You may not have the time to regularly follow the insightful marketing discussions on inbound.org, so we’ve done the hard work for you.
Below we explore the five best conversations that could change the way you do business.
The Renaissance of Guest Blogging by Samuel Jefferies
When Matt Cutts, Head of Google’s webspam team, wrote that guest blogging was done, SEO teams worldwide were sent into a spin. And things soon looked more dire as two popular guest blogging networks were removed, sending hundreds of sites plunging in SERP rankings.
Like most of us, Inbound.org user Samuel Jefferies originally believed the uproar.
Then he did his research.
He soon came across a blog by a trusted source spruiking the benefits of guest blogging to increase overall site authority and long-tail traffic.
And then he looked to some of his favourite sites. Forbes, HubSpot, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur. All were still using guest blogging.
After looking at the back links of the most trusted authors on the subject, Jefferies came to a conclusion. Guest blogging hasn’t disappeared, it’s just changed.
Google is no longer solely concerned with keywords. The emphasis is on building returning audiences with quality content on and off site. Importantly, this generates signups and sales.
And this makes sense. Your audience is there to read a well-written piece of content which solves their problem.
So, reach out, build relationships with other high-quality sites and continue guest posting great content.
Conversion Rate Optimisation, by Nicole Elizabeth DeMere
Conversion Rate Optimisation (CRO) is a system that marketers use to more effectively convert website visitors into customers.
For companies looking to hire a CRO for the first time, it’s best to hire a CRO with experience so that they can then train new staff.
Remember, it takes time to establish a new department and allow it to flourish. But good hiring can make this process easier. For new CRO hires, look for candidates that are curious, systematic in their processes and have a strong knowledge of analytics.
To learn more on this, look into the annual Conversion Rate Optimisation Day (the next being on September 29, 2016). By attending in person or online you can learn the best CRO practices from a number of guest speakers, all for free.
Preparation is the key to every successful piece of content. And there are a few helpful questions you can ask yourself before you start writing.
If you were in the reader’s position, would you want to read your piece?
This is a good way to test whether you’re actually adding value to the reader. Remember, each piece of content is for them, not for you. So keep it accurate, informative and entertaining.
Is someone else doing it better?
Research your topic before you start. Check BuzzSumo or other keyword search platforms to ensure your piece of content is unique and offers something different to your competitors. If one area is covered in great detail, change your angle and offer something new.
Will it go the distance?
There’s little point investing considerable time working on a great piece of content that has the shelf-life of a tweet. Ensure your topic is relevant, but be mindful that it needs to represent the company into the future. And although a blog can theoretically last forever, make sure to update them regularly so that they’re always providing current information.
How to write for an Industry You Know Nothing About, by Kayle Simpson
Content writers aren’t experts on all topics. But they often have to cover a lot of unfamiliar bases. Luckily, there are some tricks to make this process easier.
As a first port of call, research your buyer personas to find out what information they want to know. Collect surveys from existing customers and create a list in plain language of their burning questions - or pain points.
Look online for the answers. Pay particular attention to forums and publications by influencers in the industry.
Have a look at the competition. How are they addressing their personas’ concerns? How can you use creative ways to improve their methods for yourself? Technical concepts can often benefit from well-designed infographics and videos. By breaking things down into smaller parts, they become much easier to understand for you and your readers.
Testimonials are powerful pieces of content because customers want to know that the product did what it was supposed to do. And they want to hear it from a real person. Importantly, this doesn’t require any technical writing from you, only administering a survey.
Depending on your situation, you may be able to ask your co-workers for assistance. And if it’s possible, it can be highly beneficial to write such pieces in a team. But make sure you always understand what you’re writing. It’ll keep the writing clean and the facts correct.
If you’re still struggling at this point, it can be a good idea to call in the experts. Technical writers are available for many industries, so get them to provide answers to each of customer’s problems. Rewrite the answers and include a Frequently Asked Question section on the webpage.
How to Pitch New Ideas and Tools to Your Boss, by Yuval Maoz
It’s your boss’ job to keep the business on track into the future. In their eyes, change can equate to unnecessary risk. So when you’re pitching a new idea or tool, it’s important you have a clear plan.
Before you start, you should answer two very important questions yourself.
First, why this idea? Your boss has limited resources to play with, so you have to be sure that this is the very best use of company time and money.
Second, why now? Make sure the project needs to be done now and not some arbitrary time in the future. Immediacy is good because it translates to action.
With good answers to these questions prepared, approach your boss and paint a picture of merit of your idea.
Give a clear and accurate budget and show your boss you have a plan to mitigate risk. Try to show your boss that it’s an ‘experiment worth running’ and that the potential benefits far outweigh any risk.