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Content Marketing, Marketing

Rock Content Marketing: How to Double Website Traffic & Triple Customers [WEBINAR RECAP]

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Thanks to all the attendees of June webinar, Rock Content Marketing: How to Double Website Traffic & Triple Customers, with Kabbage’s own Jeanna Barrett, Head of Inbound & Content Marketing. If you missed the webinar, you can view the video playback on our Kabbage Kam Webinars YouTube Channel and view the slides on our SlideShare. Both the slides and video are also embedded at the bottom of this article for you as well.

Content marketing is the creation and sharing of content for the purpose of acquiring or retaining customers. Content marketing includes blogs, content on your website, newsletters, social media, eBooks and webinars. Essentially any content you create that will bring eyeballs to your web presence, and people to your business.

So what is the importance of your business doing content marketing? To provide another way for potential customers to find you. 81% of people search online when making purchasing decisions, which means they turn to search engines like Google. In fact, despite the availability of paid ads on Google, 80% of clicks in Google are from organic search results vs. paid ads. Google loves quality content because it improves their search results, so putting out great content for them to offer to their users helps position you in front of those who don’t even know that they’re looking for you. This is also a rich opportunity to position your company as a thought leader in your industry.

What does it mean to have a content strategy? Let’s take a look at three steps to get you on your way to rocking content marketing.

Content Strategy

Make sure you have a content management system (CMS)

A CMS is a web application that allows you to add, edit and manage your content. Options such as WordPress and SquareSpace are excellent options for small business owners, especially those who are unsure of their technical skills. Note: There is WordPress.com and WordPress.org. WordPress.org is for web developers, so be sure to use WordPress.com.

Host the blog on your website

It’s always better to host your blog on your own website, such as YourBusiness.com/blog rather than blog.yourbusiness.com.

Build a Customer Persona

To help shape your content, build a customer persona. If you had one person who represented the majority of your customers, who would they be? Are they a specific gender? How old are they? What are their interests? What obstacles are they facing that can be solved with your product or service? Why are they buying your product or service?

There are many traits you can assign to your customer persona to shape them into a representation of your audience, and help you better understand who you’re addressing when writing your content.

Build a Content Calendar

Think about a content calendar like a magazine you’re publishing. What are your regular monthly features?

  • Think of what categories you want to post – Because the Kabbage audience is small businesses, our categories are about subjects such as financial advice, marketing, employee management and growth, all as pertains to the small business.
  • Think of how many pieces of content you want to put out – Between blog posts, newsletters, guest posts on other blogs and websites, and premium content such as infographics and webinars, Kabbage puts out around 50 pieces of content each month. This may may be too much for you to tackle on your own, but define what your content volume goals are so to help shape your calendar.
  • Think of the types of content you want to put out: As mentioned above, Kabbage creates blog posts, newsletters, webinars, infographics, eBooks, and several other formats. Think about what makes sense for your business and your customers.
  • Carefully categorize your blog content with content pillars – Think about what categories you want to write about and then which subjects would fall under those. As you can see below, Kabbage’s content pillars focus on ways to support small businesses.

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  • Balance your content strategy – The content calendar will help you make sure you balance content themes, content buckets, content types and content categories to create a well-rounded content marketing strategy that will be compelling to your audience. Below is Kabbage’s content strategy that not only helps us keep the content calendar balanced, but also helps guide us when planning our content calendar each month.

content strategy

 

Brainstorm

After figuring out your content pillars, you’ll want to make a list of keywords relevant to your business and industry to use in your content. This is so that those searching for information on that subject will find your content.

To help you define your keywords, ask yourself the following:

  1. What are your business’ most valuable keywords?
  2. How would you describe problems your business solves?
  3. How do your customers talk about your product or service to others in blogs, articles, forums and social media?
  4. What do you think your ideal customers might type into Google when looking for a produc or service like yours?
  5. Are there specific products names you sell?
  6. What keywords do your competitors use on their sites and in their ads?

Use Google AdWords Keyword Tool

You can set up a free Google AdWords account to pull keywords. Once you’ve set it up:

  • In the “Word or Phrase” field at the top of the main section, paste all of the keywords you’ve generated
  • Leave “Website/Category blank
  • Do not click “Only show ideas closely related to my search terms”
  • Under “Match Types” in the left column, select “phrase”
  • Click “Search”

Be sure to:

  • Filter out keywords with too little or too much traffic
  • Delete keywords that have too much organic search competition
  • Delete keywords not relevant to your business

Google will then produce a list of keywords that are close to your brand that you may want to consider targeting. Once you have the full list, filter out keywords with too little traffic because not a lot of people are searching that term. Also filter out keywords with too much traffic because they’re likely too competitive. You want to find the middle ground of keywords with a good amount of volume, but that are not too competitive. Also delete keywords that are just not relevant to your business.

Create Your Content

Now that you have your content planned, it’s time to create it. At Kabbage, we take all of the content ideas we’ve brainstormed and schedule them in our content calendar.

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At Kabbage, we have several writers who work on our content, so we use a tool called Trello to help organize and manage our monthly content. There are several other free and inexpensive tools that can be used for this purpose, including SmartSheet and, if you’re using WordPress, CoSchedule.

Finding Help with Content

If you’re pressed for time to maintain a regular content calendar, or you want a robust content marketing strategy, you may want to consider hiring freelance content writers, or a full time content employee. There are a few websites where you can source inexpensive content:

  • Fiverr
  • Elance
  • Scripted
  • Job boards such as ProBlogger
  • College job boards

There are a few key things you’ll want to make sure you do when reviewing potential writers:

  • Negotiate prices that fit for your budget
  • Ask for examples of what they’ve written
  • Look for writers who might have an online following to help get the word out
  • Make sure to put a contract in place. Online legal resources such as RocketLawyer can help with this.

Pay Attention to Your Headline

Your headline is what people online will see first, and you want to make sure it makes them want to click through and read your whole article. As CopyBlogger.com wrote, “8 out of 10 will read your headline, but only 2 out of ten will read the rest of your content.”

While you don’t want clickbait, a tactic of using sensationalized headlines purely to generate a click, you’ll want to be sure that your headline is compelling enough to attract potential readers. This is a great list of words for writing emotional headlines, that are more likely to make people click on them.

PowerWords

 

 

Distribute Content

Once the content it is written, you want to get it out there so people can find it and read it. There are several ways of going about this:

  • Schedule social media posts with custom social images. You can create these images with free and inexpensive tools such as Canva and Pablo
  • Feature your content in an email newsletter
  • Build up your blog subscription list so users receive a notification every time you publish something new
  • Ask your employees to share, such as including a link in their content email signature
  • Leverage brand ambassadors – those who naturally love your business
  • Leverage social influencers – those who have already built an audience and who are influential to your audience
  • Share in LinkedIn groups for your industry

 

Measure Content

Measurement is important, but don’t let it get complicated and overwhelming. Choose 2-5 things you want to measure. Some options:

  • How much organic traffic/new users to site
  • How many people converted from content
  • What content was most read/shared
  • Keyword rank & change

Most content management systems provide analytics, and you can also use Google Analytics for free.

Five Takeaways From This Webinar

If you take away anything from this webinar, it should be:

  1. Create content that solves your customers’ challenges
  2. Incorporate keywords and basic SEO
  3. Create content consistently and utilize freelancers, if needed
  4. Hussle to distribute your content
  5. Keep measurement simple

We know that this is a lot of information, and we hope you found it useful and that it allows you to gain the confidence to rock content marketing for your small business.

Still have questions about content marketing? Let us know in the comments, on Twitter: @KabbageInc, or email us at webinars@kabbage.com. Sign-up for our free small business newsletter to get access to more webinars and marketing tips by entering your email in the form at the top of the sidebar of this blog.

Thanks for listening in! We hope to see you next time!

Download Kabbage’s complimentary small business content calendar template.

Want to see the webinar or share it with someone else?

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Kabbage Team

The Kabbage Team is here to not only fund the small business loans you need, but to help you grow your business through free marketing tips, webinars, tools and more. Is there something you'd like us to cover or want to get your small business featured on our blog? Send us a note at content@kabbage.com.

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