According to a study in 2014, over 2 million blog posts get published every single day. This figure is expected to have increased much more in the last couple of years.
The sheer volume of content available on the internet today has made the job of a content marketer that much harder. This challenge is amplified by an increase in focus on analytics that assesses the ROI of every article you publish. Quite frankly, very few businesses have cracked the code on content marketing.
I have been advising companies on content marketing for over six years now. During this time, we have seen a dramatic shift in the way content gets published and consumed. Five hundred worded articles were fairly adequate a few years back. They do not make the cut anymore.
The Triad Strategy
One of the most effective strategies in maximizing content marketing ROI is the Triad. The objective of this strategy is to publish content that meets any one of these three goals
Gain backlinks – the content you publish should focus on being highly resourceful that it brings new backlinks to your site
Go viral – your content should trigger an emotional response from the reader who is motivated to share this on social media
Increase conversions – the content you publish should directly contribute towards conversions
An ideal content marketing strategy is one where each piece of content can be attributed to one of these three specific objectives.
Establishing Triad Type
The time and resources you invest in creating content do not have to necessarily be distributed equally among these three content types. Your strategy must be determined by the industry you belong to and the unique objectives of your business.
For example, if you are in the construction industry, it is very unlikely to see clients coming to you from Google. Investing in backlink content should thus be kept to a minimum. On the other hand, if you are a business with a single product, you do not have to invest too many resources in conversion-focused content. Targeting SEO and social media would be a better idea.
There are dozens of content strategies targeted at building backlinks. Among these, I have found two strategies to be extremely effective.
Resource aggregation – This includes comprehensive articles about statistics and studies related to your industry. For instance, an online collaboration service could publish an article about ‘online collaboration statistics’. Writers love to link out to statistics and research reports underlining their argument and such content pieces are a good way to build links.
Industry quotes – Another type of content that writers love linking to from their articles are quotes from industry leaders that support their argument. Comprehensive content pieces gathering quotes from dozens of influencers from your industry is a great way to attract backlinks.
Facebook and Instagram are perhaps the two most popular social media channels today. According to a Statista report, between 60% to 80% of mobile users in the United States access these social platforms. It is worth investing in a social media platform that provides your content marketing with the highest engagement. Although platforms like Facebook and Twitter are better for content marketing, it is worth remembering that engagement on Instagram is vastly higher with time spent on the platform rising 80 percent each year.
In addition to these social networks, you may also seek other platforms depending on your industry and audience profile. Websites like LinkedIn, Reddit or niche networks like SalesGravy are some of the popular platforms here.
When it comes to virality over platforms like Facebook, there are a few handy pointers on what causes content to go viral.
- Positive articles gain more traction than negative ones
- Invest in content that can generate an emotional response from the reader
- The content you build should be resourceful and worthy of being shared
Getting viral on Instagram can be tricky for two reasons. Firstly, this is a platform that focuses primarily on visuals. It is thus not ideal for promoting blog posts. Secondly, Instagram does not encourage hyperlinks from their submissions.
Your Instagram marketing strategy should hence focus on engagement. There are a few ways to do this.
Invest in a rich bio: The only place on Instagram where you are allowed to share a clickable URL is the bio section of your profile. A lot of marketers make the mistake of linking to their homepage from this section. Instead, a good way to gain clicks is by frequently updating this section with the latest blog content you have posted. Remember to include a short snippet on why you think this article is interesting. This strategy helps content marketers receive a lot more clicks to their pages through Instagram.
Unique hashtags: Instagram provides users with the ability to follow hashtags that they are interested in. One way to get your followers to subscribe to your content is by creating a unique hashtag for your blog and promoting it among your followers. This way, every time you have new content, you may update your followers by using this hashtag.
Once you have succeeded in bringing targeted visitors to your site through SEO and social media, the next step is channel these visitors into content that converts. There are essentially three types of content that elicit high conversion rates.
Sales copies – this is by far the most popular form of conversion-led content strategy. The objective of such content is to unabashedly sell the values of your product. This content is often used in search engine marketing to drive highly targeted buyers into purchasing your product.
Traditionally, the length of the sales copy has varied depending on the industry. The sales copy here needs to contain less text and be more visual-focused. On the other hand, industries that need more prodding and where the audience is primarily desktop-based need to be text-heavy with lots of illustrations.
Comparison – this strategy is quite commonly used by SaaS businesses where purchasing decisions are influenced by factors such as price and the features on offer. The comparison strategy is used to influence buyer opinion by comparing the company’s product directly against competitor offerings.
Pair-up strategy – this is a strategy largely used by eCommerce websites. The objective of this campaign is to influence the buyer’s decision through content. Once the reader has been warmed up to the idea of buying the product, they are then directed to the product page where the transaction occurs.
There tend to be cases where your strategies overlap. For instance, although a content piece comparing your product with competitors is meant to increase conversion rates, it can also serve as a good source of backlinks.
From a content marketing perspective, it is important to assess the ROI of your content solely based on the primary objective. This is because it is not always possible to measure the holistic ROI from a content from across all sources. Assessing secondary benefits for some content campaigns while ignoring them for others could skew your results.
Beyond The Triad
Although the triad strategy works well, in theory, there are instances where you may need to create content that does not fall in these three focus areas. For example, an organization may want to make a public announcement regarding a change in leadership or policy decision. Although publishing such content may not directly contribute to any of the three metrics, they are still vital from an organizational perspective.
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- How to Maximize Content Marketing ROI with the Triad Strategy - July 20, 2018