Using only sound Content Marketing strategy – how would you grow your website from 0 to 3000 visitors in a month?
This was the question our team contemplated on when we were sipping on low alcoholic beer one night and also the reason this article was born.
Why 3000 and why only content marketing? 3000 visitors means only 100 visitors a day which we think is a very achievable for a brand new website. While a content marketing strategy via blogging is a low cost, highly effective way to get new clients that anyone can do.
For those of you with thousands of visitors per month, congratulations but this article may not be for you.
In this article we want to focus on what we would do if we had to start over again. In its entirety, we will outline each process and steps of how we would do it from scratch.
This means no previous marketing efforts, limited resources and no industry connection to gain PR and link juice from.
This is not a Superman story, this is a story about how Iron Man got his armour.
Content Marketing Strategy and Inbound Marketing Strategy Overview
Content marketing is a form of inbound marketing. This means it is designed to draw visitors and customers in rather than reaching out directly to them such as with telemarketing and cold calling. It is designed to answer customer questions or get their attention to want to go to your website.
Content marketing works hand in hand with SEO ( Search Engine Optimisation) because great content are more likely to be ranked higher on search engines and through SEO, your content marketing results are greatly enhanced.
So, when you are doing content marketing via a blog article, social post, or video, keep SEO at the back of your mind and you will reap greater results.
What are the Benefits of Content Marketing
Content Marketing has many benefits over traditional outbound marketing – the main ones being higher conversion and closing rates and lower cost per lead.
Customers come to you
The main draw of content marketing is that your customers come to you. This means higher quality of leads. It’s no longer a numbers game or cold calling 100 people to get one meeting.
Lower cost of leads
Historically, content marketing cost less for each sales lead generated than traditional marketing. This is due to content marketing working 24/7. Once you have your content ranking on the first page of Google or Bing, you can expect consistent results for a long time.
The fact that you’re reading this article now is content marketing strategy working its magic.
Content Marketing Strategy Process
Content Marketing works best as a methodical process. Simply writing out an article on the top of your head will not do. You need to write for your audience. You need to plan and research your article ideas, use good content marketing practices and finally promote the article so people actually read or view it.
By the end of the article, you will have learnt how to attract 3000 new visitors to your blog or website.
“Write for your audience”
Researching Your Content
To be able to gain 3000 visitors, you first have to have enough content to generate that many viewers.
To make things easier, we will use an example with an imaginary company that specialises in surfboards.
For topics to write about there a few free tools that you can use and they are:
We will create a new spreadsheet to keep track of everything. In the headings we will have Article title, Keywords, estimated monthly search, competition and publication date.
It’s important to stick to your publication schedule. For new websites, ideally you want to publish 2-4 in-depth articles per month. Yes, this will mean you will write every single day.
How do we know if we will be getting 3000 visitors a month?
This is when Google Ads (formerly Google Adwords) come in. Google Ads have a free nifty tool called Keyword Planner that can tell us an estimate of monthly searches. You just need to register for a Google Ads account.
You may hear people recommend writing on the topics you’re passionate about. That’s not entirely accurate – you need to write the topics that you are passionate about AND something your audience will read. Google Keyword Planner will let you know if people will be interested in your article.
With Google Ads Keyword Planner Tool, you can clearly see the keywords and its average monthly searches. You can ignore the competition rating for now because it only shows competitive results for paid search ads.
What we are looking for are high monthly search but comparatively low competition keywords.
“ Look for high monthly search but low competition keywords”
It doesn’t have to be the exact keywords. For example, if you search for ‘best seo agency’, you will also have other results shown such as ‘how to choose the best seo agency’ as shown below.
In our case, if we write an article titled ‘how to buy a used surfboard’, it will rank for the keywords ‘used surfboards’.
** Note: Google Ads Keyword Planner should be used as an estimate only. Due to the large variations of long key phrases, Google tries its best to match those to easier keywords. Semantic search also means Google will try to match searcher’s intent as well as keywords.
How do you come up with article titles and content ideas? There are many tools for this but a free tool to use is Answer the Public. So we just type in ‘used surfboards’ in the search bar and we have a number of ideas as seen below:
Add those ideas into our spreadsheet.
Do this for all the relevant keywords based on your keywords research previously. You’ll end up with a filled sheet with plenty of topics and ideas.
The next step is to determine what to write first.
Go through your spreadsheet and label the depth of each article between 1-3 where:
1: articles with less than 1000 words
2: articles between 2000 and 3000 words
3: articles with 3000+ words
Statistically, number one page articles have an average word count of 1,900 so choose 3-4 articles with 2000 words and start from there.
Content Marketing Strategy Competitive Research
Before we get down to writing our masterpiece, we first need to research to see what we’re up against. There’s no point in writing a masterpiece if it’s not going to be seen.
There are a number of ways to know the competitiveness of a page by analysing:
- Page Authority and Domain Authority
- Backlinks and quality of backlinks and social shares
- If page is SEO optimized
- Check if content is in-depth
- Check for technical on-SEO – page load speed, mobile optimised, easy to share
We will use option 1 for this article for the sake of simplicity. It is by no means the most comprehensive but it goes beyond this article to do an in-depth analysis of all of the above methods.
While there are a number of tools we can use we will go with MozBar since it’s free and easy to set up.
Type in your article keywords and you will get a result similar to the below:
For newer website, it’s best to stick with PA and Da of less than 20, ideally 10 if you want your article to be on the first page.
Before We Begin our Blog Article
Before we dive into writing our blog article, we first need to do some research on popular websites and blogs that are similar to ours but are not directly competing with us. For our imaginary surfboard store this could mean blogs from surfers, blogs about surfboards, surfing news websites etc…
Make a note of these websites in another spreadsheet titled ‘similar websites and blogs’. When you begin writing your content marketing article, try to mention these sources in your article and link to them.
There are two reasons we want to do this. First, by using outbound links we give a signal to search engines on what your article is about and second, we want to gain their favour so they can link back to us.
Links are what gives a page authority to rank high. They are like real world recommendations and referrals.
Writing Your Content Marketing Article
SEO and a good content marketing strategy go hand in hand.
For SEO copywriting and content marketing to be effective, you need to forget everything you learnt about writing in school.
Good SEO copywriting follows a process that places emphasis on readability and technical SEO.
Tip: If your website is built on WordPress, download Yoast SEO plugin to review and optimise your content so it gets found easier on search engines.
According to Yoast SEO guideline great readability and technical SEO follow the rules:
- Content is easy to read
- Have short paragraphs
- Keep your sentences short – <25% maximum for long sentences more than 20 words
- Use active voice and keep passive voice to a minimum to 10%
- Use accurate subheadings
- Do not have repeated keywords/duplicate data
- Focus keywords appear in first paragraph
- Content have keyword density of about 2-2.5%
- Correct use of Meta description
- Have some Internal links
- SEO title contains keyphrase
- Contains image with alt attribute
- In-depth article with 300 words or more
- Have some related outbound links
- A short slug or URL length
- Contain keywords in URL/slug
While you don’t have to follow the rules exactly, it can be beneficial to incorporate them into your own style of writing.
Create a Compelling Email Capture Content Upgrade
We should always have a call to action on our articles. What do we want our visitors do after reading your article? With any good content marketing strategy, it’s not to sell things but to get people to spread the word and get them to come back.
One way of doing this is to get their emails so every time you have new material, you get them to return to your site.
An easy way of getting their emails is through a content upgrade or a lead magnet. A content upgrade is content that is related to the content your viewers are currently reading. This could be a related pdf file, an infographic or related offer.To access that content, viewers will have to enter in their email address.
It works because your visitors are already interested in your article so it makes sense they want to get the maximum value out of it.
Content Marketing Promotion
Promoting your content is arguably the most important step in any content marketing strategy. It is through promotion that you get views, social shares and precious backlinks, all of which are very important factors for SEO success.
Below are some of the ways to promote your content for a new business and they are:
Existing Email Database
An oldie but a goodie, email is still one of the most cost effective ways to promote your content. Email your content to people who you think will find value.
Remember the list of other related, non-competitive blogs and websites you mentioned in your article earlier? Now’s the time to make use of them. Email its authors and casually let them know. Remember not to make it a big deal and ask for too much. If your content is good, they’ll know what to do.
*Tip: Use an email marketing app such as Mailchimp to mass emails. If you use your own email client and receivers mark it as spam, you may get your email address spam filtered in the future.
Social media can help you spread the word on your content.
If you are active on social media, you may be surprised how many people are interested in what you have to say or even willing to help you spread the word.
It may also be worthwhile to spend a little to get the ball rolling through paid ads.
Blogs and Forums
While some forums are nofollow (meaning they pass no PageRank or link value), it may still be worthwhile to get your content and brand out there for popular related blogs and forums.
Whirlpool and Reddit have tens of thousands of members who may be interested in what you have to say. If it catches on, you can get 3000 visitors a month in no time.
*Tip: Remember the idea is to help people not shamelessly promote your blog or website otherwise it can backfire on you.
How To and Q & A websites
If your article contains answers to popular questions, it may also be worthwhile to post them on popular Q&A websites like Quora and Yahoo Answers.
Guest Posting provides a reliable way of getting backlinks to your content and blog.
The chief purpose of guest posting is to link back to your own blog to increase your search rankings so you don’t have to spend as much time on these as you would on your own articles.
From your initial list, identify articles that may be sub articles from the one you’ve written but not as in-depth. These can include hard to rank articles that have good monthly searches.
For blogs and websites that you mentioned them previously in your articles, you can go back to that list and email them for guest posting and backlinking opportunities.
Guest Blogging Etiquette
Make It Good
While guest posting articles shouldn’t be your most in-depth articles, they should still provide a lot of value for its readers.
Don’t Link Spam
When guest posting, try to ink to your original article in a natural style. One or two mentions is enough.
Be on Time
If you’re guest blogging on a popular site, chances are it will stick to a strict schedule. If you want to be known as the ‘go to guy’ then you need be punctual.
Spread the Love
Guest blogging should be about partnership. If your guest blogging website don’t have a lot of readers yet, help them spread the word and they will love you.
If your content is good, there are chances that your article may rank for other keywords as well. For example, for an article “ How to collect vintage surfboards”, you may also rank for “how to find vintage surfboards” which may have the potential to attract more visitors to your site.
If that’s the case, you may want to update your article title.
Another reason to update your article is if you have upgraded content to an existing article. This is especially valuable for industries that are constantly changing like IT or Online Marketing.
Rinse and Repeat
Now all you have to do is rinse and repeat for all the articles ideas we established.
There you have it – the entire process of content marketing via blogging to attract 3000 new visitors to your website in one month.
We covered the research process where we look for valuable keywords that have high monthly searches and relatively low competition. We brainstormed, prioritised articles and composed a publishing schedule. We identified the key components to an SEO optimised article.We then finally outlined some great resources for content marketing promotion.
All there left is to keep the ball rolling. With content marketing, you need to be consistently putting out good information that your subscribers will be eager to come back to and share. It is hard work but once you keep the momentum going, it is one of the most effective.