This is a guest contribution from Sam Warren of Rankpay
The bad news is this: that boring content you’re probably peddling? It’s not worth it anymore. It has its place, but it’s not going to take you to that next level.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not your fault for going about content marketing like this. We all do. We’ve been taught to.
But therein lies the problem doesn’t it? If we’ve all been taught to do something, and we all “follow the rules”, it stands to reason that it’d be hard to stand out. And boy, is it ever.
Don’t get discouraged though, as promised I have some good news as well.
While it may be difficult, it’s far from impossible to get noticed. You’re just going to have to think outside the box and that’s why I’m here.
I’m going to show you how to make a difference.
From time to time, we all need to brush up on our creative problem solving skills and remind ourselves that it’s OK to be disruptive and take risks.
But before we get there, let’s take a closer look at why we need to think this way in the first place.
It used to be hard to find good writers on the internet. Those that knew how to write an engaging and actionable article made waves quickly and efficiently.
Nowadays, good writers are a dime a dozen. In fact, there are far too many of us.
Back in 2012 Domo presented research claiming WordPress users alone create 347 articles every minute.
The signal to noise ratio is getting worse by the day, and in many cases writers have altogether forgotten why they started down this road in the first place.
Oh well, you probably don’t have time to consider such things. Better write another 500 word article to hit that deadline.
There, there, it’s all right. You’re not alone.
Further, this type of “bulk” content you’ve been taught to produce can still be marginally effective if you’re in a small and uncompetitive niche.
But for those of us fixing to make headway in existing markets, traditional advice just isn’t going to cut it anymore.
Don’t worry, I know you’re curious about what does work. We’ll get there.
But let’s first take a closer look at a few things you’ve probably been taught over the years. I’d challenge you to take a good hard look at each of them, and try to determine what measurable impact they’ve had for you.
This was popularized by Brian Dean a number of years ago, and it’s still a pretty awesome concept. I don’t want to devalue this opportunity for you, but it behooves us to be cautious and realistic.
The problem is, after this technique started to make the rounds, many content marketers began investing serious time putting it to good use. As a result of this, unless you’re blogging in an up-and-coming niche, the return on investment often won’t usually be in your favor.
There are any number of cornerstone and evergreen content pieces out there that you’re simply not going to best without putting in an unacceptable amount of time and energy.
This is an “extreme” example, but say you run an SEO service, and you want to rank for the term “How to do keyword research.” Well, Moz is currently ranking #1 for that term. Spoiler alert: their post already has over 5000 links built to it.
The amount of time you’d need to invest in creating a resource that’s actually more useful than a well-established magnum opus with 1k+ referring quality domains, is staggering.
It may occasionally border on impossible depending upon your link-building abilities and social capital.
Just take a look on Upwork and you’ll see a huge number of gigs looking for “writers” able to produce tons of 500 words articles focused on a small number of keyword variations.
If you’re working in a space that has no recognizable competition, this could get your site on the map. No doubt. But even under those circumstances, you’d still be missing out on so much of what content marketing has to offer.
Guess what? Readers aren’t going to click your article if it’s the same damn thing they’ve read a thousand times already.