You may say that excellent content sells itself, but I say that well-written words are just not useful enough, especially if your client is selling non-tech, non-business and non-entertainment based products. One pagers of content distributed on e-zine and review sites are a shot in the dark for high volumes of traffic. Perhaps you can think of a viral idea that`s going to make a local hockey team fly out of the water. But can you think of ideas for window glazing, au pair services, locksmiths and Czech translation services, while you`re at? You may say I`m dreaming, and to that I say: you`re just asleep.
I think social media have great potential for spreading content. I also think that the net`s hinges are creaking and groaning under the strain of sub-standard and ill-placed content that social media add to the heap each day. And it`s harder and harder to spin gold from hay or get a simple piece up on Digg`s front page because of it. In addition, social media class their submitters and audiences, and operate on a trust factor, often giving preference to names that are well known and have established their credit via intelligent commenting and frequent interaction with other submitters. It`s a boys` club, if you like. They`re playing a game, interacting with an organism, following playground rules. This is not a marketing endeavour. Ever seen an SEO-based article up on Digg?
Where does this leave marketers and content writers? Take heart. As Cameron Olthuis from Search Engine Land, says, the keyword here is “resource”. Let`s create intelligent content that really addresses the most important sector of our clients` interests. Do they specialise in something that is an unsung topic on the net? Let`s write a 10-page guide that really digs into the ins and outs of the subject, rather than submitting 20 fluffy and disconnected articles that garner minimal links.
Let`s find a subject that is popular in the news and also applies directly to the client. Take alternative power. Create a practical rundown of all the inventions that people can use in their homes and offices, including costs, practicality, environmental effects and more. Let`s make graphs and back ourselves up with in-depth research. Let`s give the people searching on this topic more than just a 4 paragraph article about growing organic tomatoes. Who says content distribution is hypodermic? Include contact details for reader replies, or get the client to start a discussion thread in response to your guide. What about a mini site?
Let`s go a step further and do a cursory keyword dig on the subject matter, and do a light keyword insertion, so that people searching for information will be able to find this credible and useful resource. This is better and far more linkworthy than triple the amount of single pages on unconnected subjects – even if they`re well written. It`s time for a linkbait renaissance, are you with me?