Over the past couple of days, I talked about Google Grants and other CPC search engine tactics for driving people to your site.
But nothing beats getting people to your site without paying for them (or Google paying for them for you). That’s where having quality content coming in.
There are three layers to having quality content in the sense that I’m using it – content that gets you to the conversion you are looking for.
First, the content has to be attractive to machines. That is, a person looking for the content has to be able to find it on the Internet through search engines. There is a whole science to this called search engine optimization and plumbing its depths is a topic for another time. However, you can get a good portion of the way there by looking the keywords that you’ve selected for your CPC ads. Focus on how many times they are searched for and how well they convert for you. From this, you should get a strong perspective on the types of content people are looking for and what they want answered. You can then write that content, using the keywords that people use to find such content.
I use write here even though there are other types of content that are not in written form. However, to be searched for effectively, there should be some sort of written aspect that corresponds to your video, audio, picture, etc. Search engines deal best with the written word.
Second, the content has to be attractive to people. This probably goes without saying, but your content has to be on a valuable topic and written well.
Having attractive imagery or people in your ad will likely also help.
Thanks for the assist, Chris.
Third, the content has to make a person want to take the next step. What that next step is is up to you. You can approach it either with the end in mind (“I want people to email their legislators through our advocacy system; what would make them want to do that?”) or from what is in the content (“I have this white paper here on the dangers of bovine flatulence; what would be a logical thing to do as a result of this”) – either way works. The latter is good for a content audit: collecting all of your assets and determine their use. However, if you are starting from scratch, it’s probably best to have the end in mind when you set virtual pen to virtual paper, lest you write a great piece that don’t achieve your goals.
While I’ve done quite a few blog posts here on the site now with little else, it doesn’t really pay to have the same type of content or same type of next step over and over. Varying your content types is a good way not only to prevent your constituents from getting board, but also segmenting your constituents for the future – e.g., this cluster like action alerts, these like surveys, etc.
I mention action alerts and surveys, because these are two generally nicely converting content types, because their existence is set up to cause people to interact with them. Others include polls, pleas to share your story, petitions, contests, etc – anything with a form on it or a question is going to be a bit better at capturing constituents than anything without.
Speaking of, I’ve been writing mostly on things that interest me; what interests you? I’d love to do a day or a week on the topics that would be more valuable to you. Simply leave a note in the comments below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.