Appeal to Your Peers and Competitors for Real Seo Success
A lot of content marketing and SEO talk is about writing content that appeals to your potential customers.
If you're a plumber, then explain how to change a tap, things like that.
However, there's a type of content that will bring even greater rewards and help you get your site ranking even better, and it means you ignore your prospects and instead appeal to your peers.
If you were a plumber, you'd write for other plumbers. Solicitors would write a lot of content that discusses issues that other solicitors would be interested in and so on.
Why content matters
It comes down to why we create content in the first place.
There are two main reasons a site ranks well in Google. One is that your site has relevant content. By that, I mean that if someone were to be searching for information about making a cheesecake, a relevant result would be a site with cheesecake recipes.
However, there's a more powerful factor at play that makes your ranking rocket – and that's back links.
Back links are simply links to your website from other places on the web.
If someone thinks your article is the bee's knees, then they might link to it from their blog and here's where the problem lies.
How many of your customers have blogs?
Some of them might, but Mrs. Miggins who just wants her tap fixed probably isn't going to on to WordPress and start writing about the experience.
No, the people that have blogs are your peers, your competitors and others in your industry and related industries.
So what does that look like?
Well, consider this scenario.
If I was a solicitor and I had a website, then I might create articles that are useful to customers of estate agents. I could then mention this to an estate agent who might like the article and put a link on their website.
Bingo! Great link!
It's an easy concept and one that can build great relationships with other companies and get you some superb links, but obviously, the content has to be good.
Of course, it doesn't have to be such a great article for it to work in this scenario, but if you get really technical and produce content that is superbly detailed and gets deep into your subject, then you're appealing to a whole new kind of person.
There's a chance that industry publications might like your article. Of course, they're not going to just happen across it, you'll need to tell them, but that's for another blog.
In many industries, there are websites that offer support and information to their members, or there might be a governing body which overseas their membership. These are ideal places to get links from, but obviously, the content needs to match their audience, not yours.
So how to go about it?
The first thing to do is to look and see what others have done.
It's a simple enough technique, but you start with your competitors' websites and see what they're writing about.
These days, if a company is doing well in the search results then they've probably got a lot of great content, so see what they've got and beat it.
Yes, write something better than they've got, that's the technique here. It's not that hard, either.
They have a “20 ways to fix a leaky tap” article?
Write one that shows 25 ways.
Just step up a gear.
But then there's the tactical method.
Go and check out some of the big players in your business and see what they link to on their website. I bet you'll find that in a number of resource pages they'll have links going out to some of their members.
It might be that the Gas Safe website has a link to one of their members who has written a great article about choosing the best engineer.
So, write a better article, about the same subject, and then write to them and ask if they would link to yours.
Something like this:
“Hi Mr Head of Marketing,
I noticed you have a page that links to an article about how to choose the best engineer on your resources section. While it's a really good article, I've written one that brings it all up to date with a few more examples that might appeal to a great audience.
Do you think you might consider linking to this one?
And that's about it.
It's a tactic that SEO types have been using pretty constantly for the past few years, and I bet it's not been used in your industry, so it's worth giving it a go.
A few things to keep in mind though:
- Your article has to be absolutely spot-on. It needs to be perfect and fill the gaps the other articles leave gaping wide.
- You must read and re-read it, ensure it's grammatically correct and all spellings are perfect.
- Make it technical. Fill it with the jargon that your peers will understand, don't dumb it down at all.
And that's it!
Andy Calloway is the co-owner and head writer for Calloway Green Ltd, a digital marketing agency based in the village of Kinver in the West Midlands.
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