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Most successful business owners have some kind of strategy for marketing, growth and development. As such, most marketing now includes a digital budget, with various channels including display, pay-per-click, social, video and others. However, half of the companies doing digital marketing have no content marketing strategy. This is a major misstep, not only for SEO, but for overall brand growth.
While many companies understand that customers are searching online and have developed keyword-centered SEO content marketing strategies to address this, most of these strategies revolve around creating content with very little value, other than a higher rank in search engine results. Due to the amount of information available online for almost any product or service, the power in sales has shifted to the consumer. A good content marketing strategy is not only in line with a business's sales goals, but also provides enough useful information that it can be used as a resource for research as well as a landing page for sales. This "double duty" helps keep search engines and searchers alike happy, while creating authority and building trust.
While writing keyword-centric content is a good first step in a piece of content marketing, the aim should be to provide useful information (building trust and authority) while aiding in and aligning with the sales process of the business in some way. That way, a site doesn't just end up with a bunch of empty keyword optimized fluff for content, and will actually get visitors organically that choose to stay on the site to conduct research and shop.
Content marketing isn't just about pleasing search engines, it is also about aiding the sales process and building trust with consumers that have endless options for research and purchase. How are you all making your content beneficial for other things besides SEO?