Have you been blogging without much return for your time? Wondering what it means to “curate” your content? You have come to the right place! Here are five simple steps to curate your content into a marketing tool for your business.
Add Internal Links
One principle of content marketing is the idea that your content is so engaging and informative that readers want to see more of your articles, pages, offers, etc. But without links in your articles, it will be difficult for readers to do that. It’s important to link to and from your various blog posts so it is easy to flow across your site.
However, this needs to be done strategically. Link text needs to describe something that the reader can learn more about by clicking through to the other post. Additionally, the content needs to be related so there is a desire to learn more about the linked text. This seems elementary but it is a simple necessity that is often forgotten. Not only do internal links extend your average time on site, but they are good for search engine optimization (SEO), too.
It should be noted that external links are also a staple of strong SEO. Plan on adding at least one to each post you curate.
Include an Easy-to-Find Email Signup
Hopefully, you already have a way to collect email addresses on your site. If not, you can set up a free Mailchimp account that is quick and easy to embed into your blog posts.
Email marketing is crucial to establishing a strong content marketing strategy. By including an email signup in your blog posts, you are giving the reader yet another way to stay engaged with your thrilling content that they can read in the future. By collecting emails (and other information if you want), you can start contacting these subscribers with your new content to develop a base of loyal website visitors and, subsequently, leads to business.
There is a litany of ways to set up an email signup form on your website. If you want to go the pop-up route (not our first choice), make sure it does not appear immediately on the first page. Instead, there should be a delay until the website visitor takes one of three actions:
- Visits at least two pages
- Remains on the article for at least one minute
- Scrolls at least 50% of the page
By initiating a delay on the pop-up, you give the visitor a chance to fall in love with your content. Too often we see pop-ups occur immediately upon the first page loading, leading to a lesser conversion rate – or worse, leaving your website entirely.
We recommend including your email signup link somewhere in the text of the post. It will be hard to miss, and if you place it in the bottom half of the content, you will capture the visitor at the most opportune moment. Do not settle for sidebar placement!
Review Metadata and Social Media Previews
A quick overview of these terms:
- “Metadata” is the content Google and other search engines display on their results pages
- “Social media previews” are what you see when you share a blog post on social media platforms
Another principle of content marketing is the share-ability of content on search engines and social media. If people come across your article on Google, what do you want them to see? What will make them click on your post? On social media, which image and text will resonate with your audience?
This is a very important element to remember any time you publish or update an article. Information is pulled automatically by Google, Facebook, and Twitter (you can edit the LinkedIn description) and cannot be changed once it generates.
Depending on your content management system (CMS), these can be customized easily or they may require some plugins or add-ons. A few of the most popular website builders make it simple:
- WordPress: Download a plugin like Yoast SEO or similar program
- Squarespace: Editable within the native CMS via the page editor
- Wix: Editable within the native CMS via the page editor
Most editors have ways for you to manipulate the metadata and social previews. Ensure you customize this preview before externally sharing your content!
Provide Tangible Recommendations
This is where you may need to make some edits to your previously written content. For content marketing to succeed, posts need to provide some sort of value to the reader. The simplest way to do that is to create calls-to-action like you would see in a successful email. Or, if you want to be slightly more covert, consider the way this post is written.
To provide tangible recommendations is to tell the reader two things:
- You (the writer) are the authority on the topic
- The reader is the “student” reading to learn more about said topic
Do not lose sight of those two assumptions when writing. It will keep your mind action-oriented and help your writing become more confident. This is a content marketing imperative!
Regularly Curate Content to Make It Evergreen
The final step in curating your content is to, well, curate your content! To curate your content is to update and refresh it while turning it into a marketing tool as we have mentioned throughout this article. But once you go through this list, you should plan to revisit your content regularly in the future to ensure it is still relevant. We recommend reviewing old posts at least once per year.
Every blog post will have potential updates over time and you need to stay abreast of those changes. If you blog about traveling, maybe you add a section about some new attractions or architecture. Or if you blog about marketing like we do, you can update your content about social media with whatever is the hot current news.
As long as your content is refreshed and relevant, you can continue to share it and hopefully turn it into new business. A blog post is only as good as the marketer who reviews it – and that includes updating the content.