What are the long-term benefits of using content marketing as a channel for link building? If you are involved in content writing, then you know this is a conversation that has been going on for a while. Without the right content type, any marketing strategy simply won’t work.
What does this mean?
Just like cars need gas to keep running, you will have to keep re-fuelling your marketing strategies and article writing skills to remain relevant. This begs the question; is there a way to fuel your marketing once, and keep it running for a longer duration - let’s say a month or so?
Take a survey on salary negotiations that was published on The Harvard Business Review. TechCrunch picked up this study, months after its publication and active promotion. The researcher did not ask TechCrunch to help in the article’s outreach; the writer simply came across the research and found it relevant.
So, what is the secret to fuelling your marketing strategy? The answer lies in creating content that acts as a wellspring.
The key is to come up with authentic information that people will find helpful, and want to link to in order to complement their own content writing. Many times, writers are seeking out relevant sources of information to add weight to their own arguments, or provide further insight to their readers. If your content attracts citations, then you have a great chance of receiving more passive links - free internet marketing, in other words - which keeps your articles active, and in the public consciousness for longer.
Read on for a more in-depth look at the types of content that are likely to garner citations. We will also be teaching you a few tips on how to create this kind of content yourself.
Authentic Research and Pristine Data
Posting content that features an original analysis is a very powerful way of earning yourself commandeering links through a PR outreach mechanism. Most of the content we write for our clients falls under this niche; however, that doesn’t mean that every citation our client might get is the direct result of our outreach.
Many links to our client’s research lobbies are as a result of syndication. Our syndication process involves getting a client’s lobby featured on an established site (what we’ll call “Site A”) that has an authoritative following. Here’s a layout of the syndication process:
Sending content pitch to a site that is authoritative and popular (Site A).
The site creates an article citing the content.
Another site (Site B) notices the content and creates an article linking to the same content.
Site C sees the same content (from either Site A or B, or perhaps both) and publishes an article with a citation to the same content.
The cycle goes on and on.
How will this help you earn long term citations? The secret lies in seeding the content strategically on authoritative sites via the syndication process and outreach. This leaves your content better placed to be easily found and referenced by other writers.
The original source (Site A) acts as the most appropriate citation for additional publishers as it appears to be the most appropriate source of information that will sell. This establishes a strong authority on Site A making it likely to receive more citations - as was the case in the TechCrunch example.
Analyzing Industry Trends and Performance Reports
I know, this may seem to contradict the “Authentic Research and Pristine Data” angle we’ve been pushing so far, but it has a specificity that you cannot overlook.
If there are likely to be changes, varying from year to year or through the months, this could be an opportunity to create reports highlighting the trends and cycles of the industry. This will create an opportunity to involve a collection of brands in your line while exhibiting your articulacy in the given subject.
Many people like to take note of trends and add their own opinions as to why they are so. Some also add their views on how to reap the most benefit from trends. That being the case, a citation of your content will always come in handy to support their claims.
Analyzing industry trends and performance reports creates the opportunity to anticipate future releases as a long-term benefit.
Suggestions on How to Use This Strategy
Surveying your customers.
They have been involved in your industry. Ask them related questions that will help you read their expectations, fears, encounters and requirements. This is a great way of narrowing speculation, as you get to discover exactly what they think of you and your business.
Using the company’s internal data.
This is without a doubt one of the best strategies. You have first-hand information based purely on your daily interactions with your clients. This data will create interest for people working in the same field. If they find it insightful and they can relate to it, why wouldn’t they cite it in their own content?
Surveying the industry.
There exist a number of companies in the same industry that do not necessarily compete directly with one another. These companies will have relevant information that can be helpful when examining the overarching industry. This wealth of information comes with a great deal of detail and clarity. Use it to your advantage and create content you can refer back to.
Creating Curated Resources
Carrying out research requires a huge time investment. However, if someone else collects a decent amount of information on the same subject, you could save yourself a lot of time.
If you have the will, you can earn links from putting together data and examples as a curated resource. For instance, you could come up with a comprehensive compilation of statistics and facts, or list concrete examples relating to a certain subject.
Tips on How to Create Curative Resources
Figure out what kind of information would be a valuable resource for professionals if compiled together. Ideally, this would be the same information that you find beneficial to your own business.
Filter through the comments to get an idea of what other professionals in the industry expect from you.
Find out what works for related companies that can also work for you.
Creating Content for Beginners
All experts were beginners at one time. Learning is a curve and there will always be someone who is at the early stages of learning. Expert content that can help newbies get familiar with the “how-to” is an unrivalled way of earning long-term links and citations.
How to Create Beginner Content
This involves creating content that answers the following questions:
What is the definition of (subject).
How (subject) works.
How to make it in (subject) for beginners.
Your beginner series should answer all questions that might arise.
This article is not a call to end outreach promotions or email marketing - far from it! It’s a call to enhance your marketing strategy, and make sure all of the promotional elements of your business are working in harmony. Work on getting your content listed on, or cited by, sites that hold authority and esteem in your chosen industry.
This way, you can be sure these sites will help drive more traffic to your business. As this happens, make a concerted effort to explore all the organic links available to get more links and citations to your content.
Remember that the more links your content has, the higher the likelihood of it reaching other people involved in article writing who will likely pick it up - as long as it adds value to their own publications.
Do you have a specific type of content you feel would be ideal for attracting links? We would love to hear from you. Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.