SEO Myths are something that appear almost daily to my inbox, but its not people who know they are myths - its people asking for advice based on what they see as factual information (the myth). So today, I want to clear up some of the confusion around Blogging (and one or two around Content Marketing) in the vague hope that these myths disappear.
Myth 1 - More Content is Better!
One of the most regular question type's I get is "how do i get more content onto my website" and "do i have enough content on my website".
The mere fact these questions are being asked is simply wrong and means that (as we knew) SEO was being mis-sold as a "lets create more content for better rankings" scenario - it really isn't. But in light of Panda this is a myth that is now becoming rarer in my inbox.
More Content does NOT mean better rankings.
Better rankings from content can be gained through valuable content, quality content - this is not about the number of blog posts you write or how many pages you have on your website, but rather the depth of content and quality of it for your audience.
And that final point is absolutetly key to your marketing success. Writing content is great but if you don't target your content for your audience then it may rank but it wont be for terms your users search. Always consider your audience when writing content.
If you wonder what makes truly great content for your audience, have a listen to a few of the Content Matters podcasts by Iain Griffin. He talks to lots of content experts and marketing experts about how their content is adapated for their user needs, everything from councils to books.
Myth 2 - Your Website Needs FRESH Content
Over the past few years Google has had lots of alogrithm updates which have focused on getting your content in rankings faster (and obviously improving rankings for great content - see above). But all these updates have done for SME's looking for SEO help, is cause hysteria on a large scale. There is mass confusion around what these updates have meant, and many an SEO started by spinning the story above "more is better" and this has lead to "I need to publish something every day" (or hour) ... more content all of the time!
But this idea is simply wrong.
Fresh Content in rankings is NOT about new content on your website or blog. It is NOT about just roling out a blog a day writing about nothing in particular (random crap thats on your mind is not a good blog!).
Instead fresh content IS about writing great and deep content on a regular basis. It IS about upading older content and ensuring it is still valuable, and if it isn't then you replace it. Fresh Content should be about improving quality and not simply rolling out new blog posts because you think you need to.
Myth 3 - Once Content is Created & Published, You Are Done
This is a bit of a pervasisve myth and has been the downfall of many a website. The idea of "build it and they will come" is something that online marketers have shunned for a long time, and yet this myth sticks around.
In my experience creating content for your website is only 20% of the effort required to successfully marketing that content and your website. The remaining 80% marketing that content to ensure it reaches your intended audience, natively, on platforms & channels which they use - from email newsletters to social media and forums, reaching beyond your 4 walls is all about effective content marketing.
So the idea that you can write it and it will be read is plain wrong - it's time to reach out and become that success you want to be.
Myth 4 - Content Marketing has ZERO ROI
I must say this isn't a common myth really, but it does stick around. It's the idea that marketing using things like social media to reinforce and build your content has no return for a business or organisation.
The answer is simply this is a load of codswallop.
As I recently shown with a simple hashtag of #ShaveMeBald for content marketing needs I amanged to reach a huge audience with effective outreach. I also raised a bunch of money for Macmillan Cancer Support at the same time. You can read about the results from this campaign on the redstar blog about using social media to amplify a cause.
It's a similar story for small businesses like restaurants or perhaps the lone massage therapist. An example of this is Tina at Woodley Massage Practice, shes having a website built currently, but in the mean time she is content marketing using twitter and facebook - and it's driving a lot of business for her, that and the number of word of mouth referrals online mean that her business is going places. Another example is the work I do at RedStar which about building community and engagement using twitter and facebook (simply search for redstar creative on most social platforms).
Whats Your Favourite Myth?
Now that I've shared my favourite myths it's time for you to share yours. Leave a comment here or on social media and let me know about your favourite marketing myths.