It’s not enough to settle for just another blog post with the occasional tweet: Here are the six most effective ways to increase traffic to your content
Content provides such a low cost, high reach and high impact way of connecting with your customers that it is changing the way we do business. However, it’s not enough to settle for just another blog post with the occasional tweet. It’s necessary to use your content to drive maximum traffic and tons of attention. Here are six content marketing hacks every startup can use to make their business stand out:
1. Shorten the process
The standard flow of users is that they read your blog, click a call to action, visit a landing page and finally fill out a form. What if you could simplify this process by eliminating some steps?
Recently, Hubspot conducted an experiment where they tried replacing call to action with a mini-landing page module. This module had an offer and contact form right on the blog. They found there was a 4 times increase on lead conversion due to the mini landing page module.
It may not be the best option for every offer and every company. However, you can easily test and measure this approach and see if it works for your business.
2. Modularize your content
Content marketers spend too much time creating content for a channel, then crafting it over and over again for each additional channel. It isn’t sustainable. We don’t have the time or resources for it, and we can’t afford this error-prone process. You can immensely increase the value of your content once you start creating it as a collection of modules such as the title, headings, key points, images, infographics, quotes, and summary. Then each module of your content can be re-used effectively and shared across multiple platforms. This will enable you to maximize its reach.
For example, you can run a series of interviews with your clients or industry thought leaders. Based on their answers, you can create a new article or series of articles. You can even take all answers to one question and write a post, and do this for each question.
3. Test your content with A/B Testing
It’s easier than ever to test your content, understand what the buyers want and refine your content strategy. A/B Testing is an amazing way to get quantitative insights into what works for your prospects and what doesn’t. You can not only test the messaging, headlines, formats and frequency but also different types of media. You can even test content with different groups at different points of their buying process.
If you test your content, your readers will indicate what they like by commenting, sharing, tweeting, and taking action (such as clicking). The content that generates the best results will tell you what type of content you should write in the future. The four most common elements to test in your content are headlines, images, opt-in forms and call-to-actions. Headlines and images can either attract or repel buyers. It is important to test them not just on blog posts, but also on landing, product, and sales pages. Similarly, you need to test opt-in forms and call-to-actions to understand which type of prospects prefer which type of content.
One of the simplest yet most effective content marketing hacks is to test the position of share buttons on your blog, and monitor which one boosts sharing. If your readers can’t find share buttons easily, they won’t be able to share your content. If they need to scroll to find your sharing button, they won’t be keen to share your post either. According to a study conducted by usability icon Jakob Nielsen, users read web pages in an F-shaped pattern: two horizontal stripes followed by a vertical stripe. So, you can have the button at the top or the page or bottom of the page, but users will find it easier at the top. In some cases, you can even keep them fixed to the side of your post.
4. Promote your content multiple times
It’s fine to promote your content on social media more than once. Networks like Facebook and Twitter actually require it for your content to be effective. One of the easiest ways to grow the number of readers for each post is simply to share it more often. For example, Tom Tunguz (VC at Redpoint) conducted an experiment to measure the content effectiveness due to recirculation of tweets. He found that with each subsequent Tweet of an existing blog article, he got about 75% as many Retweets as the time before.
Just like sending out emails, it’s important that you pick the most suitable times to promote your content in order to maximize its impact and results. Depending on your audience and social network, you can identify three to four peak times to share your content. You can find out these peak times by looking into the insights on your social pages or using social tools such as Followerwonk. Guy Kawasaki is known for sharing the same blog post multiple times, and one reason he provides for doing this is to reach your followers in different time zones.
5. Make your content more shareable
It’s important to make it easy for your readers to share your content. I’m not talking about the social sharing buttons. Many times, readers get the urge to share your content when they come across an insightful statement, a quote, a cool infographic or a takeaway in your post. Are you placing sharing options within your content? WordPress plugins like Click To Tweet let you make the content in your post shareable with a simple click. They act as important triggers that you can use to get your readers to share content for you.
6. Refactor your content for multiple platforms
There are so many different formats and platforms for creating and promoting your content that modern content marketers need to think beyond their blog. Here are a few ideas:
- Podcasts and audio content
- Udemy course, or Skillshare
- Slideshow on SlideShare or Scribd
- Quora, or other Q&A sites
- Forum contributions
It is important to remember that our content is always connected to us and will improve our brand awareness no matter where it is present. To get the most out of your content, you need to refactor it to suit the platform and audience. For instance, if you know five tips about growing sales, you can write a blog about it and post it on Facebook and Twitter, answer questions about it on Quora or other forums, create a presentation and add it to LinkedIn or make a video about it and upload it to YouTube.
Knowing your audience and understanding what they want and how they like consuming it can help you create content worth sharing and that stands out from the rest.
The views expressed are of the author.
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