With small Seattle businesses, and businesses everywhere, content marketing – or Content-onomics as we call it here at Marketeering Group – can be relegated to the lower levels of your business priorities. However, content is crucial to the success of your business online. It drives more traffic to your website, by attracting search engines and human eyes, than anything else.

Content marketing really matters. Why?

Content Gets Attention.

If it is relevant and interesting, your online blog, social media posts, and email marketing campaigns will get your customers’ attention. For small businesses in Seattle that are primarily a brick-and-mortar presence, content provides pretty much the only way to get in front of their customers when he or she is not right in front of the physical business.

Email marketing campaigns remind the customer of special upcoming events or promotions, blog post feeds can be followed for consistent updates or education on the business and its products/services, and Facebook and Twitter bring that up-close-and-personal interaction with the business.

Content Engages Audiences.

This is particularly true with social media. Blog posts and email marketing provide information and education, but customers of today’s small Seattle businesses are more likely to comment on your Facebook post and ‘re-tweet’ your Twitter message than to comment on a blog post.

Through Facebook, your business can interact with other business pages in your neighborhood or industry, ‘liking’ and commenting on their posts or shared content, creating a community. This behavior also puts your brand and business in front of potential customers who are already fans of those pages or social media communities.

With Twitter and Pinterest, you have a quick and easy method of interacting and sharing educational information or interesting photographs (of your products or otherwise) with your followers.

As of today, there are over 163 million users on Facebook in the United States, Google+ is now the second most-used social media network at 343 million active users globally (Facebook has an estimated 693 million active users around the world), Twitter passed more than 200 million active users worldwide back in December, and the newer social media powerhouse, Pinterest, passed 10 million U.S. users faster than any other site in history. That’s a lot of users, and potential customers.

Of course for small Seattle businesses, those numbers are significantly smaller. But with that wide scale of people actively using these social networks around the world and in the United States, it stands to reason that there is a heck of a lot of people in Seattle using them, too.

Content Attracts Search Engines.

Search Engine Optimization is a mystifying science for lots of people these days – even those who are technologically inclined. It doesn’t help that Google and other search engines are constantly changing their methods and valuations, so that an SEO strategist has to constantly update his/her approach. But across the board, content is the driver to better optimization on search engines.

A simple way to achieve the most basic search engine optimization without expert help is to ensure that your blog posts are regularly posted (once per week is optimal, once every month is mandatory), and that they include keywords or keyword phrases.

TheGoldStandardOfContentMarketingL-724x1024When you use keywords or phrases, choose simple words or phrases that are most important to you with that post, or your site and business as a whole. For instance, you might have regular live music events at your Seattle bar, so two phrases you should make sure to use are “live music events” and “Seattle bar”. It gets much more complicated the deeper you go in SEO practices and strategies, but using keywords in your blog posts can help give you a boost.

What Now?

Approach your content marketing using some form of this “Gold Standard of Content Marketing” from NewsReach. (Infographic on the right).

By using a mixture of originality, engagement, and search engine optimization, your (well-done) online content could mean the difference between remaining stagnant in your brick-and-mortar business, versus the possibility of doubling – or more – your sales and foot traffic to your business. However, it’s crucial to remember that your content must be produced regularly, be interesting to read, and be unique.

Featured photo from EmpowerNetwork.com.

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