13 Content Marketing Hacks to Increase Web Traffic and Leads
Have you ever felt that your content marketing efforts just aren’t earning the ROI you expected them to? That you’re spending tons of time creating and publishing content with good (not great) results? That your content just isn’t hitting KPI goals the way you want it to?
The truth is traditional content marketing tactics (like blogs) can’t always earn optimal results on their own in an increasingly competitive landscape. It’s great that more companies are using content marketing, but it also means that Google results pages are more crowded.
Simple content marketing hacks like the ones in this article can be the remedy to breathe new life into your content’s performance.
1. Repurpose Old Content
Repurposing content is one of the most efficient ways to give your content traffic a boost. It also maximizes your content’s ROI by putting a new spin on topics you’ve already covered. To find opportunities to repurpose content, you should start with your blog. As the hub of your content marketing strategy, it will contain the most potential for repurposing.
First, look at your best performing content. Which topics and articles really seemed to resonate with your audience? Which do the numbers say earned the most traffic and engagement? Take these articles and think of new ways to present them — for example, by turning a great blog post into a highly shareable infographic that shares the same information in a new, visual way.
MIG did this with our perfect blog post checklist after realizing it was such a high-demand topic for our current clients and larger blog audience. Here’s just a small snapshot of our infographic:
Your social media platforms can be extremely effective tools for earning more content traffic. My advice is to share all of your blog posts on social media — not only because your followers will see it, but because they’ll also share it when they find it valuable.
With over 3 billion people using social media every month, the opportunity is pretty huge. On just about every platform, users and engagement just keep growing over time.
Think about it. People on your social media feeds are sharing content every day, right? Content is a great conversation starter. When you create content that aligns with customer needs and helps to solve their problems, people will want to pass it on.
3. Share It Again
Whether you push content through social media or through emails, when you’ve spent time on creating a piece of content, don’t just send it out once. Share it again. With email, it’s now pretty easy to know when people haven’t opened their emails. Collect all the people on your mailing list who didn’t do so and send them a new copy with a new headline (after all, they didn’t see the body of the text). With social media, make certain you share your content several times over several days. That way you’ll get far more bang for your content marketing buck.
4. Update Old Blog Posts
Trends and statistics change all the time, and it’s one of the primary reasons blog posts become outdated. The thing is that most of the time, the important points stay the same — it’s just the details that change.
You can significantly extend the shelf life of your blog posts by updating them to include current statistics and new trends that have arisen since they were originally published. You can also edit old blog posts that aren’t performing up to par.
HubSpot shares three smart categories to use when you’re looking for blog posts to update:
- The Biggest Losers: Content that has lost organic traffic at a high volume in the past 3-6 months
- The Almost Famous: Content that’s currently ranking on page 2 of Google SERPs
- The Nobodies: Content that’s targeting the right keywords but still isn’t ranking
And below are the results HubSpot experienced after updating some of their own old posts. Not bad indeed!
5. Use a Content Calendar
A content calendar is a documented schedule that includes all of your content projects and their deadlines. It gives you one, centralized view of your planned content and publishing schedule. It also holds your team accountable for staying on track and sticking to deadlines.
Content calendars take time and commitment to manage, especially when you’re just getting started. But the truth is that without one, your content strategy is likely to lose direction. You’ll earn the highest ROI on your content when you use a calendar to actionize it effectively.
Fortunately, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel when it comes to content calendars. There are tons of free templates you can download and customize, including this one that we use at MIG:
6. Make It Visual
Visual content is the key to content engagement. Research has found that users typically only read about 20% of the text on a web page. To boot, they only remember about 10% of what they do read, compared to 65% of what they see. Using visuals to support your written content makes it more digestible, engaging, and memorable for readers.
The proof is in the content performance: blogs with visuals earn 94% more page views than those without them. Video is by far the most consumed type of content (it accounts for 80% of all online traffic) and infographics are shared 3x as much as any other type of visual content.
Adding visuals doesn’t have to be complicated, either. You can create short-form videos for social media stories that require minimal production. High-quality images can be sourced from reputable websites to add to your blog content. You can use apps like Canva to easily create supporting images without any formal design experience.
7. Prioritize SEO Everywhere
By now we all know about keywords and the importance of crafting blog posts optimized for search engines. But there is way more to an SEO strategy than just your blog articles.
Technical SEO, for example, is like the nuts and bolts of your website’s SEO performance — it holds it all together and allows search engines to easily find, crawl, and index your pages. Backlinks from high-quality sites increases your brand authority and establishes your brand’s reputation as an expert. Metadata like titles and descriptions draw people to your content.
My recommendation is to approach SEO holistically the same way you do for your overall content strategy. Make it a priority in every part of your content plan, from keyword research to blog setup to article writing to publishing schedule and more.
8. Test Your Headlines
Instead of simply selecting a headline that ‘feels good’ think about generating a bunch, then putting them in front of a crowd and seeing which work better. A lot of tools these days enable you to test headlines out (for next to nothing). Then use the title that works best and pulls far viewers. After all, even the best content in the world won’t get anywhere if it never gets read.
9. Choose Quality over Quantity
You can’t compete with the internet. So don’t even try. Instead of going for lots of content, try going for less but make certain that the quality of these pieces is outstanding. This serves two purposes. The first one is that better pieces have longer legs and will keep getting shared and found by readers.
The other one is that when somebody does follow one of your pieces to your site, as they browse around they’ll be more likely to stick around due to the high quality of your material. So instead of trying to do three pieces a week, drop it down to two and give those pieces the extra love and care they need.
10. Copy the Competition
There is absolutely great content out there, so when you find it make certain that you bookmark it and store it. There’s a lot of good software and apps out there to help you track what you’ve seen. Evernote is a good example, but there are lots more. So, use it whenever you find something interesting. In that way, you won’t have to spend twenty minutes finding back that page (if you can find it back at all). In this way when you’re getting ready to write up your piece everything will already be there for you and you can get straight to work
11. Interview Experts (or Just Talk to Them)
The great thing about experts is that you don’t have to work hard to give your piece value – the expert is already doing that just by being part of your piece. Add to this that the expert will doubtlessly have some fantastic nuggets of information that will make your piece far more interesting and it’s hard to see a downside. If you know anybody that you think your readers want to hear about, shoot them an email with a few questions every so often and then just copy-paste it into your text. Instant content and credibility!
12. Use Lead Magnets
Lead magnets are high-value content assets offered in exchange for a user’s contact information. The thing about lead magnets is that they’re a win-win for everyone involved. You aren’t scheming anyone into sharing their information because the content you’re providing in exchange helps them solve a real problem or accomplish a real task that’s important to them.
Lead magnets include content like PDF checklists, ebooks, reports, whitepapers, templates, videos and more. You can use them to boost engagement and generate more leads all while demonstrating how your brand can provide value in real-world situations.
When used effectively, lead magnets can increase opt-in rates by 85%! Here’s a quick overview on how to do it:
13. Build Your Network
With content marketing being as new as it is, it is more of an art than a science right now. There are constantly new developments and insights coming out and you can’t keep track of them on your own. So build up a network of other like-minded content marketers and share your ideas with each other. Heck, try to get together every so often. It might be fun.
Whether you decide to meet in person or not, they can be great for ideas, for solutions as well as to discuss problems with. Not only will this keep you in the loop, it will make the entire experience more social and that is something we can all use. Heck, maybe instead of having to go onto the internet, they’ll be the source of your next 10 hacks for content marketing. Who knows? It’s certainly worth finding out, isn’t it?
Great Content Is the Key
You can’t implement any content marketing hacks if you don’t have a library of high-quality content. The team of writers and SEO experts at Marketing Insider Group can deliver you optimized, ready-to-publish content every week for one year (or more!)