It’s really easy, as your digital marketing strategy develops, to get stuck on the idea that your content needs to appease the search engine gods. As though your writing is some kind of burnt offering that must create a pleasing fragrance to the most recent algorithm updates. Obviously, if you end up in this headspace – you’re missing the point that your content needs to serve your audience. Your demographic, or tribe,
There are some lessons to be learned from how search engines will rank your page to be sure. And let’s be clear, I’m mainly talking about Google here, but as I’ve written before, search is now taking place in lots of other places too. Learning a little bit about how search engine algorithms will rank your content has some value because increasingly they’re geared towards helping searchers to find the most meaningful, valuable and authoritative content.
But before you take a deep dive into the algorithmic side of things, why not take some time out to think about some other ways in which you might better serve the people your content is actually intended for? After all, if it doesn’t actually meet their needs – then it doesn’t matter how optimised your site and content is, right?
Here’s some ideas for how you can narrow down the focus of your articles and develop a content plan that stands out from the crowd, and checks the SEO boxes at the same time!
Don’t be obvious
When you’re writing your material, try to think out of the box, Is there some way of looking at the thing you’re talking about that hasn’t been done before? Do you have a unique slant on the subject? What about it might be edgy or offend some people?
What’s the need or want?
Does the article address a specific issue for your people? Is it tickling a desire or meeting a need of some sort? Does it provide them with some information they can’t find elsewhere?
Know your subject
Once you’ve found a want or need, and a non-obvious slant – you can get down to the business of presenting it. But how well do you know the subject material? Carrying out some research and doing a bit of brainstorming will get you so far… But how many people have done it before you? Think about your specific experiences within the subject, and how you can express them and add value for your audience in a way that is unique to you.
Develop a voice
If you can bring together the points above, then the final piece of the puzzle is developing a voice that resonates with your audience. Some people will love you. Some will hate you, and that’s the way it should be. Don’t be afraid to upset people. Let your quirks, flaws and foibles shine through – because those are the things that will draw your people to you.
In times gone by, if you wanted the gods to smile upon you and send favour in your direction – burning a sacrifice was the way to get their attention. Thankfully, attracting a following doesn’t require you to place your firstborn on the altar. But it may necessitate some soul searching as to how to narrow down your niche and reach the right people with your words. Implementing the strategies above will help you to do that.
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