A Guide to Writing Content that Converts

There is so much content available that as a brand it is about writing content that converts your target audience.  It is about giving quality information and establishing a relationship.  In the end, it is about standing apart from the competition.

If your web pages or landing pages are not producing sales, then there is a strong chance that your content is not giving them what they want.  Not only does it need to grab their attention, but it needs to answer questions.  The content needs to help with their pain points, give solutions.

Step One: Speaking to Your Visitors

Content needs to speak to a reader’s concerns.  This is the first step into writing content that converts.  Many websites have content on their accomplishments and awards, and how efficient they are.  While this sets up a brand as a leader, it does not speak to how they have a solution for them.

Effective website content is about writing what matters to the visitor.  How your brand has the solution.

Step Two: Creating Headlines

The first thing someone sees is the headline on an article or at the top of the website.  The headline needs to tell the visitor what the page is about and intriguing them to read more.  The headline also needs to be optimized for search engines, so don’t forget to use your keywords.

A headline that guarantees the readers a benefit will be more enticing.  The concentration of a user is short, so it has to grab their attention.

Step Three: Clear Messaging

Is your message clear and valuable?  If the audience is unclear of the message or it lacks value, then you will not see conversions.  Content that is short and concise is more clear and valuable.  They do not want to read lengthy overwritten content.

Reading content should not be confusing it should be simple.  Here are some great ways to break up the content.

  • Use short paragraphs. Breaking up content into bite-size pieces makes it clear and easy to read.
  • Subheaders are the best way for a visitor to seek out the pieces of the content that appeal to them.
  • Use bullet points to create a list. Bullet points stand out from the rest and make it easy to read.
  • Another option for bullet points is a numbered checklist. This is a great way to break the content up and a reader can follow along.

Step Four: Give What You Promise

The content must fulfill the promise of what is given in the headline or title.  If your content is not giving what you promised then no matter how amazing steps 1-3 is it will never convert.  It is about creating trust and credibility with each visitor.  If your content does not give them what you promised, then why would they trust your product or service to do that.

Step 5: Call To Actions

Without a call to action, your content is not being effective.  Call to action tells the reader what to do next, it can be as simple as clicking a link or entering contact information to get a guide or checklist for more knowledge.

Always Remember

Remember that the content that converts the most is the ones that guide your visitor through a journey.  The more they read and engage the more information they are getting, which ultimately leads them to buy.  If you are still unsure about content that converts, our team can give you specifics about your website and ways to improve it.  Schedule a consultation today!

Improve SEO and Marketing with Press Releases

As a digital marketing agency, we often get asked if press releases are still an effective tool for marketing.  The answer is yes.  They are a way to generate awareness about a brand, a product, a service, and they can help improve SEO ratings.  The key to success is to leverage the press release in the right way.

Creating a Press Release

Press releases add to the possibility of your brand’s news appearing at the top search results for keywords that your target audience is using.  However, you must use keyword and press release best practices in order to make the strategy effective and not labeled as spam.

It Must Add Value

Whether you are writing a press release about an event, a product, or a service, it needs to be newsworthy.  The content must add value, it should show how it helps the community, or advances technology, or a new free feature, or maybe a charity angle.  It needs to feature the importance of what makes this so interesting or newsworthy.  Do not just state facts and use bullet points to sell.

Who Is Your Audience?

When writing a press release, you need to use the same content rules as writing a blog or any other informational article.  Who is your target audience?  The content needs to appeal to your target audience and journalists for the story to get picked up.

Create a headline that is enticing and intriguing while making sure your keyword is in it.  The headline must be written for people and not search engines.  This means it needs to read well, and not just terms clumped together.

A press release should answer who, what, where, why, when, and how.  The content needs to be clear and concise and avoid keyword stuffing.

Most press releases are about 400 to 500 words.  The title and the contact information at the bottom count.  The other trick to a good story is to write the press release in the third person.  This is key, especially if it does get picked up it is easily written for a journalist to copy and paste or the wire to use as is.

SEO in the Press Release

There are several SEO practices that will help your search rankings.  However, there are also SEO don’ts that you need to be aware of as well.

Hyperlinks are a great way to emphasize keywords and have readers go back to your website.  However, the hyperlink must be a genuine fit for the content.  Also, you do not want to add a ton of hyperlinks for every keyword in the article.  Stick to adding just a couple, it is better to use some caution, nothing can hurt more than being penalized by Google.

When using keywords utilize both short-tail and long-tail keywords.   Short tail keywords are broad phrases that contain 2 to 3 words and they capture a larger audience.  However, long-tail keywords are more precise phrases that will produce targeted results.  This will get your brand more quality leads.

Leverage Your Press Releases

Press Releases also offer the opportunity to share on social media and use in other marketing strategies.  When a press release is published, it is a great way to announce to your clients and potential clients in an email marketing campaign.  Press Releases offer SEO and other opportunities to gain brand awareness, credibility, and authority in an industry.  While the strategies within a press release are different, it still has a positive impact on your marketing tactics.

Guide to Improving Your Websites SEO Rating

Creating quality content that people want to read will increase organic traffic and engage visitors.  By doing this, it will guide search engines to help understand what your website and business are all about.  If the content gives value, then visitors will stay longer on your page. When thinking about SEO strategies this is actually the first place to start, then you work on tying in keywords, links, title tags, meta descriptions, alt image text, and more.  If you do not have quality content, then the rest is not going to help you convert visitors into customers.

Keywords

Keywords are so important, not only is it about using the best ones, it is about where your keywords should be and how many times you use them.

The first step in keywords is doing your research. You want to find both short and long-tail keywords that are specific to your product or service.  Broad keywords will get you a lot of traffic, however, it will not be quality traffic.

Keywords need to be in the first 100 words of your content and evenly dispersed throughout the page.  You will want Headlines (H2, H3, H4) that have your keywords in them.

On-Page Optimization

On-page optimization is an important part of SEO, however, it often gets overlooked.  These components include the title tag, meta description, alt image text.

A page title or title tag should be concise and clear.  It will include your keyword and can only be between 50 and 60 characters.

The meta description is a little longer and will have more information to entice someone to want to click on your page.  It should include your keyword and relevant keywords within 150-170 characters.

The URL is 3 to 5 words long and is a clear description of what the page is about.  Not only do you want users to know what the page is about, but you also want search engines to understand.

Alt image text is the text that corresponds to an image.  The text should have your keywords in it.  However, make sure that the picture is of what your keywords are.  If you are just adding keywords for a better rating, the search engines will know.

Technical Problems Affect SEO

Technical problems do affect SEO rankings, so check on your website regularly with an audit.  Broken links are one of the most common errors seen within websites.

User Experience

The better the user experience, the longer a visitor stays, which means the better SEO ranking your site gets.  Not only does it help, but it also improves your bounce rate.  Bounce rates negatively impact your site’s performance.

Not only is site navigation important, but your page loading time is essential.  If a visitor has to wait a long time for a page to load, they get bored and will look elsewhere.

Is your site set up for mobile viewing?  Make sure that your site looks good on phones, tablets, and iPads.

Backlinks

Backlinks give your site credibility and when search engines see that your site is getting linked to high-authority sites, it improves your ranking immensely.  They assume that your site contains trustworthy information.

However, links that come from spam websites will bring down your credibility score.  So, it is important to ensure that your backlinks are coming from quality sites.

Digital Marketing Strategies

The algorithm and policy change frequently so it can affect your SEO rating both for the better and for the worse.  However, the strategies mentioned above are important and will always be a part of the ranking status.  If you are unsure why your site is still not ranking, our team at MaxAudience can help.  We review sites and understand SEO and ways to improve websites and increasing conversions.

Turn One Piece of Content into Several Pieces for SEO

Part of any digital marketing strategy is to create quality content.  Content marketing gets your brand better SEO ranking, and it gives clients and potential clients’ information.  This information keeps bringing them back to you.  However, it can seem daunting to always be creating fresh new content.  Repurposing content is a way to spend less time researching and more time expanding on an idea.

What is Repurposed Content for SEO?

Repurposed content is taking one valuable piece of content and creating new content out of it.  The trick is to not keep rewriting it for different avenues.  It is about taking the ideas out of it and expanding on them and creating complementary content that all works together.

For a sales funnel strategy, it is perfect.  Your target audience reads the first piece of content and they are interested in learning more, so they click on your white paper.  They push your readers deeper into the sales funnel.  You are giving them what they need.  Here is how to create a lot of great content.

Start with A Blog Post

Think about what your target audience needs help with.  What is their pain point and how can you help them solve it.  The blog post will cover the big picture of the problem and the solution.  Create a topic that your customers will enjoy learning about and that there are multiple steps within the strategy.  Blogs are perfect for creating awareness and the first step in the sales funnel.

Research keywords so that thru organic search your target audience will find your blog and your brand.

Create a White Paper

The purpose of a white paper is to give information that a certain solution is best for the problem.  It can influence the decision-making process of current and prospective customers.  It educates readers and helps them solve an issue.

When creating the white paper this is where you can get into the specifics.  Take a section of the blog and give more details.  It is clearly focused content that is enticing to read.  In order to download the white paper for free, it is best to collect an email address or contact information of the prospective customer.  This will give you information for follow-up while they are getting more information.

Create Social Media Content Marketing

Promote your blog by creating social media content marketing pieces that talk about key ideas in the post.  Give snippets of info and a call to action to learn more.  Be ready to engage with followers as they may ask questions or comment on the message.  Social media is a great way to target your audience and help them find your brand.

While creating posts about the white paper is a great way to get visibility, another option is to use social media ads, to gain trackable clicks and conversions.  Facebook ads let you target who will see the ad so it gets to your target audience and they get the information they are looking for.

Produce Video Clips

Videos are important to your outreach and campaign efforts, especially your social strategy.  It increases engagement, educates, and you reach your audience with a new medium.

Record a quick video that is on topic from the blog.  Give a story or an example that makes the blog post come to life.  Not only does it give the brand a face, but it will also drive your audience to your content.

Videos are another way to get a better search engine ranking and improve SEO.  Create videos according to each platform guideline.

Repurpose not Duplicate

The most effective way to create a successful content marketing strategy is to share thought-provoking engaging content.  Repurposing content is not duplicating the same content, however, it can help keep your content fresh and easier to create.

Multiple pieces of content on topics that each stand out on their own.  Think of it as one big asset worth repurposing, multiple small articles that all contribute valuable information towards one core topic.

If you need help with your content marketing, SEO, and social media we know how to implement all into a powerful digital marketing campaign.

Drive Organic Customers with SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can sound overwhelming and puzzling.  SEO is the organic way to move your site up in search engine rankings.  Once you get the basics down it isn’t that complicated, it takes some research time and looking at analytics.

Google Indexing

The first place to start is to make sure that Google has your website indexed.  What this means is that Google is aware of your website.  This does not make that your site will pop up immediately or that it will start once it’s indexed.  However, if it is not indexed then there is no chance of ever ranking for anything no matter how much SEO work you put in.

Check Your Website

When looking to improve your SEO, you will want to evaluate your website.

  • Broken Pages and Links – Not only are broken links and pages unsuccessful to give a good impression, but it also is not good for SEO.
  • Meta Descriptions and Title – These entice search engine users to click-through to your site. Do not exceed the length.
  • Image Alt Tags – If you have images on your website or within your blog content, you want to include your keyword in the image alt tag.
  • Headlines (H1, H2, H3, H4) – These headings help users and search engines read and understand the text. They are important in a website as well as in blog articles to get ranked higher.  It also breaks up content, so it is easier to read.
  • Content – Is the content written well? Does it contain keywords, but in a readable way?  The length not too long or too short?
  • Social – Is your social media linked? Search engines note social media shares as quality content that people want.  This includes sharing blog articles.

Drive Qualified Users Through Long-Tail Keyword Search

Successful SEO campaigns focus on keywords.  Keywords are the search terms that define what your content is about.  In terms of SEO, they are the words and phrases that searchers enter into search engines, also called “search queries”.

Longtail keywords are the best tool for attracting relevant website visitors to your site.  They are targeted to a specific problem, and attainable to the language that people use to search.  Long-tail keywords are typically 3 to 4 words long; they are also less competitive and easier to rank for on the first page of results.

The best digital marketing SEO strategy is using a combination of long and short-tail keywords.

Is your Content Polished?

Content marketing is a huge piece of digital marketing strategy.  The more quality content pieces that you have on your website, the higher the ranking.  The more engaging your content is, the longer users will stay on your website.  It is important when creating content for your site to use the SEO keywords.

Google looks at the content on a website to help understand whether that website or web page is good for a particular query.  If there is little or no content then it will not do that.  However, on the flip side, if there is too much content it will have the same effect.

Keyword stuffing is a practice that you do not want to put into place.  That is when the keywords are stuffed within the content so that it does not read intellectually.  It is a common practice and the search engine algorithms now take notice of it and will penalize you for it.

Incorporating a Content Marketing Strategy

What is Content Marketing?

A strategic content marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience.  Ultimately, it is to drive profitable customer action.

It is more than pitching your products or services; you are providing truly relevant and useful content to your prospects and customers to help them solve their issues.

Marketing is Impossible Without Content

Quality content is part of all forms of marketing.

  • Social media marketing – Content marketing strategy comes before your social media strategy.
  • Website – The content on their help with search engine rankings
  • SEO – Search engines rate businesses that publish quality, consistent content.
  • PPC – You need great content behind it.
  • Inbound marketing – Content is key to driving inbound traffic and leads.

Who is Reading Your Content?

The first step when creating a content marketing strategy is who is your target audience.  You want to create content based on who you are engaging with.  If you have several targets, then it is about a strategy that has a variety of content and channels, to deliver the best message to each audience.

Your service or product solves a problem that your audience has.  Your content needs to deliver information that addresses these problems.  It also must explain how your brand is different, and in some cases, it is more the tone of the content and the delivery than what is actually written.

Effective Content

Effective content should be clearly written, emotionally engaging, and include SEO best practices like keyword research and integration.  You want to write content that people want to read.  Great content suits your brand persona, educates your audience on your products and services, while creating avenues for future engagement.

Consistency is an important part as well.  You want your content at the top of the search engine algorithms and ensure that your message is getting delivered regularly.  Educational content can help answer questions and prove to be a helpful resource, increasing your brand’s reputation.

Types of Content Marketing

There are several types of content marketing that all work well together and should be a part of your overall strategy.  It is best to start with a few and then add other avenues to them.  You want to start and be consistent.  We suggest master a few and then add others, especially if you are doing your content marketing yourself or in house.

  • Blogs – Blogs provide valuable content for your audience that makes them want to read and learn. It is best when your audience wants to share the posts with others.
  • Case Studies – Case studies are the perfect opportunity to tell the story of a customer and the problem they were having and how your brand helped them solve it. It gives quantifiable proof.
  • Ebooks / Whitepapers – A lead generation tool that a customer can download after submitting a lead form with their contact information. They are part of the inbound marketing process.
  • Social Media – Posting on social media is pivotal to amplifying your brand and delivering content to your customers where you know they spend their time. Which social network will depend on your audience.
  • Videos – Videos are highly engaging and capture people’s attention. It is more likely to get shared on social media.
  • Podcasts – Podcasts are an alternative for those who don’t have time to read, but still want content. They are a verbal piece of content marketing.

Using Google+ to Help With Your SEO

This is a topic that has been discussed a great deal online, since Google Plus made its debut. There is a good reason for that. Google+ can be a very powerful media marketing tool and one that shouldn’t be overlooked by companies that are trying to grow their online reputation. If you are operating an online retail website, or trying to grow your web exposure, you should definitely consider a business profile on this social media platform.

It makes sense that the Google search engines would be partial to Google plus activity and it has been proven that they do. Combining efforts on your website with Google+ posts, YouTube business videos, and a Google Local account can go a long way toward enhancing your online standing, and can improve how your company appears when showing up in search results.

This platform is also very business friendly, as it turns out. There are many features that make business-to-consumer communication very viable and attractive. With the Google Local account established, a business can appear in the local pack when relevant search terms are entered, which further boosts brand recognition, and reviews on the Google+ page add to business credibility while improving SEO standing.

There are really a few things that you should do, if you are not yet using Google+ to its full potential.

First, create a business page and use it. Millions upon millions of people have a Google+ account, but a large percentage rarely, if ever, use it. It’s not enough to create the account, you need to keep it active.

Second, be sure that you have verified your Google+ Local Listing.

Third, encourage others with calls to action and +1 buttons. Make sure you are using these buttons on your website, and use the CTAs to build a list of reviews on Google Plus from past customers.

Finally, be sure that your posts on Google Plus are keyword-rich. The more optimized your posts are, the better they will help your overall SEO.

Time to Up Your Mobile Marketing Efforts

If you are working in the retail realm, and hoping to improve your bottom line in the years to come, then you better seriously consider your approach to mobile. If it wasn’t clear already, then certainly the 2014 holiday season made it very apparent that mobile is now the preferred method for shopping. Not only are consumers researching products on the go, they are actually making the purchases directly from their smartphones and tablets. This mobile shopping phenomenon is so strong that even those standing in brick-and-mortar stores will opt to make the online purchase via cell, if they believe they can get a better price or quality online. That means that your consumers could be purchasing from the competition while standing in your aisles. It is important, therefore, to make your website and your products as attractive as possible when reaching out to potential customers.

Help Them Find You In the same way that you use keywords to market your content, you can use them to increase the chances that consumers find your website when searching for local products. This requires that you choose locally relevant keywords, however. Know what your customer is looking for and how he or she would search for it, and you can wisely select the keywords for your mobile marketing campaigns.

Entice Them to Opt-In One of the biggest reasons that consumers give for their online shopping behavior is a belief that online prices are lower than in the store. They are also enticed by special offers and sales. Put this mentality to work for you. Offer a special sale to those who are willing to opt-in for receiving future promo materials.

Cater to Screen Size Many of the ‘Make Your Own Website’ services boast that their templates are mobile friendly, but before you buy into the hype be sure that you know how your company will appear on the smallest screens. Consumers aren’t going to linger if they are unable to comfortably navigate your mobile site.