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Why Original Content Still Rocks
Content creation has become the new online currency. The more content gets produced online, the more various audiences view and consume this content, and thus the more chances for your small company or brand to capture and engage their specific target. However, not all content shared online is created equally.
In this post, I will be looking at the importance of frequently coming up with original quality content to help promote your company, brand, website or blog. But original content can take many shapes and sizes, from a Twitter status update to an in-depth blog post. Here, I am going to focus on what I refer to as "blogging for business," meaning well-crafted blog posts to get your business noticed in a crowded online space.
From writer's block to writing and running a successful blog
Right off the bat, I can already hear some alarm bells ringing in a business owner's mind - wait, why do I need to get blogging? I'm just a reseller of industrial machinery in the local market; I'm a small product manufacturer; I sell pet food; Surely, this blogging is better suited to a more creative type of business model? What if I don't have anything important to say? Can't I stick with sharing other people's content? Will my clients be interested in what I have to say? I don't have the time nor the budget for this!
In the paragraphs below, I'm arguing that producing or commissioning original content for your business fits the bill on a larger scale. As a business owner, you want to increase your brand visibility; let your clients be aware of your next product; show why your service deserves their full attention; promote your core values; and get people talking. Blogging is one weapon in the digital marketing arsenal that can achieve all these. It's not a solitary exercise, though. Like many other digital marketing efforts, blogging is a process.
Originality improves your chances of visibility
Firstly, there's the content visibility advantage. Your business can generate more brand clout and customer feedback by posting quality content as often as possible to an interested audience. The key is to stick with your secret sauce flavour instead of borrowing other people's recipes.
Because you're more likely to capture attention and build long-term customer trust with thoughtful insights and authentic words.
For example, you could browse the Web and share that thought-provoking Forbes article about the new realities of doing business in the Covid-19 world, or tag a controversial opinion about the pros and cons of working from home.
That's ok. Or, even better, you as the business owner or manager could decide to post your specific insights into how your company is handling the crisis, and give a personal testimony of what your clients can expect in the future.
- What has the team learned from the experience?
- What does this mean for the client?
You could package these thoughts into an engaging article, and publish several such updates to your online audience - chances are your current clients are, too, looking forward to reconnecting and finding out what's next. This tactic will be a key performer in your broader content marketing strategy.
Curating in original and helpful ways
Another example is using the blogging opportunity to reveal few known facts related to your business. Your blogs could expand on popular customer FAQs, pain points, challenges, opportunities and brand ethics that are important to the consumer, such as social responsibility or fair-trade practices.
Addressing important issues or responding candidly to questions can reveal volumes about your business plans and goals, and help cement a better relationship with your customers. I hope you get the idea.
This kind of content not only appeals to your audience who may already know your business; it speaks on a much more personal level than the general copy/paste share, revealing the people and ideas behind the company. Plus, this piece of content can be uniquely crafted to include a set of keywords and tags that will benefit search engine optimisation (SEO) when potential prospects are searching online.
This is a significant plus for businesses who routinely post fresh content to climb the SEO ranks. Having a blog where you frequently post SEO-friendly articles is a great start to ramp up brand visibility. Start from here to get noticed and build up digital cred.
Social media loves original content
Quick side note: It's good to know that social media networks favour original content, too. For example, the Facebook algorithm is more likely to push displaying an original status update higher in your network's newsfeed than a link or a share to a random article on the Web.
The latter will not even show up in the newsfeed unless it receives lots of likes and comments. Therefore, aside from the engagement with posts, a network like Facebook will lean heavily towards self-creativity and ingenuity.
Another great example is LinkedIn, where users are more likely to engage with original content as in questions asked to the audience and personal insights displayed on one's feed. Sharing someone else's impressive career story will get you appreciative likes, but sharing your contribution and opinion with your business network will help boost your engagement rates.
Why not start a conversation?
Brands who have something to say in the online stratosphere, whether about themselves or other topical issues of interest to their audience, are ultimately the brands that get the ball rolling. Blogging is the ideal environment to start a conversation and get people talking.
The medium extends sufficient digital space to engage in storytelling, debate, popular or unpopular opinions, as opposed to the less extensive social media networking canvas. But that does not mean blogging can't be as captivating as your social memes.
Don't create for Google, create for people
In essence, I would like to urge you to look beyond the frequent blogging exercise purely for the sake of SEO benefits and Google ranking and think of ways to engage the readership while at it. In this line of work, we recommend blogging at least once a week to keep the digital engines running, and sometimes even more.
In truth, many variables affect your blogging outcome, from your industry peer content and the popularity of the keywords used to your post frequency and yes, even article length. But that's a different discussion for another article altogether.
Caring about your content is caring about your customer
In conclusion, your blogging efforts can lend your company the bold messaging it needs, alter people's perception, reposition your brand, and generally promote a better relationship with the customer. By sharing quality customised content, your business can show, in a friendly but professional manner, that it genuinely cares - and this is ultimately what every customer buying a product or service wants to know and feel.
About the author
Denisa Irene Oosthuizen is a freelance writer and content strategist at Reo Media Creative.
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If you enjoyed this post and have a little extra time to dive deeper down the rabbit hole, why not check out the following posts on content marketing.
- 10 Content Marketing Tips To Spark Engagement
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- How To Combine PR, Content Marketing and SEO
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- What Is Mid Funnel Content Marketing?