How to blend SEO with your content marketing strategy
8th January 2021
A successful content marketing strategy has the perfect blend between good content and effective use of data. You need to be both creative and analytical to get the best results out of your content.
If you want to be more analytical with your content marketing, you can start with search engine optimization to improve your rankings and ultimately the number of visits to your website.
So what’s the role of SEO in your content marketing activity?
You’ve just written a great piece of content. Now you want to make sure that you get as many readers as possible. It’s time to use all your digital channels.
Social media and email marketing can make a great start to push your followers to your new piece of content. But what about the long-term wins?
This is where SEO comes in handy.
It’s important to optimize your content for search engines to ensure that more people discover your business through relevant searches.
These may be first-time visitors to your website who are simply visiting because you have the most relevant answers to their questions. In other words, it’s a great opportunity to turn them into loyal readers and customers.
There are many reasons to work on your search engine optimization as part of content marketing.
Increase web traffic: This is an obvious reason. Good optimization can bring more people to your website. Once you start understanding how they use search engines, it becomes easier to create content that will answer their relevant questions.
Make your content easy to find: If your business is still at an early stage, then SEO can be of great help. Optimization can make your content easier to find and thus, you are ready to warm up your new visitors.
Opportunity to beat your competition: not everyone is spending equal time on search engine optimization. Start with a competitor analysis. Is there a content gap that you can fill? This is a great chance of standing out with good content that is relevant to your audience and is also ranking high with the appropriate optimization.
Can lead to long-term wins: SEO is all about the long run. In most cases, it won’t lead to overnight success. But you may discover a great source of traffic once you start optimizing your content.
Creating content that ‘makes sense’ for your audience: Not everyone is ready to buy from you but this doesn’t mean that they don’t want to read your content. In fact, educating your audience can lead to future sales by keeping them engaged through valuable resources. SEO can help you understand what works best for your business and how to make the most of it. Read more about understanding and targeting your audience in the second installment of the ContentCal 6C’s series.
So how can you integrate SEO with your content marketing strategy?
You can add search engine optimization to different stages of your content marketing strategy. Here are a few ideas on how to get started...
An analytical mindset can help you improve your research. SEO can help you learn more about your content and your target audience.
Start with a content audit to analyze your existing content and what you can improve. Work on keyword research to explore content gaps that you can fill.
You can even perform a competitor analysis to learn from others on how to be better at SEO and your content marketing tactics.
After all, you're all competing for the same or similar keywords on search engines.
Use your research findings to review your planning process.
Work on your content calendar based on your content audit and keyword opportunities.
For example, if you’ve just discovered the perfect keyword group to promote your new product, you want to make sure you create the perfect content for this theme as soon as possible.
Make use of ContentCal’s Articles feature to plan and prepare all your long-form marketing content in one central Calendar.
Research and planning make content creation easier.
It’s time to implement all the ideas that you've come up with in the previous stages.
Content optimization for SEO can make your content rank higher in the search results. Pay attention to all the details that affect your rankings:
- Add your keywords to the title
- Include your focus keyword in the description and ideally in the headings
- Make sure that you're mentioning your keywords throughout the text but in a way that it still sounds natural
Ultimately, you want to create content that is good for your readers first, but also helps search engines determine your rankings.
SEO can still be relevant in the distribution process. For example, did you know that the number of times your content is shared affects your SEO rankings?
Social media may not be a direct ranking signal for SEO but content authority and social proof are still crucial in helping search engines determine the content that should rank higher.
In other words, the more shares and positive feedback you get, the better the chances to boost your SEO.
Moreover, you can also use your existing content to come up with new content ideas.
For example, an evergreen blog post that still gets good traffic over the last year can make a great infographic or video for social media. This way, you keep it fresh and still drive new traffic to your site.
For more information around content distribution, take a look at this blog that’s all about having a multi-channel strategy.
If you want to involve SEO in your content marketing strategy, start with what you have.
Look at your existing content and perform an audit to discover your strengths and weaknesses.
Edit your content to optimize it for search engines and update your content plan based on the keyword opportunities.
Make the most of social media to promote your content and build the social authority that will rank you higher in the search results.
Remember, it can take a while to boost your SEO but it’s definitely worth the investment as the results can have a long-lasting impact.