Business owners are beginning to realize the value of content marketing and understand that they need to put together a strategic campaign, but many just aren’t sure where to begin. Sound familiar? If so, this article is for you.

With our next three blog articles, we’ll give you step-by-step directions on how to start a content marketing plan that will improve your website SEO.

Step One: Determine your goals and outline a content marketing strategy that aligns with those objectives. 

It’s tempting to skip to the “fun stuff” (creating content and interacting with your target demographic), but unless you know exactly who your customers are and what they want from you, you could be firing arrows into the dark. Consider these points to illuminate and define your target.

  • Conduct keyword research
  • Consider both core and long-tail topics
  • Utilize your intuition
  • Research related topics, too

The point of keyword research is to direct your content creation. When you include the right keywords in your blog articles, you will drive more traffic to your site by improving the odds of those articles appearing in search results.

Start by asking yourself which keywords a prospective client might use to find your business online. For example, if you’re a plumber in Lansing, Michigan, the most obvious keywords for your business would be “plumbing”, “plumber”, “plumbing service”, and so on. Those are your core keywords.

Long-tail keywords tend to be three or four word phrases, and they typically describe exactly what the customer wants to purchase. Using our example above, a standard long-tail keyword might be “water heater installation in Lansing, Michigan” or “water heater installation in Lansing.”

These keywords are fairly obvious, but you can uncover even more valuable keywords by utilizing your intuition about your target demographic. What types of questions might they ask pertaining your business, products, or service? Related topics might include, “replace copper pipes”, “repair septic tank”, or “troubleshoot water heater”.

By considering these keywords as jumping-off points for content, you can appeal to potential customers who are already seeking very specific information (which you can then provide to them, of course). Then, by incorporating these keywords and keyword phrases into your website and blog content, you give yourself a better opportunity to be found online.

Hopefully these ideas will help you brainstorm content ideas for your marketing campaign. In our next article, we will discuss ways to create that content with maximum appeal to your audience.

If you have questions about keywords, contact us for more information, and don’t forget to follow along with this series; by the end, you will benefit from complete instructions for building a successful content marketing campaign that will also improve your website SEO.