In the world of content marketing, social sharing seems to be key. But is it the only metric that marketers need to be focusing on or is it in danger of being a red herring?
The Value of Content
It's a truism to say that the value of content should not be underestimated in today’s world of increasingly digitised business. Yes, content marketing is the hype and buzz of the minute and it looks set to stay – albeit in an ever-evolving form.
There is no doubt that businesses which are investing heavily in their marketing activity need to be prepared to have skilled copywriters at a marketing agency on hand to produce regular, on-brand and engaging content that captures the imagination and interest of existing and potential customers and helps to drive conversions. However, what happens next?
All too often, a beautifully crafted piece of content is finally signed off after a fairly prolonged internal process, and it gets published on a blog and shared as widely as possible across social media sites – it's done, social media strategy delivered, game over. Marketers do this and then sit back and wait for the shares, likes, retweets and comments to flood in.
Social Shares Work – However…
There is no doubt that social sharing is great for your business – no one would deny this. But for your content to have real results, and by this we mean measurable conversions, it needs to have a greater lifespan and more powerful traction than pure social media can provide. This is where link building comes in.
Why Link Building?
The marketing industry is often very hesitant about link building, as it tends to have negative connotations from run-ins with Google's algorithm updates. The Panda algorithm updates especially led to a number of big websites becoming discredited and heavily penalised when spam-ridden 'link farms' were shut down and all irrelevant and paid-for links immediately discounted.
However, this isn't to say that link building is dead by any means or that Google wants to erase it. Used correctly with white-hat methods, it is a viable and valuable means of driving forward quality traffic to your digital presence.
For more on how to create better links more efficiently read our blog
How Do You Earn Links?
The focus nowadays is on quality, and of course, this is the entire point of Google's algorithm. It exists to weed out dodgy black-hat techniques that drive customers erroneously to content they don't actually want to see – poor-quality and spammy content. Google wants its customers to find what they are looking for when they perform a search – relevant quality content that answers their question as closely as possible.
For an SEO agency or in-house marketing team, this means that the social media strategy must start to consider search engine optimisation more closely. The trick lies in building meaningful relationships with online influencers. Produce content that creates value. Share it meaningfully and in a considered way, and extend the courtesy where your brand consumes relevant content. Be mindful and always keep value at the front of your mind, as you would in a face-to-face interaction. Essentially, network online, do it well and do it carefully and your brand's online presence will reap the benefits.
Atelier is a digital marketing agency in Hampshire. Should you have any questions about content marketing strategies you can turn to us for help. Get in touch!