Content marketing is a hot topic, and for good reason.
Content is the lifeblood of most websites, blogs, video channels and photo apps.
A constant flow of new and compelling content gets visitors hooked and keeps them engaged.
What is content? Often it’s an article or a post. But it could be a review or a buying guide. It could be a video, a photo essay or a slideshow. Or an ongoing series of photos on Instagram or Pinterest. Or a podcast or a vlog. It could be a multimedia mashup.
Add together all those new pages, posts, videos, photos and podcasts – plus all the tweets and Facebook updates that are created – and you have hundreds of millions of new pieces of content uploaded each day.
Over 60 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every MINUTE.
On Facebook 510 comments are posted, 293,000 statuses are updated, and 136,000 photos are uploaded- every MINUTE.
Meanwhile, over 2 million new blog posts are published every single day.
The trouble is, most of that content is created blindly, with no real plan or purpose.
Granted, a lot of the social media activity in particular is just personal stuff, sharing photos of puppies, vacations and so on.
But there is still a massive amount of content created each day that ultimately has a commercial purpose.
And like I said, way too much of that content is created without a plan or any clearly defined purpose. It’s created simply because, “Hey, we need more content. Now!”
Many web teams are under pressure to upload a certain volume of new content every week or day.
This puts pressure on writers, particularly when it comes to creating new pages and posts. Some of those writers are salaried, but more and more of them are freelancers.
A lot of the time the briefs they are given are vague. “Hey, we need a piece on Vitamin D”. Or, “Give us something on how European central banks are turning to negative interest rates”. Or, “All the other tech blogs are writing about the problems at Twitter. We need something on that too.”
Volume of content seems to trump quality of content, almost every time. And quality isn’t just about how “good” the page or post may be, it’s also about whether or not that new content is “on purpose”.
Which brings us to the topic of content optimization.
There is already one content classification where optimization is pretty well understood. And that’s when we optimize a page for the search engines. That’s search engine optimization.
But content can be optimized to achieve other ends too.
– Optimize content for maximum shareability through social media
– Optimize content to presell, with links to a product or sales page
– Optimize content to build authority and thought leadership
– Optimize content to attract inbound links from high-quality websites
– Optimize content to generate qualified leads
– Optimize content to encourage user engagement
That’s seven ways to optimize your content. There are others too.
For example, you can add a whole new layer across all classification when you work to optimize your content for seasons and holidays. Pretty much every product and service is seasonal to some degree.
When you choose a purpose for a new page or screen of content, and optimize the content to achieve that purpose, you’re suddenly being a whole lot more professional in your approach to content creation.
Job one is still to aim for quality.
Job two is to decide on the primary purpose of each piece of content you create.
Job three is to then optimize every page or screen you create.
Web content optimization lies at the heart of maximizing impact and revenues.
It’s a pity so few companies practice it.
NOTE: If you are serious about writing high quality, optimized content for your website or websites, check out my course, Web Content Optimization.
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