As great a tool as the web can be for the proliferation and spread of knowledge for those who buy blog articles, it’s just as easy to fall into the realm of rumors and outright misunderstandings. Don’t believe it? Just look at the current landscape surrounding guest blogging. Once considered the best way to spread awareness for brands online, this tactic now rests firmly on the sidelines thanks to a massive misunderstanding regarding Google’s intentions.
To clear the air once and for all – and potentially uncover a content marketing edge via guest blog writing for your organization – let’s delve into the current outlook of this method, as well as what this search engine giant really wants to see when your brand’s content shows up on other domains and sites.
When Did Guest Blogging Bite the Dust?
The answer to this question lies within what you consider guest blogging. If you’re talking about the “old days” that including keyword stuffing, buying mountains of shady bulk links, and other underhanded tactics that force-fed viewers thinly-veiled sales pitches, then yes, Google did kill this type of guest blogging.
As Matt Cutts – Google’s head honcho at the WebSpam team – explains, this move was all about putting an end to these decaying methods of guest blog writing. While guest blogging once stood as a strong way to generate value for the reader and for participating brands, it was only a matter of time before less than savory factors within the digital marketplace corrupted this ideal for the sake of a quick jump in views.
“Reports of My Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated”
However, just because Cutts and the rest of the team behind the scenes decided that enough was enough in terms of poor guest blogging practices, that doesn’t mean that this form of outreach is completely off the radar. In his look at this reinvigorated, hardline stance on spam content, Search Engine Journal’s John Rampton notes that Google is still willing to provide benefits and favorable rankings to those who undergo this process – provided that you and your team of content experts play by the new and heavily enforced set of guest blog writing rules.
Capitalizing on the New Wave of Guest Blogging
So what exactly constitutes an acceptable piece of guest blog content? As part of a continuing theme found within Google’s view on virtually everything content and search engine optimization (SEO) related, it all starts with value. If you’re not able to give the person on the other side of the screen something worthwhile and enriching to read, don’t bother wasting their time. Naturally, what constitutes meaningful content can vary from audience to audience, but as long as you keep this ideal at the forefront of your approach, then it’s hard to go wrong with guest blogging.
From here, ensuring that you get all of the details, facts, and information right comes next. Having the right intentions regarding quality is one thing, but following through with incorrect claims and statements is far from what Google would call a strong finish. A good rule of thumb, according to Rampton, is that if you’re trying to put up guest content that would make Matt Cutts want to strangle you, you’re probably better off heading back to the drawing board.
If you’re able to pass this test – or work with someone who knows how to play by Google’s rules – then the sky is the limit in terms of brand reach and awareness. No matter what industry you call home, this is a hard draw to pass up, especially when you stop and consider that so many voices on the web have no problem rushing to tell you that guest blogging is long dead and gone.
The ultimate goal of content marketing is offering your target audience information and materials that will engage them and motivate them to choose your business.
Seems easy, right?
Often, companies will simply share general content to please everyone. But let’s be honest: you can’t win them all. And that’s okay!
Rather than throwing a line and hoping the fish will bite, create Thought Leadership content strategically catered to your target market. Consider the people who would genuinely need or care about what your business offers, rather than wasting time, effort, and resources on creating general, unfocused content. Successful content marketing involves promoting your products and services to the people interested in the subject matter, who will read the content, click on your company website, and take action.
As an executive of an organization, you are a valuable piece of the brand. Consumers want to know about the human presence leading companies, in order to understand more about the company’s values and goals.
Take advantage of your position as an industry expert and share extra content to attract more attention to yourself as an industry leader and your company. Your quality content will build your reputation as a reliable voice to earn your consumer’s trust. However, if it’s not focused on your target audience, you won’t earn many conversions from your content.
Consider these techniques to guide your Thought Leadership content so it can expand and strengthen your loyal consumer following:
- Identify your target audience by reviewing your current consumer data and identifying who is investing in your business or reacting to your thought leadership materials so far. Look for trends to find why these people are interested and if others like them haven’t been reached yet.
- Conduct customer research to learn how they will respond to your thought leadership content. Request participation in surveys, polls, social media comments, and more to learn about your existing impression on your audience and how you can improve your platform.
- Create target audience character profiles. Identify their interests, demographics, pain points, needs, and desires, and write to them.
- Find where your current and potential audience is active online. Catch their attention by being active and sharing your content marketing materials on these platforms.
- Pull inspiration from other Thought Leader examples. Research other executives within your field who implement successful content marketing through their personal platforms. Learn what qualities make their content attractive and why readers respond to it positively. These examples can offer a base for you to visualize what you want to achieve.
- Recognize your strengths as a Thought Leader. Often, leaders aren’t necessarily aware of the unique talents that give them an advantage in their industry until asked. Reflect on what topics you know best and how to input your insights to humanize your materials, make them original and more engaging for your audience.
Case Study: How Strategic Content Marketing Can Broaden Your Audience
In our client strategy calls, our team will interview our expert clients to learn about their industry expertise and find out what’s meaningful to them, their business, and then identify who we believe to be their target audience. We use these insights to inspire our content subject matter and tone to create impactful content for their current and potential consumers.
For example, our client, Dr. Nitin Desai, approached our strategy team to create content to promote his COVID Pre-Check app. His innovative software is intended to help employers ensure their employees who enter the office are COVID-free, providing a safe environment by eliminating the chance of spread.
Our team of strategists recognized that with Dr. Desai’s thorough professional knowledge around the COVID-19 virus, he had the potential to become a reliable voice in a culture of people seeking answers. We created content for Dr. Desai that focused on sharing COVID-related insights to reach a wider audience, which has been a successful mission. Our thoroughly planned content reflected his industry expertise, which brought him attention from various media outlets and publications, including Forbes.
By reaching out to our professional content marketing team, Dr. Desai achieved his goal of promoting his groundbreaking app, while also positioning himself as an authoritative voice in his field. Our team learned about his voice, discovered what was meaningful to him and his target audience, and optimized this to create focused, engaging content that broadened his consumer scope.
Ready to Invest In Your Article-Writing.co Thought Leadership Package?
At Article-Writing.co, we understand that you have a lot on your plate. Let us share your voice on your behalf, so you don’t need to add more time to your busy schedule to write your own content marketing. Our strategists and creators will develop a plan to create engaging materials to represent your Thought Leader brand through your own specialized Thought Leadership Package.
Let us help you strengthen and broaden your consumer base for continued professional success. Book a call today.