Are You Gambling With Your Small Business' Content?

BY: ON FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 13, 2015

Content production can be a laborious process, even for the most skilled small businesses and their writers. If done well and efficiently, however, it can result in more conversions, customers and a strong SEO foundation. And given the blood, sweat and tears that goes into each piece of content we conjure, why shouldn't it go the extra mile?

While the need to produce quality content has been crystal clear to SMBs for quite some time, we are now truly understanding the influence of social sharing when it comes to what we post. We live and thrive in a community creators who strive to share and be shared.

How do we get off the page and into our friends' feeds? How do we ensure that we're getting the most mileage out of our business' content? The answer comes in the form of a smarter and swifter content strategy; finding the sweet balance between quantity and quality that will make our readers and search engines very, very happy.

The ultimate goals of your business' content should be a healthy combination of the following:

  • Engagement – The almighty buzzword that ensures that you're drawing you're audience in and keeping them on the page
  • Shares – Sharing creates the notion that our content is worthwhile to a larger audience, therefore giving it even more value
  • Conversions – Remember, we're talking about business content here. While end-game of content creation may not always be dollars and cents, quality content inherently increases your business' value in the eyes of potential buyers.

Hitting the three aforementioned buttons when it comes to your business' content may seem farfetched. Right now, content creators are buzzing over list posts (example). Although lists have historically been popular in the marketing sphere, they are experiencing a boom in the face of Facebook and Twitter. Lists are indeed a viable means of topical, sharable content for your business for the following reasons, especially since they are...

  • Quick to read, which is a plus for mobile-users and a lightning-paced social landscape
  • Easy to understand, especially if coupled with plenty of relevant images
  • Prime for sharing, partially for the reasons above but also because lists serve as conversation-starters

With all of this in mind, are lists the end-all be all of SMB content? Not necessarily. Lists certainly have their weaknesses:

  • Lists rely less on original, written content. This means that you have less SEO and keyword opportunities.
  • Where as traditional content can usually be repackaged into a list, lists themselves are less prone to being repackaged (in other words, you get less mileage out of your content)
  • It can be difficult to create conversion opportunities within a list, as the content is more-so about the list itself rather than your product or business

In other words, don't ditch the traditional article or blog post in lieu of just lists. There's talk that “written” content is dying in the face of more lists and image macros; however, this simply isn't the face. SMBs should, however, take steps to spice up their blog posts and can take a few pages out of the modern list's playbook:

  • Many lists thrive off the fact that they have a catchy headline (for example “7 Passive Income Tips That You Need to Know About”) to draw in readers. Regardless of what type of content you're crafting, your headline always matters.
  • Images help, as long as you're not overloading the reader. In fact, sprinkling images within your articles provide some SEO gold if they're properly optimized.
  • Make sure that your content is straightforward and to the point. Mobile and social media users are often bouncing from point A to point.

The Bottom Line

There is no one-size-fits-all-content strategy for small business content. However, make sure you're getting the most out of your content production by having a strategy that works. By focusing on shares and understanding how to engage your audience, you'll be well on your way to a more valuable business with quality content.

Image via Shutterstock

About the Author

Brent Barnhart

Brent Barnhart is a freelance content writer specializing in topics such as Internet marketing and content marketing for small businesses. His goal is to help business owners find their voices online and improve their content strategies. You can reach Brent or find out more at brentwrites.com.

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