What is Content?

Without content, your television would have a blank screen … your radio would be nothing but dead air … your newspaper would display blank pages.  There would be no conversations, no signs, no plays, no jokes, no songs.  In other words, Content is everywhere!

The major challenge for marketers, who specialize in content creation, is to develop and publish the content that gets noticed … and sparks the desired emotion or action.  An even greater challenge might be that this has to be done consistently and over the channels that make sense for each client.

What is Content? image Content 300x173What is Content?Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, Pinterest and other social sites all invite URL links to blog posts or articles. Adding an interesting or amusing image will boost the popularity of almost any content. Sometimes, posting a cute picture or funny cartoon that gets shared can add “likes” or “followers” who will also see the serious and useful content that is subsequently posted.  While it is important to soft-pedal sales messages on social sites, providing useful information about a company and its products can shorten the cycle between first contact and the final sale.

A special note about Google Plus.  While this social network does not share the popularity of its social sisters, posting articles and blogs to this site seems to put SEO on steroids. Articles linked there are often ranked high for their relevant key words. 

What to write and where to publish

Website Content – Writing for the web requires fresh content that gets to the point, explains what is being offered, and includes a strong call to action.  The writing must speak to and interest viewers, but also has to have the keywords and search terms that search engines understand so that the pages rank high in search engine results. (Website links should be posted to social networks whenever new content is added.)

Blogs – Google and other search engines love new content. Blogging regularly is one of the best ways to provide that content. Well-titled and well-written blogs that use good key words help companies not only increase their credibility in the eyes of their customers, but also provide the content that gets displayed on Page 1 of Google results. (Again, links from every possible social site is a key. Also, adding an RSS feed will give people the opportunity to subscribe to a blog, assuring they see all new content.)

Magazine/Journal Articles – Online magazine editors are eager to find writers on almost any subject. While the pay may be small (or non-existent) being published is an important step towards getting found by customers – and improves credibility.  (Linking to social sites and even adding a link to the company blog can boost the popularity of the article.)

Email Marketing/Newsletters.  Blogs can be re-packaged for an E-newsletter mailed to a company’s database, helping widen the audience even more.

Do it yourself or hire a content marketer?

Social media/content marketers understand how to write content for humans AND search engines. They are also fully versed in the social sites. They know the rules, protocols and best practices for each site, including when and what to post and how to get the most “bang for the buck” for each piece of content.  They also monitor the sites, alerting the business owner about questions and comments that should be answered.  However, whether a business owner decides on a DIY approach or uses a marketing service, consistently publishing new and useful content over as many channels as possible will give a decided edge to any company in any industry.

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