In the marketing world, content will always be queen or king. What you produce digitally—whether it’s your website, a weekly blog, catchy videos, or Instagram posts—tells the world what you and your business are all about. But did you ever wonder how, exactly, the internet is driven by “organic” content, also known as search engine optimization (SEO)? And how can you curate content to gain more clients?
Organic Search Results vs Paid Ads
In basic terms, SEO is the process of improving your website to increase visibility when people search for terms related to your business. It involves doing some research to determine what keywords people are currently using to find your website, and incorporating those keywords into your content. For example, if someone searches for “best facial” or “laser hair removal near me” they will get both organic results (the top websites that naturally match their search keywords), as well as paid listings (sponsored ads tied to those keywords). Paid listings are also called “pay per click” ads because every time someone clicks on them, the person or business who posted the ad will be charged a set fee. Many people say paid listings remain an effective marketing tool; others argue that most people will not click on them because they simply don’t seem objective (i.e., why click on something when it’s obvious someone spent money to put it in front of you?) Whether someone clicks on your website organically or as the result of a paid ad, one thing is certain, content rules.
Keep It Simple, Sweetie
Whether you’re trying to get someone to click on your website, open up your email, respond to your text, or read your post on social media, it’s important to understand that people crave content that is offered in bite-sized pieces. Everyone is short on time these days and our attention spans have gotten even shorter. For emails, keep your subject line to about nine words or 60 characters; texts should be no longer than about 160 characters and social media posts should be about 130-150 characters (with five to nine hashtags on Instagram to increase engagement).
It’s okay to repurpose your content across multiple media channels. For example, you might post a special you’re running on Instagram and send out a similar special by email and/or text. It’s unlikely that the same customers will see all your media channels in the same day, though it’s still a good idea to change up your title or headline to keep things fresh. If you see someone else’s content that you like, take inspiration from it and rewrite something similar in your own words (of course, be very careful not to plagiarize). Even better, give that person a shout out for inspiring you to write something on the same subject.
Another idea is to take someone else’s longer article, post, or even book and write a brief summary (again, giving credit to the original author). Book summaries have become very popular these days, emphasizing our shortened attention spans. We tend to think that consumers want to know everything, but in actuality, they want to know the highlights. In other words, less is often more.
There are many ways to get in front of your customer, but keep in mind that everyone is bombarded by content. Spend some time thinking about your specific customer and the type of content that she or he would most likely enjoy. Consistently curate your content so that it’s fresh, interesting, and offers something of value to the viewer.
Louis “The Laser Guy’s” Three Additional Tips for Curating Content for More Clients:
- Always include a call to action—add a deadline to your special and provide an immediate opportunity for the reader to call, text or click on your website.
- Think of your content in terms of newspaper headlines. How can you word it so that it jumps out at the reader in the fewest words possible? Play around with it and solicit feedback from friends and co-workers before sending it out.
- Keep a spreadsheet of what you’re sending out and when; viewers will quickly tune you out if you keep sending the same basic content.