Five tips for keeping momentum when creating content for the web

Internet marketing is a powerful direct communication channel that releases businesses from the constraints of traditional promotion. A company’s profits will increase dramatically when it regularly designs high quality content for the web that engages its audience.

You can choose the subject matter, length and style of online content, but making a commitment to regular posting means providing a steady supply of topics with a focus on SEO, to secure high page rankings.

Here are five ways to keep your content ideas flowing beyond the rush of early inspiration:

1. Set editorial guidelines

Create an editorial guide as the foundation of your content for the web.

First establish the purpose for publishing online content. Setting a firm reason for blogging focuses your theme, making it easier to generate fresh topics over time.

Your goal might be to generate sales leads, reposition your brand, demonstrate a distinction from your competition, maintain customer loyalty, or become an industry thought leader.

Another advantage of using content guide is that multiple contributors can write blog editorial without changing your brand’s online voice.

Next, determine the perspective that will best engage your ideal audience, by linking your potential customers’ most pressing challenges to your brand’s desired image.

To do this, consider your market position and any relevant issues, such as environmental or social concerns and the tone of media coverage of your brand. You may decide to attract readers who enjoy technical detail; those who use blogs as industry news aggregators; or buyers that enjoy opinion-style content.

2. Targeting SEO

After confirming your blog’s purpose and style, choose a repertoire of SEO keywords for all future content. These words and phrases should be the proven search terms that search engine uses can trust and that will improve page rankings.

For example, a local handyman service specialising in one-person jobs could post blogs on a vast number of individual topics, each based around the keywords that target people looking for basic household repairs.

Working towards SEO with set keywords is crucial to internet marketing success. But as well as determining the right phrases, you must consider Google’s broad priority for page rankings, which is to deliver its users the highest quality websites.

In general, higher page rankings are given for content based on good editorial principles, rather than just keyword repetition. Google claims that among its overall SEO rules, content for the web should provide

  • trusted material with good editing
  • expert information, rather than shallow overviews
  • enough credibility to attract online payments
  • balanced reporting of all sides of a story
  • content of a standard that is likely to be shared or bookmarked
  • an original commentary style or tone
  • layouts uncluttered by too many distracting ads

3. Sources of content marketing ideas

The people ultimately responsible for content should be ambassadors for the internet marketing, with the role of encouraging subject matter from across departments and regions.

Use internal and external networks to source content for the web. In-house, anyone with responsibility for customer service is a source of ideas. The more participants in content brainstorming, the greater topic variety will be produced.

Your brand credibility can benefit from blog updates that highlight perspectives from those other than official business spokespeople.

Invite customer support, service and IT staff to suggest web topics from their daily interactions. Customer problems that have been solved with real-life trouble-shooting are sources of quality content. Written with editorial care, these relatable stories leave your brand in the background.

Actively promote your blog to potential outside contributors. Key suppliers, customers, partners and industry leaders are good sources of content, as guest writers. Share links between applicable contributor sites, for mutual SEO advantages.

Monitor social media trends and use them to  trigger blog content in the form of commentary where there is already wide engagement. Also use breaking news headlines from mainstream media or trade news to your advantage, as sources of newsjacking.

4. Create an editorial calendar

A conspicuous ‘read our blog’ tab signals that you are serious about online communication, so nominate a blogging frequency and stick to it. Whether you post daily, monthly or weekly, content marketers earn respect for their publishing regularity, as much as for subject matter.

The more frequently you publish, the more traffic, customer interaction and sales you attract. And your search engine ranking will improve…

Resources will determine output, so be realistic about your commitment and remember it looks better to steadily increase output than reduce it because you run out of steam.

A simple editorial calendar keeps content flowing and builds trust in your brand. For example, weekly postings of four per month might have this structure:

      • Week 1: case study – how our brand solved a customer’s problem
      • Week 2: commentary on trending news – how our brand links to a current story
      • Week 3: product review or launch – our brand moving with the times
      • Week 4: guest contributor on an industry trend – our brand position in the market

With regular brainstorming, in-house  ‘newshounds’ and a rotation of authors in place, it’s easy to set an advance editorial calendar, without placing undue deadline stress on your internet marketing department.

5. Don’t avoid controversy

Keeping your content for the web credible can mean having the courage to take on controversy. The advantage of tackling confronting subjects is that you’re almost certain to start a conversation.

The online equivalent of two-way communication is to have your content generate back-links from related sites and having your blog’s link shared on social media by industry influencers. These online interactions come with considerable SEO advantages.

So unless the risk to your bottom line or brand image is too great, go ahead and enter a debate that fits your content strategy. This includes responding to any crises involving your business professionally and without delay.

Contact Brilliant Blue to talk about Quality Content for the Web

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