There's a lot of noise out there. With the advent of "content marketing," the general concept of using content to attract clicks has spread like wildfire. There are now millions of ebooks, webinars, and probably some Broadway plays about SEO optimization and getting more clicks. 68% of them (I just made that up) using "listicles" to attract our short attention spans.
We're starting to see a nasty trend of super low-quality content being generated. There seems to be a lot of hastily written content that may have nothing to do with creating value for the reader or your target persona. Empty blog posts using empty words that mean nothing to your audience will produce empty results. In May of 2017, 83 million posts were posted on Wordpress alone! That's a lot of posts noise.
I'm getting a little weary of seeing "The Top Ways to _________." Have I used a headline like that? Sure! I've tested the "headline template" waters. But, honestly, I try to back it up with some valuable information as well. With that being said, allow me to be the first to admit that not everything I write smells like roses. We all kind of suck sometimes. BUT, unstrategic, hastily written content is easy to recognize, and easier to forget. Blog posts, emails, or downloads that are written too quickly and thoughtlessly will bring little value to anyone. Not only that but if your content is void of real information or personality, is stuffed full of "SEO Keywords," or is copied from another site, your brand will suffer.
Craving a "listicle break"? Read "5 Reasons Listicles Are Here to Stay, and Why That's OK". It's actually pretty good. See, even Wired uses it, and that's OK.
Stick with Quality, Not Quantity (unless you can rock it)
The quality of our content is important, and creating good stuff accomplishes what many marketers attempt to do with worthless clickbait. Good, original content gets you higher on search engine results because Google is smart, and will reward you for solid writing. Google also recognizes empty or copied content and will penalize you for it.
The most important thing is creating original content that is delivered to your readers in the right way, and at the right frequency. You need not stress over getting 5 new blogs in your customer's inbox every week unless you can commit to that and still make it quality. I know our friends over at HubSpot want you to be content generating machines. I understand their logic. But please don't do it at the expense of your brand. Instead, focus on making sure that whatever blogs you send out are interesting and original enough that they will be read through to the end. And what’s even better is if you can get that reader to click a CTA (see what I did there?), sign up for future blog posts, or share your post via social media.
Quality content pays off. When you write a great, timeless blog, you can remarket it on different channels and send it out multiple times. You'll also create a reputation as being an intelligent, legitimate brand that is interested in creating a long-term relationship with its customers. This is worth a thousand empty blog posts.
Maybe this post should be titled "3 Reasons Why A Quality Blog Post Post is Worth 1000 Empty Ones?" Lemme know in the comments.
Shortcuts ≠ quality
There are no shortcuts in life, and there are no shortcuts in marketing. Even though a lot of business is done online these days, and even though content creation is considered a somewhat "new" phenomenon, advertising and marketing your product or service is the same as it has always been. Create a quality product and then focus on those 6 quality brand attributes I love to talk about so much. This is the timeless way to success, and this is what you should have in mind when you are marketing your brand.
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