less attention out there, but the truth is that many people find safe haven in the wilds of the internet by diving deeper into longer posts and pieces of content (this also applies to long-form videos, podcasts, etc). It doesn’t mean you should increase the length of every article you make either, as it will still have to be worthwhile for them.
Instead of only creating ‘bite-sized- content (which is still useful, in many cases), there are other reasons to focus on longer posts in 2020, such as:
- Going deeper into the subject of your choice
- Building further trust with your readers
- Showcasing your company’s personality
- Improving the SEO of your posts
- Retaining potential customers on your site
According to data compiled by blog platform Medium, many of its most successful articles take between 6 – 8 minutes to read, with around 1,600 words in total. Long-form content can easily assist in covering in great detail any topics you would like to come across as an authority. Although not all your posts should be long, it’s good advice in 2020 to create at least a few pieces per month which have more than 1,000 words in total. Your long-time fans will thank you.
Evaluate the Success of your Content & think Long-Term
After doing the research, creating a first draft, editing it, publishing your high-quality content, and remarketing it to visitors by tagging them afterwards, the next step is to check whether that piece was enjoyed by your readers or not. There are a number of tools that can help you do that. One of the most widely used ones is Google Analytics, which is able to trace your website’s progress, so that you can change your strategy moving forward, accordingly.
Other things you can do is to consider the long-term effects of your content strategy. For example, in 2020 it’s not just about featuring in the #1 position on Google, but also about standing out in general. One way to do this is by using visual ranking, or featured snippets. By writing more ‘conversational’, Q&A-style content, there’s a bigger chance you’ll be featured on said snippets. As long as you’re delivering a high-value experience, your readers will be happy.
Finally, make sure to refer, and link back to, your website on a consistent basis. You can also integrate your main pages with your blog, if they aren’t already. That way, your audience can find everything that you’re offering there, without having to go somewhere else – by showing you have both the knowledge and the business. And don’t forget about social media. Make sure you share your very best content on all your platforms, so that your followers can then share it too.