SES NY | Developing Great Content

By Lauren Kade | Mar 23, 2011
More Articles by Lauren

My third session on Tuesday at SES New York is “Developing Great Content” with speakers:

Content has changed so much in the past few years, and now includes videos, images, news and maps, as well as blog posts and tweets.  I was interested to learn how to create great content through so many different channels.

Google has often redefined content:

  • May 2007, universal search is defined to include videos, images, news, maps, and books
  • December 2009 realtime search now includes blog posts and live updates on sites like Twitter and FriendFeed
  • February 2011 the Panda/Farmer update!

The Panda/Farmer update impacted 11.8% of Google search queries.  The update was designed to decrease rankings of “low quality sites.”

Search Reverses  the Communications Model

It starts with the user, who looks for what interests them in a search engine, and your website is trying to be found by the user.  In the traditional communications model, the newspaper or source of media runs a story, and then the consumer finds the story.

What is Great Content?

The content marketing revolution: think like a publisher!  Create content that matters, that is interesting, and that makes a difference.

The art of listening to your customers:

  • search box
  • social media
  • web analytics
  • keyword popularity
  • customer service
  • questionnaires

How do you catch your customers?

  • apps
  • desktop
  • mobile
  • podcasts
  • RSS feeds
  • social networks
  • news

The Six-Step Process to Be Successful Online

How much content do you need? How good does it need to be?  And how frequently do you need to publish to capture your market?

Step 1: Content Curation – What’s in the content that I have?  What categories are they in?  Are these categories aligned with what my competitors are doing and what my customers are looking for?

Step 2: Content Plan – Customer Research!  Learn from customer feedback what content they want on the site, and what will help them or interest them.  Create a content style guide based upon your research with details about what the clients is looking for, and where the writers should go with the content.

Step 3: Content Creation – Write around your company mantra, write for your customer’s needs and wants, and write a story!

How and Why to Tell Stories:

  • stories solve problems
  • they teach us
  • offer surprise and delight
  • focus on what happens next
  • introduce great characters
  • are contagious
  • engage readers

Sell Without Selling!  Create content in the form of:

  • whitepapers
  • webinars
  • podcasts
  • online courses
  • press releases

Step 4: Content Optimization – find competitive data and grade your website’s performance in comparison

Keyword Resesearch and Filtering

Filter keywords by finding duplicates and keywords that are irrelevant to your product. Then, break your keywords into silos and score the keywords within the silos.  This makes it easier for your writers to include keywords by category in the content.

Step 5: Content Distribution

Testing is a big part of content optimization, so include it when you distribute content.  Also, testing proves to your management team that you can get results from content edits.

Step 6: Content Performance

Did performance improve?  Track the following metrics:

  • traffic
  • return visitors
  • downloads
  • conversion rates
  • time on site
  • acquisition cost
  • ROI


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