More and More Content
Quality written content is one of the keys to getting more of your website crawled and indexed by search engines and then being seen as an authority in your market. Quality content is important; as is enough of it to be effective. 300-500 words is ideal (We’ve tested and usefully longer -is- better. It ranks higher and gets more traffic)
Also very important is more relevant topics creating more pages. Websites need content and lots of it!
Most small business websites are 6 pages with very little written content. Sites like these, especially if they are up against bigger, more developed competitors (and this is increasingly the case), are impossible to get high rankings for a wide variety of keyword searches. There just isn’t enough material!
Our small to medium sized business clients are busy people. So how can we simplify the process and make it as easy as possible to get more effective content produced that will help their business? Below is a process that we use internally that helps our clients take care of this. My thanks to Alex Mandossian who has been talking about this for a long while!
There are a lot of advantages to using a system like this. It requires a low time commitment for you (or our client), you talk quicker than you write, it can produce a lot of content when you get on a roll, and it’s quality content that is keyword rich – resulting in more traffic!
Step 1 – It always starts with keyword research
In Google: start typing questions. (For now Bing doesn’t work as well for this.) You have a local garage or you’re a dentist… Go to Google and begin searching for (ford) air conditioning problems or “what is cosmetic dentistry” etc. Don’t Hit Enter! Check out the suggestions that are generated. Note these (use a screen capture tool) and now you’ve got some starting topics.
What makes this tactic effective is that right away you know you are writing about what people are actually searching for. There is no point in writing on topics where there is no interest, right?
Other free keyword tools to use to get ideas from:
Wordtracker Keyword Questions
Type in a topic and this will return the most asked questions… the challenge is that it returns a fair amount of junk, so it does take time to edit this to a useable list.
Type in a term and it suggests other related search terms. Use these as idea starters.
The search engines have other tools (look on the left side): for instance the Google Wonder Wheel will give you related searches in a graphical format; or the Timeline will show you which time frame searches are being conducted for -i.e. There are many searches for “ford air conditioning problems” centred around 1975.
Step 2 – Easy Content Production
The two main ways to produce this content are: a. Hire a copywriter to produce an article; b. Get a subject matter expert to produce it.
In most cases, the expert version is far more effective and valuable. The hangup is that they (you) don’t have the time (or habit skills) to produce written content.
Here’s the secret of getting the content produced:
Option 1: If you are a good speaker, record answers to the questions. We send our clients the questions and they record answers and send the audio back. Very easy to do with a smartphone!
Option 2: If prompting works better (…and ensures it gets done!) use a Google Voice or Skype account; the key is to be able to record calls. Get someone to call and ask you the questions. In our case, at an arranged time, the client calls the Google Voice number and are asked questions from the research in step 1. Recorded calls are downloaded.
For extra points of usefulness, create a format ahead of time. Have a defined process and stick to it.
Step 3 – Transcription and Repurposing
Email the recordings to a third party to transcribe. Using a quality transcription service will save a lot of editing time.
However, here is where preparation makes a difference and having a set format pays off.
If the call produces a good sounding interview, you can repurpose this in a number of ways; as audio, as a podcast and/or as the sound track for slide show videos. That content in all forms can go on your website or blog as well as be distributed online, getting high value links and traffic from podcast directories (list of many podcast directories), video distribution sites, content sites (like www.scribd.com; www.docstoc.com; issu.com; slideshare.net; authorstream.com; etc.), and with some massage (like creating an excerpt and shortlink) on social media like Facebook and Twitter.
One of these a week will create thousands of high value links a year to your website! Produce enough content to get 3 posts a week or more and you get hundreds of thousands of links each year. This is how to be dominant in your niche.
To save time, get the transcription formatted as a post for a blog with headlines and bullets – make it easy to read and people will read it. This probably will require a 2 step process; someone to transcribe (cheaper), and someone to format.
There is plenty of information on formatting for readability, here’s one of my favorites…
How to format a blog post by Problogdesign
The advantage of this system is that you have most of the work done in minimum time on your (or our clients) part.