Caring about this could positively influence your ROI
Before digging into how, let’s talk about why this is such an important topic.
- Put simply, it’s a way to make your marketing budget stretch further, which given the current economic climate, is undoubtedly in everyone’s interest, let alone a budget holder’s.
- It’s a way to protect your content. As Elizabeth, one of our Content Strategy Consultants, rightly points out, ‘Marketers should care about their content’s purpose to not only make sure it’s working harder from an ROI perspective but also to protect it against upcoming algorithm updates’. Indeed, as we all know, Google will continue to roll out updates, and your content needs to keep up with them to last the test of time. As we’ve seen from the recent helpful content update (roll-out complete as of 9th September 2022), if you’re creating content only to satisfy search engines, you’ll likely notice the performance of those pages dwindling.
- Without getting too far into the detail, it’s a way to showcase the value of cross-team collaboration, specifically between Digital PR and Content Strategy teams, which, despite primarily serving different SEO pillars, i.e. off-site and on-site, are, or rather should be, closely connected to enhance your performance.
As we can see, there is a lot of potential benefit at stake here, so let’s get right into how we can start working your content harder.
Your strategy should be holistic
When it comes to SEO, your performance will heavily correlate to how strong your on-site, off-site and technical SEO is. At Builtvisible, we always recommend taking a holistic approach to SEO. In practice, this means making sure on-site, off-site and technical SEO are aptly catered to. If one of those areas is under-served, it will anchor your performance regardless if other areas are water-tight. This doesn’t mean that everything needs the same level of support. Activity can be dialled up or down according to the need and opportunity, but as long as nothing’s left behind, your performance should be going up into the right.
With this holistic principle in mind, we strongly believe in our Content Strategy and Digital PR teams – in fact, all teams – working closely together. At Builtvisible, those two specialist teams actually evolved from an overarching content team half a decade ago; this has provided our Digital PR specialists and Content Strategists with the unique advantage of understanding both on-site and off-site SEO and being able to apply those learnings to our deliverables.
We continue to cultivate a close-knit working relationship with those teams by having an ‘open house’ approach to the projects and work we deliver on either side. In practice, this means:
- Holding project kick-offs with each team’s lead so everyone knows the objectives and the potential for cross-team opportunity is flagged from the get-go.
- Having an open communication channel so that either specialist can consult with one another on a given project as it progresses.
- Sharing all key deliverables in an internal delivery session to cement alignment.
- Holding cross-team ideations to ensure ideas are built for on-site and off-site activity.
We find these four simple steps allow us to unearth all cross-team opportunities, and all for the purpose of making sure the content deliverable, whether it be a Digital PR or Content Strategy piece, is serving as many purposes as it should.
Your content doesn’t have to be limited to serve one purpose
When evaluating content marketing efforts for your website, it’s often easy to focus on keywords, internal links and all of those other important signals to show Google that you’re an authoritative resource in your sector. Whilst all of this is important, we sometimes forget to consider the user and how they will access that information. Looking at content from a top-level perspective can highlight opportunities to increase the value to not only the website, but the audience you’re targeting.
- Is the content topic providing useful information to the user?
- Is the content itself optimised to target SEO opportunities?
The above two points are incredibly important when building and implementing any content strategy. But why stop there? What else can we add to that resource so that it’s useful and outreachable? By identifying key components for your content that can be used as part of your ongoing Digital PR strategy, you’re then able to elevate what you provide on your website. This in turn, improves the piece’s quality and can increase the ROI. Of course, this may not be possible in all cases, but it should be considered and assessed continuously. By making an SEO-worthy content piece optimal for Digital PR efforts, you can increase your audience reach. An increase in citations can lead to an increase in traffic and visibility, whilst the increase in inbound links will help with the performance of the page and wider website.
Let’s take a look at an example of how we’ve approached seeing what more content is capable of with one of our strategic partners.
Supercharging Motors’ content investment
Having built out an editorial strategy for news.motors.co.uk, we were able to build an extensive list of content opportunities for the website. When prioritising opportunities, we look at several key metrics.
- Potential keyword search volume for that content topic
- The client’s current performance within that topic
- The competitive landscape for that topic
When analysing the competitive landscape, we’re able to identify the number of inbound links to competing content, which we can then compare to the client’s website. This acts as a great indicator of whether the content has an opportunity for Digital PR efforts. By identifying content opportunities that will better perform with Digital PR efforts in the early stages of a strategy, we can use this information to outline the client’s need for link-building and Digital PR.
On this client specifically, we also identified a need to increase brand awareness. Whilst there is an abundance of content topics that could target users within the awareness stage of their user journey, the success and ROI for those content pieces will depend on the following;
- Will the proposed content rank for target keywords?
- Will the content get enough visibility that it actually builds awareness of the brand?
By collaborating on Content and Digital PR efforts, we’re able to ensure those key KPIs are met.
The potential for your content (existing or future) to serve more than one purpose will almost certainly be there, you simply need to explore it first.
Elevate your content with content distribution
Having put effort into exploring, defining and enhancing your content’s purpose, the final piece of the puzzle is ensuring it gets in front of the right audience. This is facilitated by content distribution.
The exciting thing about content distribution is that there is a whole range of distribution methods and formats at your disposal, and you can lean into multiple different channels.
From the more traditional “SEOy” methods of outreaching your content to publications for coverage and links without the exchange of money (earned channels) to leveraging your owned channels, such as pushing out content on social or through email marketing, right the way through to enlisting upon paid distribution methods, for example, native advertising campaigns.
(*Not an exhaustive list)
Of course, different content will need different distribution tactics, but the point is there are lots of ways to ensure it’s seen by the right people and ultimately achieves the agreed objectives.
If you’re a marketer, this should be your next step
Marketers among you, you’ll want your budget to get more bang for its buck; frankly, collaborating with Content Strategists and Digital PRs is a route to getting that. As a first step, we recommend you audit the content you have in the pipe and ascertain if it’s reaching its full potential. If there’s scope to enhance that content so that it’s not just being used to build links or for ranking purposes, then that’s an ideal scenario. The next step will involve working with your content creators to strategically make those tweaks to breathe life into those all-important other purposes, and before you know it, those resources will be working harder and delivering a better ROI.
If you don’t have the in-house resource to carry out such a content audit, or want to find out more about how you too can increase the ROI of an existing or upcoming piece and distribute it accordingly, get in touch. Our specialists in Content Strategy and Digital PR are well-versed in this activity and passionate about making sure good content gets the air-time and exposure it deserves.