Presented on September 20, 2012
Search has been dramatically changing over the past few months, and content is once again king for enabling search. Brands that develop quality content that educates customers and drives purchase decisions will have the competitive advantage. But it’s important to know that content marketing and search marketing go hand in hand, and the more and varied types of optimized content that brands have, the greater the chance to rank more of it in the organic search results.
Content also drives paid search by providing multiple types of assets to test as offers to improve conversion rates.
But what do you need to know to integrate content marketing into search marketing? What types of content are most important? Janet and Kari will help you find the content marketing path right for your search program in our content marketing webinar, How Content Marketing Drives Search and ROI Success.
Presenters: Janet Driscoll Miller, President and CEO, Search Mojo and Kari Rippetoe, Content Marketing Manager, Search Mojo
Presented on September 20, 2012
Hello everyone and welcome to today’s webinar: How Content Marketing Drives Search and ROI Success. My name is Jenny DeGraff and I will be serving as your mediator for today’s webinar. Now I would like to introduce our presenters for today.
Janet Driscoll Miller is the President and CEO of Search Mojo. She has nearly 20 years of marketing experience, and in addition to her work in search engine marketing, Janet has a background in marketing communications. She holds a degree in public relations and communications from James Madison University; she is a frequent speaker at marketing conferences, and writes for several blogs and print publications.
Kari Rippetoe is the Content Marketing Manager at Search Mojo. She has over 12 years of experience with search, social media, e-mail and content marketing. After studying marketing and communications at the University of Texas San Antonio she went on to manage online marketing strategies and campaigns for a variety of companies and organizations including Liquidity Services Inc. and The National Trust for Historic Preservation. Kari is also a Hope Spot inbound marketing professional.
Now on to Janet to talk a little bit about Search Mojo.
Thanks Jenny. Thanks for the great introduction. Welcome everyone, thanks for joining us today. Before we begin I’m going to mention a couple of things about our company, Search Mojo. We are a search engine marketing firm, founded in 2005. We specialize in the following areas SEO, pay per click advertising, online reputation management, and we have just launched the content marketing division. We are going to talk about why content marketing is important for search. There is a real reason that we decided we needed to go down this path and offer content for our clients, because it really is impactful for search. We will talk a lot about that today.
We are head quartered in lovely Charlottesville, VA, and we have been featured in many different publications about marketing and other types of publications and blogs as well. Our whole staff, including myself, we speak at lots of different marketing events, like MarketingProfs and search marketing events, and we work with multiple marketing automation tools. So, if any of you are marketing automation fans, we work with a variety of them like Marketo, Eloqua, Silverpop, and HubSpot.
So, with that I want to show you a couple of our customers that you may know. One of our clients was recently acquired by Google, which was a hoot for us because we are excited for them, it’s pretty exciting that we have a client acquired by Google. So, with that we will go through the agenda. We are going to focus on four main areas today. First, we are going to define what content marketing is, many of you may have heard this term, it’s really hot right now. What the heck does it mean? what does it mean to do content marketing?
The second thing is content marketing and search. So we are a search engine marketing firm. How does content marketing affect search engine marketing and all of your search efforts? Next we are going to talk about how can you get started. If you are not doing content marketing today, or you don’t really have a focus plan, how can you really get started with that effort?
Finally, we are going to talk about what is important in any marketing endeavor you do, how can you measure your success?
What is content marketing? According to Content Marketing Institute, content marketing is a technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience, with the objective of driving profitable customer action. This really isn’t new. This might sound familiar to many of you already, creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience.
What content marketing isn’t? It isn’t selling. Content marketing is a form of inbound marketing, meaning you are marketing to your prospects in a way that brings them in to you rather than you broadcasting out to them. So, it is communicating with, and educating your prospects and customers, without directly selling to them. The keyword here is educating. Content is a major part of the buyer decision to make a purchase, so content is going to educate them to help them make that decision.
So why is content marketing so important? Content marketing, like I mentioned, educating your customer is very, very important; they are using content for purchase decisions. 61% of consumers feel better about and are more likely to buy from a company that delivers custom content. Further 9 out of 10 that is 90% of B – B purchase decisions begin with exposure to content marketing. That’s huge in the B-B side. Also in the consumer side 57% of marketers have acquired new customers via their blog. So just by blogging they have been able to generate some sort of lead.
So, what are the benefits of content marketing? Thought leadership, that is huge. It can help you build a thought leadership division for our company so you are the go to knowledge industry resource. Content marketing can also help you build your brand and generate awareness for your company and product. Interesting content is one of the biggest reasons people follow brands on social media. If you are producing content that is interesting and valuable to your customers and prospects, you can build a community behind your content and your brand.
Another reason is it drives traffic to your website by a search in other media, including social media. And, last but not least, it can generate leads. If you remember from the last slide I mentioned 57% of marketers have acquired customers via content on their blogs. So, it can absolutely help you to generate leads.
In order to reap the benefits of content marketing it is important to deliver the right content at the right time. If you can map your content strategy to your customer buying cycle and think about what types of content makes the most sense for each stage of the buying cycle then you will be able to alternately generate from those efforts.
Here we give some examples of different types of content that that you can utilize from the top of the build file. So for awareness, search marketing is one of the types of content we will be talking about today, press releases, social media. In the consideration phase search marketing is also big there, webinars and videos, blogs. And in the purchase phase of search marketing, yet again. So you can see that content for search is important at all stages. Janet will now talk about why content is important for search.
Thank you. Now I’m going to talk about content marketing organic search first, and then we’ll talk about paid search and how content can really help you with your paid search as well. One of the reasons that you really want to pay attention to this, because it’s important, I think everyone in this webinar probably understand the importance of organic in paid search. Your customers are obviously using search engines, 89% of consumers use search for purchases, and 81% of consumers perceptions are influenced by search. So, search is clearly a very important part of any marketing plan. I think you all are probably aware of that which is probably why you are here.
The question though is, why is content important for SEO? I like to think of it this way, content is what search engines index. That’s really what a website is, it’s content. I’ve just shown an example here for the Mazda CX5 vehicle. If you notice when I do a search for that in Google, even though the images and things are really small, you can get a feel for the fact that Google as an example is ranking lots of different types of content. You have news, you have web pages, blogs, you have videos, you have images, all sorts of things and Bing included also does this, they make many types of content, so there is a lot of opportunity to write more information about your company or your product etc. So that’s one reason it’s super important for SEO.
So, what kinds of formats of different types of content can be ranked and indexed by a search engine? Well, really there’s a ton. I was actually surprised at all of the different formats that can actually be indexed. Obviously HTML based pages can be indexed, what I’m talking about in this slide is more the format of your content itself. So HTML based pages are obviously ready for Google and Bing to index. PDF files, a lot of people use PDF for e-books and that kind of thing. They can be indexed. Video can be indexed, images can be indexed. There is a whole list of all the file types at this link if you want to go to Google webmaster help. You can do a search for content types and you can find out all the different content types that Google can rank.
What types of content should you consider? There are lots and lots of types of things that you can consider that you could rank in those formats that we just talked about in organic search. Things like video, info graphics, photos, recipes, blogs, white papers, e-books, press releases, there are many things. The sky is really the limit. The key is making sure that any of these things is in the actual file format that you need to have them ranked. We talked about that on the last slide. Just make sure you check at the end, Google just to see what Google can index and what it cannot.
So how do you prep your content you create for SEO and for organic search?
I forgot a poll. I’m sorry. Let me go back real quick. Sorry about that. I’m going to hand it to Jenny really quickly. I forgot to do that.
Thanks, Janet. Our next poll, we want to know what types of content are you currently using? A lot of video, images, blog posts, press releases, or other?
It looks like everybody is doing a great job promoting all types of content. That’s wonderful.
Okay. Got a little carried away there. I get excited about this stuff. Let’s now talk about how you prep that content that you’re creating now for SEO. There are two main things that we are going to talk about, rich snippets and XML byte maps. First I’m going to talk about rich snippets. What are rich snippets? Rich snippets is the Google name for these items but there’s also this type of mark up on Bing as well for a select few types of content.
What Google tells us is that each rich snippets, which are additional information that are added to your organic listing in Google from their experiments, is a better idea of what’s going to be on the page when the person gets there. They find that there is a higher click thru rate. Google really believes in this stuff and the reason that they believe in it is that they think it’s a better user experience. When people are seeing what they are looking for and they are going to get a better idea of what they are going to get when the click through from the search page, it generally means that they don’t abandon as often either. Google really wants to improve the user experience, and that is one thing that rich snippets can do.
Let me show you what those look like. First review, I start here at the ones that have asterisks, they are used by both Google and Bing. Bing doesn’t have nearly the broad breadth that Google has, and there is more than this in Google now, but just a couple to show you that you might be using.
Here is an example of reviews. Here is a search I did for Guadalajara, which is a Mexican restaurant a couple of blocks away from our office. If you look at these three listings here you see that they have stars on them and reviews. What the sites like TripAdvisor, Yelp, and UrbanSpoon have done, is that they have added this mark up, it’s called Schema.org. It’s a categorization and information about how you can mark up this information with structured data and structured markup language. What they have done is basically on their site where their reviews are made it so that Google can understand that this data that they are looking at on this page is reviews.
When they do that and do it appropriately they can have these wonderful rich snippets show up and actually make those items more visible in the organic search and likely get more clicks as well. In some cases we have a lot of great information, like that first one from Yelp tells you how many reviews and then what the price range is for that restaurant. It’s pretty cool.
Next we are going to talk about people rich snippets. There are two that you see here from LinkedIn, there is mine and Danny Sullivan’s, you will see that what they have done here is they have added person information, which is a type of mark up. You can see here it tells you where I am located, what my title is, and all that kind of stuff, right underneath in my organic listing when you do a search for my name. It is really handy and again providing extra information.
Then we have Product. So this is what a search for a particular product looks like, but to be clear, those at the top are not product snippets. Those are from Google shopping, so that’s not what you are looking for when you are looking for rich snippets. Rich snippets is actually just what I am highlighting down here, where you see it’s got stars, it tells me how many reviews, it tells you the price, whether the item is in stock, that is all done on the actual product page of best buys website and through structured markup language you can find at schema.org. That is not Google shopping, that is something separate.
Businesses and organizations can also have mark up, and recipes. Here is an example of a search I did for something called Guinness Pie. One of my friends makes Guinness Pie, I think it sounds disgusting but apparently a lot of people like it because there are a lot of recipes for it. What you will see when you do a search for something like Guinness Pie or Guinness Pie recipe is you will get all of these recipe entries here like I have highlighted, and you have reviews on those recipes, how long it takes to cook, how many calories might be in it. It is pretty cool.
If you have recipes on your site, or you have the potential to put recipes on your site, we were working with the California Dried Plum Org. they for instance had a really good instance where they should be putting up recipes. So they added recipes on their site, we marked them up with rich snippets so they would be more visible and more searchable with recipe search.
Next we have events. We do this on our site for any events we are going to; here is a local venue that we frequent here in Charlottesville that has lots of concerts. So you see the Avett Brothers, this is actually one from last year but the Avett Brothers came last September, and Earth Wind and Fire was here, you can click on any of those and get to the page on the website for more information on how to buy tickets right from the results. Once the date passes that result will no longer show. So once Thursday September 15th passes and that event has passed it will automatically disappear from that list of three that you see there under the nTelos Wireless Pavilion. You don’t have to go back and clean it up later, which is really helpful because that can take a long time if you have a lot of events.
Next is music, this is also pretty cool. If you are a musician or you have music on your website you can see that here is a Myspace listing for Bruce Springsteen site on Myspace. You can see all of this and you can actually play that music or a snippet of that music right from that link. It’s pretty cool. For music that is a really good option too. So there’s lots and lots of options of rich snippets, I encourage you to check them out and really learn about all of them because they really can improve your click through rate and get you a whole lot more visibility from the SEO side.
Coupled with rich snippets is a Sitemap. I’m not talking about the HTML sitemap you put on your site so that people can navigate it better, I’m talking about a sitemap you create just for the search engine. It’s called an XML Sitemap. That is actually correct grammar there and correct spelling there, it is a capital S. Use a capital S on these types of site maps. I don’t know why, but they do it that way. So, there are a couple of different types of Sitemaps that you need for different types of content. For your website in general you might run an all textual, PDF and that kind of thing, you might use a standard XML Sitemap. Basically it lists out all the pages and text content on your website and it makes it easier for the search engines to find where that content is. That is really helpful.
I will tell you we use this as an example on our blog, a blog is content, we create the XML site map on our blog and it’s very helpful for Google, and right now we put up a blog post it is indexed by Google within a minute of posting. It’s huge. It makes it much faster to get new content indexed as well. I highly recommend it for your website in general and your blog.
Video content, we are going to talk about a case study in just a minute of how video XML site maps really help you get video indexed as well and the video XML are really key if you have video on your site. Image XML site maps if you have images and the same thing for news. News XML is very important if you are going to be in Google news and that sort of thing. Keep an eye on those. If you want to learn more about site maps you can also search for XML site maps in Google and I think Google is the first entry. It tells you all about it at Google webmaster central.
Once your site map is created you also have to take the next step of registering it. Those are the links right there to Google and Bing’s webmaster tools, you need to register with both of those. So want to make sure that you tell them where the site map is so that they can make sure that they can find it and it’s not a problem for them to find that information and content.
I mentioned that I was going to share with you a case study, this is from one of our clients called Petro Chem. One of the things we did for them, they had some videos on their site, for keywords where Google offers video results, video in the index stands out 50 times so it has a 50 times better chance to appear in the first page of results. In other words reports are saying you have a better chance of ranking video content than you do text content. So, if you’re not doing video today, all those people who said they weren’t doing video earlier when we asked, you should be doing video. Video is huge and it ranks really fast, and this is the case that proves it.
So what we did here was they had all these videos, they had ten videos on the Petro Chem website, we said let’s mark all these videos up appropriately with the proper schema markup that we talked about. All of the structured mark up for video. Then once we do that, let’s run an XML site map for videos and register it with Google. Well guess what happened? In the next 30 days, we were able to rank half of those videos in the top ten of Google. It drove up organic search traffic to these pages 335%. That is nothing to sneeze at. Then 80 days after Google had come through a couple of times and gotten all the information they needed, guess what? We got 9 out of 10 ranked in the top ten and all we did was do structured mark up and do an XML site map. That’s all we did, and look at what kind of impact it could make. 889% more organic search traffic through those videos. Wow. This means that you have got to do it. To me, it’s not an option. You have to make sure you do this because it has incredible, incredible results for your website. With that, I believe I’m going to hand it back to Kari now who is going to talk a little bit about user generated content.
This is another type of content that kind of shifts the burden of content creation away from the business. You might have seen lots and lots of examples of this and even participated in and been a generator of user generated content. Examples of this would be, as Janet was going through earlier reviews, videos that your customers or other people have created; forums are a great example of user generated content and all of those boards where people are talking about all kinds of different topics. That is definitely UGC. Q&A sites as well, places like Yahoo! Questions and Quora are all user generated content as well. It can help you to create lots of content quickly; however, it can backfire if it is not monitored closely or managed well or executed properly.
So let’s take a look at a few examples of some good bad and ugly user generated content. So the first one, a great company called Litter Robot, they make these litter boxes that auto clean themselves I believe, they have a distinctive look and a lot of customers were making very cute videos around the litter robot. We are going to show you one right now. Oh, unfortunately we don’t have the link to it right now, but basically it had to do with the death star and a cat wearing a Darth Vader mask that didn’t like it very much. We can provide links for these examples later on, but that’s a really great example of a customer that loved the product so much and thought that it was so great that they made a video about it.
The next example is a bad example. Lady Bic reviews on Amazon. If you were to go to Amazon and look up Lady Bic, so a pen that was specifically marketed to woman, let’s just say that many of the people who were reviewing these pens on Amazon weren’t too happy about it. They weren’t really posting bad reviews so much as they were posting very sarcastic reviews. It didn’t seem to make sense that Bic would make a pen specifically marketed toward women. I encourage you to look it up on Amazon and take a look at some of the reviews posted there.
It’ll give you a good laugh.
Yeah. The last examples we will look at I believe is a caption contest and I believe there is an image. So Shell was trying to encourage people, they were trying to liven up their image and put themselves in a more positive light in terms of the environmental movement and make themselves look a little more environmentally friendly so they launched this campaign for people to create caption for different photos.
This is an example of one right here, someone created a caption for a picture of an animal and it says you can’t run your SUV on cute. That really blew up in their faces unfortunately because they had a lot of people who weren’t quite on board with what Shell was trying to do.
Things to watch out for though in your content marketing, we are talking a lot today about how content marketing helps you with your search marketing effort, but you don’t want to write for search engines specifically, you don’t want to keyword stuff your content, you don’t want to write just to get ranked in Google. You want to write for your customers. You want to know who your customers are and what type content is most appropriate for them because ultimately you are educating them. You are providing them a resource to help them make a purchasing decision. Your content should ultimately turn into a sales. That is what you should always keep in mind when you are writing you content. So now I will turn it back over to Janet to talk about content for paid search.
Thank you. I would be remiss to only talk about organic and not talk about paid, because really content, especially in the B to B sector, is so important at driving lead generation, and it’s really helpful for paid search to have an offer. Many times when we are talking to our clients about creating ads creating landing pages we are usually asking them what kind of assets do you have what kinds of offers can we use to entice people to sign up and become leads.
This is an example for a search I did for marketing automation software; you can see two of the three ads at the top have an offer. One is for a vendor comparison analysis from Marketo, and the other is from Pardo with the unbiased guide to marketing automation software. Both of those have an offer for me and can entice me to click through because they are offering me something. I know what I’m going to get at the other end. Often other offers might be free trials and stuff but what I usually see especially in the B2B, a lot of content marketing. We can even watch our video, it can be download our white papers, bitter comparison.
When I click through, this is the offer I clicked through in the Marketo ad, you’ll notice I can download it now, I just have to enter two pieces of information and I can download this Forester research right now so there is an action right now, when I get to the landing page, the content is also used on the landing page to entice me to go ahead and complete that conversion as well.
So what type of content works best? One of the very common questions I hear and I see this a lot in different publications where they start promoting this is the best kind of content to use if you are in B-B or in this vertical, yada, yada, yada. But the reality is that you have to test everything. A lot of people are really high in video, as am I, because I just told you hey video is awesome for SEO, and I love that, but is video always best for search engine marketing for pay per click offers as well? And the reality is that you have to test it.
This is one test we did with one of our clients; we had read something in BtoB Magazine that said white papers are the best thing to use as an offer for PPC for a B2B companies. So we thought we would test that. So we had an industry white paper that they had created and we had a video. The video in this case actually outperformed the white paper even though supposedly white papers are the way to go; it outperformed the white paper, the video did, by 4-1. Really awesome. It had great returns but it told us that you can’t just trust what you see in a magazine saying this is the best form of content, you have to test it for yourself.
And to take it a step further we actually decided ourselves at Search Mojo we’ll try a video versus a case study for our own lead generation through pay per click advertising and in doing that we saw the reverse. The video wasn’t as effective as the case study. What is interesting about this as that we are two different industries, the other one was construction project management software and ours is obviously search optimization and paid search, so it can differ that way.
But we are different that way but the other thing about video is that not all videos are created equal some are longer some are shorter. Some have people on it, talking heads and so forth, that you may not be interested in. All those things, all those factors can have an effect on how effective this is for folks. That’s really a challenge. My recommendation is to test everything and see what works best for you.
We’re going to go to the next slide, and before we do get started with this, Jenny has a poll she is going to run for us. Our last poll, I promise.
Yeah, last one. This poll we want to know what are your greatest content challenges. Don’t have enough resources, getting executive buy in, or cost of content development, or just anything else.
It looks like the primary challenge is not having enough resources, which is very, very common we have found. Now back to Janet or . . .
Kari is going to tell us how to get started, yay.
First and foremost you want to know why you are creating your content. You need to define or goals and know which content is right to meet that goal and also for that particular audience. So you want to figure out what type of content makes the most sense for your audience and your product and your brand and decide what keywords will align with your goals. So if you are developing content that will ultimately will also get range well in search engines and you are developing content for customers but you want to figure out what keywords align best with your goals and figure out they types of content from there that you can develop as a result.
You also want to look at what opportunities are out there that aren’t being addressed. So that might be that you research into your competitors. What are they doing that you might be able to improve upon, or what are they not doing? That can be even more important, what gap can you possibly fill in that would be important for your customers to know about. Speaking about your customers, you might even want to think about what questions they are asking or your prospects are asking so that you can fill in a gap there and help to educate those customers and possibly even turn them into leads to a sale.
You also want to take a look at the inventory of your existing content. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this presentation, many of you are already doing content marketing and you probably don’t even know it and so you probably have huge library or some sort of inventory of content that you can use or repurpose use or improve upon so that is half the battle right there.
Then you want to create your plan. What do you have that already fits in your goals, fill in what’s missing, what do you need to create, and then what types of content can you then start to create from there that align with your keywords, align with your audience segments, and align with all the research that you have done.
This is an example of a way that you can align your goals and your keywords with your content. Take the time to create a table so that for each stage of the buying cycle, or each of your goals, awareness, though leadership, trying to drive web traffic to your site, generating leads, and then you can think of what kinds of keywords are out there to achieve these goals and then develop content around that.
So keyword types meaning, you would look up awareness try and use broader industry and product based keywords, you might use some competitor keywords, and you might also think of some local searches if you are trying to target local customers. You might come up with some certain types of content to meet that goal, so for awareness you might come up with press releases. Put a press release out to make people aware of your company or your product, or a new service offering. You might think of info videos to make people more aware of it, you might create some info graphics, and you would do the same things for each one of your goals depending on what these are.
What I talked about earlier was repurposing content. If you already have a lot of content available at your disposal, then you can reuse that and put it out there because people digest it in different ways. So you might for instance add a video to a blog post or you might take a white paper that you already have and make it into a webinar, or vice versa. You might even have a series of blog posts that you can make into an e-book for instance. So this will help you to save on resources and development time. It will help you to get more types of content ranked in search engines. So here are some examples of content repurposing. This is a blog post that basically turned into various types of content. This was posted on what looks like LinkedIn.
Yeah, this was posted on . . . that’s Facebook there. What happened was we took this blog post and we turned this blog post into multiple types of content. We turned it into content on Facebook by posting it on Facebook, then we tweeted it and gave it content on Twitter, gave something to put up there, then we actually created an event on Facebook because we decided to have a webinar on this particular blog post. So we decide to have a webinar topic about it which led to then another Twitter post about the webinar that was coming up, and that led to us recording the webinar and putting it on YouTube to give it YouTube video content. And then finally we also put it on SlideShare because gave it PowerPoint slides we could put it on SlideShare. From that one original blog post we got seven pieces of content. That’s pretty awesome. It didn’t mean we had to reinvent the wheel every time. We just repurposed, repackaged some of the content that we already had into a different format so that it’s digestible to different types of people.
Right. So as I mentioned before you can take what you already have and turn it into something new or even add to it to replace what you already have. Now we are going to talk about measuring the results of your content marketing efforts. You want to measure your content against your goals. Those are already established. You want to measure against search goals or sales goals and how you measure will vary by what those goals are. You always want to think about what you can measure. What is going to be viable for you to measure, what you have the capability and the tools to measure. The thing is, is that there are so many tools out there and you really have to think about if that tool exists, then you can measure it. If it’s important and if it aligns with your goals, then you really should be measuring it as well.
Here we are talking about some of the tools that you can use specifically for SEO, to measure certain metrics. What we created here is a table to map different metrics to different phases of the buying cycle and then the tools that you can use to measure those. So for awareness for instance you might measure page views, document views, social shares, downloads, inbound links. Those are just examples of how you might measure the awareness of your brand, the awareness of a certain piece of content.
And then you might use a tool like Google Analytics. They have within Google analytics a tool called Events where you can measure things like downloads and video views or certain events that you specify. You might use the tools at YouTube or that other social media platforms provide to you such as Facebook incites to see how people how people are consuming those and sharing those pieces of content via social media. You might use, there’s a tool called Majestic SEO, which I believe measures inbound links.
Inbound links and some other things as well. Most of these tools, many of the ones we are mentioning here are free or pretty low cost. No reason you can’t give them a try. They are really pretty easy to use and straightforward tools. We also have some tools for PPC too.
So here you can see how we have created the same sort of mapping, what kind of metrics you might be measuring on the PT side. Not necessarily inbound links or ranking, but your paid traffic that you might measure through Google Analytics where you can actually filter through organic and paid search traffic, same thing with events or if you are using video as part of your landing page you might measure though YouTube or events even, how well that’s doing. You might even use your CRM software, for instance down in the purchase phase of the buying cycle your tools like Marketos or Salesforce or HubSpot are going to be able to tell you how well some of your leads are converting into sales.
With that we are going to talk about the key takeaways today. Kari mentioned right content for the customer, when people come to talk to me about SEO, writing for SEO, I always tell them I was a marketer before I was an SEO. That’s really important to remember. You are writing content for people not search engines. I think most SEOs should say that to you if they don’t you should fire them.
Content derived search which drives leads, content is really key to SEO and paid search and not all content is created equal. Like I talked about with the videos, test all that stuff and make sure you have the right type of content for the right type of audience and the right type of buying cycle stage as we mentioned. You want to set up content properly for search, use the structured markup language and schema.org. Use XML Site maps to help you get that stuff ranked and showing up correctly.
Kari said make a plan to get that stuff started. You have to start somewhere, make a plan. What do you have? Make sure that you repurpose what you’ve got, make that inventory, figure out what you can use today that you already got. And, of course always, always, always measure your results. Test different things and adjust to see what works best for you.
With that if anyone is interested in following up with us would like to get some help, I know a lot of people said they were having trouble having enough resources which is a really common problem we see in trying to develop content for search, please feel free to give me a call. I’d be happy to talk to you about how we might be able to help you, even just a couple of minutes to supplement some of your staff just to help you get a bit more content up there because it really will make a huge impact. So that is my number and my contact information coming up also again on the final slide.
I want to remind everybody that we have another webinar in two weeks from now. Sometimes it’s three weeks. It depends on how many weeks are in the month. We have another webinar coming up. If you are a nonprofit or you know anyone who is a nonprofit, we are going to be presenting a webinar with vertical response and it’s going to be about the four online marketing tactics nonprofits need for success. So it’s going to cover lots of different marketing topics, not just search. So if you know anyone in the nonprofit sector, or you’re in the nonprofit sector be sure to register for that when you get a chance. It will be two weeks from today on October 4th. With that, I’m going to hand it back to Jenny. Here’s our contact information. Please contact us after the webinar today. I know we have a few questions to get to.
Yes. We don’t have a ton of time but we can get to a couple of questions. The first one is how was the phone number entered on the events rich snippet example?
I’m going to try and go back there really quickly. We’ll see how this works. It’s so slow today. I don’t now why it’s so stinking slow.
It’s only yours.
Is it just me?
Am I really? Oh, goodness. Okay. That’s good. Here we go.
That second one there I think what you’re talking about is where you see the little American flag, you see 800-929, yada, yada, yada. That is actually not from a rich snippet. That is actually in the title tag, and that little item right there is because I have Skype. If you have Skype installed, I had to turn this off because it was annoying me. Skype turns every phone number into a click to call phone number right there from wherever you are. So that’s all that is. If you put your phone number in your title tag of your web page, it will show up in the organic search. You don’t even need a rich snippet for that. That is really just simply displaying your phone number in the title pack.
Since we’re talking about rich snippets and schema and then our next question asks: How do you get that to show up on Google?
Oh, the rich snippets to show up on Google?
Well, there is a great tool if you actually search for rich snippet testing tool, it’s a handy tool, it’s better than it used to be. It used to be real buggy, but I think it’s gotten a lot better. You can test your rich snippet on Google to see how it would be display. Google chooses if it is going to display it or not, but 9 times out of 10 it typically does show the rich snippet. But that tool actually shows you if you have any errors in your markup language, which is really important. So when you are tagging all this stuff in your page go to schema.org it will tell you how to tag that content properly. There is also some information in Google’s webmaster help where it tells you how to mark up different types of content, what’s required, what’s not required. So you go to Tools, mark up information, and then go back to the rich snippets testing tool, and make sure you’ve done all your markup correct. That’s really important.
Great. Our next question, I believe it’s about site map. It asks: does the video need to be hosted on YouTube, or can it be hosted on your site?
That’s an excellent question. I used to be of the belief that you didn’t use YouTube for anything. I used to hate YouTube from an SEO perspective, but I changed my mind and we actually do a lot of stuff on YouTube. We also use Brightcove for ourselves for longer videos. We did that because originally YouTube had limits to how long a video could be. You can host it on YouTube and embed it on the page of your site. what that does is it actually gives you the ability to rank it on YouTube and on your own site. I kind of like that YouTube aspect now because you can actually do a little bit more with it. What we are going to cover a little bit in the nonprofit one in two weeks is if you’re nonprofit, there is a really cool thing now with YouTube for nonprofit that actually lets you get call to action items and links directly inside of your video. It’s really awesome. So if you need people to donate or take action and sign up for something and you’re nonprofit, you can get that in YouTube now. You can drive people back to your site. That was my big complaint with YouTube all along. It was not traffic on your own site. So check that out. Definitely, we’ll cover a little bit of that in two weeks as well, YouTube for nonprofits. If you’re not a nonprofit, it still does at least get you an opportunity to rank two versions of your videos, which is awesome.
I think we might have time for one or two more questions. This one is pretty good. I don’t know if this is easily answered. What type of content works best for B2B versus B2C?
I don’t know if anything is better than the other?
I think it really comes down to testing. It is hard to say. Kari gave some really good examples of B2C that were flops.
I think it comes down to your customers and your audience. You’d probably be surprised at what types of content they actually like to consume and share. You might think that certain types of content like white papers and e-books would work best for B2B but videos would go over really well with B2C audience, but Janet showed us with Petro Chem example is that videos actually converted really well. So if you do some keyword research on your keyword industry on search engines and social media, you would probably be surprised about the insights you would uncover about the content your audience likes. So you can use those insights from your research, and then you can do as Janet mentioned, testing it out. Testing out different types of content and see what works best.
This one is pretty important for 68% of folks who don’t have enough resources to get started. Do you have any recommendations for an easy way to get started on content marketing?
Blogging is an easy way to get started and to ease you into it. It does still requite a little bit of work and time commitment to planning your posts and making sure you keep your blog updated. A couple of weeks ago I was at a conference called Content Marketing World. There was a guy named Marcus Sheridan. Basically, he is the marketing and sales guy at River Pools, which is based here in VA and he delivered a great and inspiring keynote at Content Marketing World and said to write down 100 questions that your customers ask and then write blog posts to answer each of the questions. So one blog post per question. If you write two blog posts a week from that, you will have blog content for an entire year. That is a good way to look at it and to get started with blogging, just answering your customer’s questions, just listening to what they have to say.
Blogs rank very well from an organic search perspective. They are given a little bit of a boost, I think, by Google but make sure that you do those XML site maps with your blog. If you use WordPress, there are lots of Google site maps plugins to WordPress you could use that automatically generate and ad to your site map as you have new content. But like I said, we write a blog post and it’s indexed Google in a minute. It’s a amazing. It’s amazingly fast. It gives you an opportunity too that you might not have on your website where you can talk about other keyword that might not be appropriate on your website but you want to address them in some kind of way. You don’t always have new content on your website. Like, your website is oftentimes is more like a brochure in some ways so you don’t update it all the time, but the blog gives you that mechanism.
So people are nervous about taking on a blog. So like, “Well, I don’t have time to update it and yada, yada, yada.” You got to do what you can do. Try to get in there, do what you can, and then the great part about a blog is what we talk about with repurposing, is you can use that on Twitter and all the social media as content. That is a fantastic way to get your toe wet and start getting some content driving traffic to your site.
All right. Great. Thanks, Kari and Janet. We are definitely out of time. We ran over a little bit, but if any of you have any other questions, reach out to Janet or Kari, or use the hashtag mojowebinar on Twitter.