Contributor: David Brim November 13, 2016
Over three years ago I decided to write a blog post sharing 7 Powerful Lessons Sun Tzu can teach you about Strategy. In that post I researched insights from ancient Chinese philosopher and military strategist Sun Tzu and shared how these lessons can help business professionals win the battle for customers in their respective marketplace.
In 2016, this single post generated over 20,000 unique visitors to my blog.
Think about that for a second.
A post that I wrote three years ago generated over 20,000 unique visitors this year to my blog without me paying a dime for the traffic (and the year isn’t over yet).
Creating quality content is an essential part of any effective SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and Social Media strategy. This is also one of the most neglected aspects of Social Media and SEO. Many business owners and marketing professionals want their “website optimized” to rank high in search engines. They get excited about setting up their social media profiles and eagerly track their likes, followers, and connections.
While having a quality website, the right social media profiles, and quality connections is valuable – it is content that truly brings it all together and delivers the results they are seeking from their social media and SEO efforts.
It is important to remember that Commodity content gets commodity results.
Below are 6 BIG BENEFITS of creating Awesome Content.
- Great Digital Content has a Long Shelf Life
I am not going to tell you that Print, TV advertising, and direct mail are dead. They are not. Every marketing and/or advertising tactic has its place and time to shine. My marketing agency has gotten amazing results from newspaper advertising for certain clients over the last year. What I will say is that print advertising and direct mail have a very short shelf life.
It may cost tens of thousands of dollars to place a print advertisement for one day. After a couple days, that paper is generally thrown away along with your ad.
Creating high quality digital content does take time and resources up front, but it can continue to drive traffic to your website for many years to come.
As an example, here is a snapshot from my Google Analytics for the Sun Tzu post I referenced that I wrote three years ago. You’ll see that this post has generated over 20,000 unique page views and visitors this year.
- Outrank the Big Boys
Ever heard of David & Goliath? Sure you have. Quality content is like your sling shot to battle the giants. Google has changed their search algorithms and placed a much larger value on quality content.
As an example, you’ll see that for the search term “Sun Tzu Lessons”, my blog is able to out rank some giants including Business Insider, Huffington Post, Life Hacker, and INC magazine.
- More Social Shares
Creating high quality content, and adding well positioned social share buttons increases the liklihood of visitors sharing your content with others. Google and other search engines do look at page level metrics such as social share signals and links pointing to the page when determining their rankings.
This is a self perpetuating feedback loop that continues to make itself stronger and stronger. The more the content is shared, the more people see and share the content.
- Become a Trusted Resource
Sharing valuable content gives you the opportunity to educate and help others. If they find your content to be beneficial they may subscribe to your blog, or reach out to you to get more customized assistance, which can lead to new business.
- Grow your Audience & Influence
When a visitor comes across valuable content that you created they may have a desire to be aware of future insights or content you create. This could lead to them following you on social media, subscribing to your blog, or simply frequenting your blog to read new posts.
As your audience and influence grows you build even more “reach” and opportunities to distribute your content, engage others, obtain more press attention, monetize your content, and form new meaningful relationships.
- Convert more visitors into Leads, or Customers
As the amount of quality traffic to your website increases you have more opportunities to “convert” this traffic into a subscriber, lead or paying customer. Depending on the type of business you are in this conversion could be: a phone call, newsletter subscription, purchase of a product, request for a quote, etc. I do suggest that you add a call-to-action box under your blog post. I utilize a WordPress plugin called Socialize to accomplish this. You’ll see my call-to-action box below this blog post and it includes multiple conversion opportunities such as subscribing to my blog, purchasing my book, and sharing my post.
I hope that you have found this blog post to be helpful!
Happy content creation!
Contributor: David Brim January 10, 2013
Search Engine Optimization is a topic I am frequently asked about. I am also frequently asked about Google’s Algorithm updates, most recently – Panda and Penguin, and how to avoid being penalized. There have been many changes related to SEO over the last year and a half. Many companies took large hits after being penalized for Black-Hat, or unethical search tactics.
One thing is important to remember pertaining to SEO…
Google and other search engines want to provide the most valuable result to their users. If a user finds what they are looking for they will most likely be satisfied with the search engine and want to return. If you can provide the user with the valuable content, or resources they are looking for and make it easy for them to accomplish their goal, your chances of being penalized by Google are much less.
Your job as a marketer, or SEO professional should be to…
In order to give the searcher what they want, you must first ask yourself…
What is the searcher trying to accomplish by typing in a particular keyword?
If you’re able to answer this question then you have uncovered the searcher’s intent. If you understand the searcher’s intent you’ll be able to better customize a landing page to give the searcher of that specific keyword what they are looking for. A common industry phrase to help you remember the different types of search intent is “Do, Know, Go.” Here’s a breakdown of this phrase in action:
Action (Do) Intent: Searcher wants to do something
Examples of Action oriented intents include:
- Wanting to download software
- Wanting to call a plumber
- Wanting to buy a product online
- Wanting to play an online game
- Wanting to translate words into different languages
- Wanting to calculate the interest payment on a loan online
- Wanting to buy tickets for an upcoming concert of sporting event
Information (Know) Intent: Searcher wants to learn or know something about a particular topic.
Examples of information-oriented intent include:
- Learning about a historical person
- Seeking the meaning of a word
- Wanting to learn about a new trend
- Wanting to read reviews for a particular restaurant
- Gathering information about a particular medical condition
Navigation (Go) Intent: Searcher wants to navigate to a specific place.
Examples of navigation-based intent include:
- Chipotle Order Online (want to go to order page on Chipotle website)
- Best Buy store locator (want to go to best buy store locator page)
- Facebook (want to visit Facebook’s website)
Understanding a searcher’s intent when they type in a specific keyword can help you craft and display content, resources, links or tools that meet their needs.
Unfortunately there is no crystal clear way of determining a searcher’s precise intent. At times there may also be multiple intents associated with a particular search query. For example, someone may be trying to visit “Go Intent” to Amazon where they will buy “Do Intent” a used product.
One valuable way to determine the searcher’s intent is to take your time and thoroughly understand your key prospect during your customer discovery process. You can also conduct searches and evaluate how other competitors for that particular keyword are taking advantage of the visitor traffic once they come to their website.
Remember that you want to craft your landing page to have the least path of resistance to help the searcher accomplish what they are looking to do.
If it’s a “do intent,” (let’s say the visitor wants to buy something), then you want a very clear “buy” call-to-action. If it’s a “know intent,” and if their goal is to learn more about a topic, then you want to have various aspects of the topic displayed in a digestible way. The visitor can dive deeper and learn more about the topic; this will result in higher searcher satisfaction and more conversions.
Understanding searcher intent is clearly a Win/Win and if you haven’t began incorporating it into your search engine optimization strategy…I highly suggest you do!
Contributor: David Brim January 5, 2013
Well…I said I wouldn’t buy a tablet until I finished my book and that my book would be the first thing I read on it. Yesterday I bought a tablet – An Amazon Kindle Fire HD to be exact 🙂
The book was inspired by a Copyblogger guest post I created and compares marketing to fishing. If you’d like to learn more about the book please visit: Land More Customers.
The link above contains a back story of the book and a related presentation that I gave to business owners, marketing executives and economic development professionals.
I am looking for several people who are in the business or marketing world to read it over and provide genuine feedback over the next couple weeks. If interested contact me.
Thanks for the support everyone!
Contributor: David Brim January 3, 2013
There are over 4 billion searches that occur every day on Google. When we search on Google we are looking to learn something, do something or navigate somewhere. Google makes it very easy to conduct a search…simply visit Google.com type in your query and click search. We all have done it, but did you know that there are many other ways to research through Google?
The HackCollege team did a great job preparing the infographic below explaining additional ways to use Google as a research tool. Though the graphic was created with students in mind, I found it very applicable to research in general. The graphic is not only very informative, but well designed and easily digestible. This being the case I thought I’d share it. Very well done guys!
I hope that you have found this infographic to be very beneficial. In addition to the research tips the infographic above suggests, you should also consider exploring “Think with Google” and Google Trends. Think with Google provides industry and consumer research, while Google Trends enables you to see a variety of details related to various keywords searched on Google (including: increase in search queries, locations of search queries, related search queries, trending / hot search queries, etc. It is also important to note that while Google can be used to conduct research, your research should not typically end there. There are many databases, market research companies and industry reports available that can assist you with your research. Nevertheless, Google is a quick and easy way to conduct research and if you choose to research using this method – I hope this helped!
Happy Googling and Happy New Year!!!
Contributor: David Brim July 12, 2012
This past Tuesday I gave a webinar to a group of CEOs, marketing directors and economic development professionals. The webinar was hosted by the Florida Economic Gardening Institute. Here is a short summary that was used to promote the webinar:
So many people all around the world have great ideas, products and services. And
yet some businesses do well, and some fail. What separates the businesses that starve from the businesses that feast?
For the answer, David Brim turns to another way people have been setting their feast table for hundreds of years: fishing. Landing a fish, just like landing a customer, requires strategy and know-how if you’re going to come home successful. During this webinar, David Brim explains his top recommendations on how to land the catch of the day through online marketing, SEO and social media.
Presented by: David Brim
Tuesday, July 10, 2012
9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
The webinar went very well and the feedback was positive.
I’ve added the slides from the webinar below…
The idea of comparing marketing to fishing was one that I’ve had for several years. In 2010 I wrote a guest blog post on Copyblogger, one of the top 5 internet marketing blogs, and it was very well received (over 50 comments, 350+ twitter shares and 100 Facebook shares. After the feedback from the blog post I decided to write a book on the topic and am about 85% complete at the time of this blog post.
I hope you enjoy the presentation slides and illustrations. Keep an eye out for the book…I’ll be publishing a blog post announcing it when it’s ready.
Here is an image from the presentation that is embedded above. I encourage you to click through and view the other slides in the presentation as well.
The webinar slides were published originally on the brand advance blog
*video of webinar added below on 7/16
I wish you all the best in your online marketing expedition!