Using the News to help with Content Marketing and SEO

Frustrated blogger

Knowing what to blog about, to create content about every day is a bit of a task. It’s hard, but it’s not impossible. Of course you need content that works rather than the filler that most other blogs and websites churn out. You need to create content for people rather than the Google bot.

One effective way to keep the content ideas fresh, is to create content around the news.

The news has a few things going for it from a content marketers perspective.

  • It changes every day
  • People talk about it on social media
  • People hunger for more detail about a specific news story
  • Not all news is bad, negative or depressing

There are many examples of succesful content marketers surfing this news wave every day. It’s not exactly newsjacking, that’s another thing, but it is using that jump off point of the news to further the narrative.

Examples of last week include fly tipping in Essex, the latest Kim Kardashian story (remember your content is competing with Kim Kardashian’s Ass), Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Halloween, and lets not forget Star Wars.

Black Friday was interesting, especially in the UK. There were a large number of people in the “megh” camp, who just couldn’t be bothered to get excited about saving money on a bargain. And even in Cornwall the excitement was in the barely bothered camp.

I talked to traders about this, Bakery 46 and Near and Far Nepalese Clothing and Bakery 46 both said it was pretty much like any other Friday and not much difference. You may argue that such small traders cannot climb onto the Black Friday wagon, but there there is news there is content marketing opportunities and small traders can absolutely benefit from a relatively cheap form of marketing.

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Feeding Content to the most Ravenous of Content Hungry Fans

Star Wars 2015

I am sure you don’t need me to tell you that the new Star Wars movie is out next year.

But what are your plans to take advantage celebrate this event to benefit your website?

I shall be looking at how this can be done in the next few months. But let me be clear that this is not about dangling your brand message in front of a Stars Wars hungry mob, but to enable your marketing push to create content that satisfies that hunger. You may not be able to do this unless you are a fan or can model the mindset of the fan.

I fully expect a number of highly paid marketing execs to be ripped apart by the ravenous hordes when they get this wrong.

It’s going to be an interesting time.

Why SEO Training for Beginners is still needed

School Bus

Admit it.

Do you always roll your eyes when an SEO blogger starts with something like, “I’ve been building websites since….”

I used to, I don’t now.

Because that long view is incredibly valuable, offset of course by dissipation of hunger and passion and a reduction of energy.
I will leave for another blog post, just why it’s valuable to have a couple of grey beards hanging with the 20 something hipster types that form the bulk of people doing SEO.

I’ve been building websites and getting them ranked since 1998, of course this only means something if you keep current.

If an SEO sales person says any of the following. you should kick them out of the door.

  • Your website needs keyword Meta tags
  • You need to nofollow every external link
  • We can submit your website to search engines and not just Google but 1000’s of others
  • You need to have a 2.4% (or any number) of keyword density on your page
  • I’m expert in this great piece of software that can generate 200 links a day on forums

and for more check out the links below.

Yes I realise some of my black hat friends will tell me some of this stuff still works (I wont tell you which) for throwaway websites, but this blog is about helping long term, branded websites get ranked, and a blackhat technique, whilst still valid in certain situations is not valid here.

When you look at something as simple as internal link structure and sites that use drop down menus to facilitate a good flow of link equity with correct anchor text, you notice a lot of sites get this basic stuff wrong, something that grahamplumbersmerchant.co.uk, EnviroSkipHire.com, spcomputers.net. and the pirouettethecollection.com. get right. To give just a few examples. It’s interesting to take a random look at a bunch of websites and see who is implementing best practice design and SEO and who is not.

Now I am not saying that for a website to rank it has to have a drop down menu structure that has correct anchor text. But it sure does help and I would argue that for a relatively cheap win a website should look at being designed around this structure. Personally as a user of websites, I love the drop down menu, perhaps a usability expert such as Kim Krause Berg could tell us the impact on usability with this technique.

Even after all this time, certain techniques that died out nearly 10 years ago are still being promoted by people in the industry. I put this down to a mix of laziness and the fact they can get away with it. It’s not the buyers fault of course, but due diligence needs to be done. There are still plenty of SEO sharks out there and you don’t want to become bait.

Training and education are essential to anyone performing SEO and it’s not about reading one book or taking one course, because you need to learn to differentiate between the silver tongued devils telling you the garbage in the above list, compared with the gold in the link below. You need time and a number of occurrences before you can accurately differentiate who is pulling a fast one and who knows their apples

9 Outdated SEO Techniques Still Practiced Today
10 Old SEO Methods You Need to Stop
Five Outdated SEO Tips: How Not to Optimize Your Website
5 outdated SEO practices you should avoid
25 Outdate SEO Terms & Tactics VS Their Modern Alternatives
5 Outdated SEO Tactics You’re Probably Still Using

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Best Cafe in Truro

Truro Arts Cafe

The best Cafe in Truro has to be the Truro Arts Cafe.

And no I am not linking to them because they are my client and they are paying me. But because I really like the place and the people there.

Remember when you used to do that, wrote about something you liked and linked to it and Tweeted about it for no commercial gain?

Old school blogging.

Miss that.

Now it’s mostly monetised and the corporate execs who are passionate about their brand until the recruitment guru calls with offer of a new gig, have got there greying, scabby little talons into that cool little concept of writing about stuff simply because you love it.

But then again, we all have to pay the bills and no matter how many retweets your blog post will get, it probably wont fill your pockets with enough cash to buy the latest GoPRO Cam or the new Phantom Drone.
See what I did there?

Will you please start linking again to stuff you love and stop being scared of Google dropping a huge pile of deffecant on your head for doing so.

New Lego Mini Figures 12 are out now

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And they look so good, I have my eyes on the Babarian.

You may be thinking, “but what does lego have to do with getting people to go to my website?”

I started writing out the answer and then realised it’s a huge bit of content that I will release in a better form than a blog post.

Sign up for “How Lego can help your Content Marketing”, on the email list.

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