Friday 31st of July 2020
The pressure to be creating good content is higher than ever before. Whether you’re a copywriter, a content executive or a business owner, you probably wonder how to find the perfect content ideas, those that will help you reach the right audience and resonate with them.
In a recent article about search listening, we explain what search listening is and how it can help you find out what your audience really thinks about your product or service. In this article, we will dive a little deeper into search listening, and we will try to understand how to leverage this knowledge to turn it into something profitable.
Even though creating the perfect content has always been challenging, it has become harder throughout the years. Customer success expert Eric Delima Rubb has identified three main challenges that every content marketer faces.
Measuring success is by far the biggest challenge when it comes to content creation. How can you measure people’s sentiment and engagement after reading your content? How can you tell if your readers are more interested in your business now that they have read your content if they are not sharing their opinion on the web afterwards? You simply can’t. However, there are some ways to get around this and we will talk about this a bit further down.
You have probably heard that one before, the landscape has become more and more saturated over the years, it is therefore more and more difficult to make your content stand out. On top of that, several studies revealed that our attention span is decreasing making it even more difficult to captivate an audience. So the question is, how to break through this noise? That’s where search listening comes into play, through helping you produce the piece of content that your audience is looking for.
The way we search, produce and interact with content is constantly evolving as we see new platforms emerging like Medium, and as the platforms available to create content evolve themselves. This situation adds extra pressure on content creators as they now need to work out which platforms are best suited for their audience, and then make sure they create optimised content for each platform.
As you understand, anybody looking to create content nowadays is facing a number of challenges, which can be overcome if you follow the right steps. You must be wondering, what can be done from a search listening perspective to make sure that I produce the right content? Sophie Coley, co-founder and content director at searchlistening.com; tells us the key steps to follow.
This is an obvious one for some but for the others, planning helps you to get ahead of the competition. Your content will break through the clutter if you are the first to release the information your audience is looking for.
Traditional keyword research
This is a lengthy process, but it is necessary if you want to produce good content. You’re not alone, nearly 500,000 people a month use answerthepublic.com, so the thing to remember here is, do your homework.
Keyword research is good but don’t limit yourself to it, researching and analysing your audience needs, wants, attitudes, behaviour and sense of self is key if you really want a deep understanding of your audience.
Look for trends
Google Trends is your best friend for that, if you search for a keyword, Google will also show you related topics, and you may come across things that you would have never thought could be of interest to your audience. For example, if Jamie Oliver is very popular when searching for tofu, it can be worth having a look at how he talks about tofu, what is he doing better that makes people want to read his article. Is he giving the tofu to chicken ratio that so many people are searching for?
Make sure you do this on a regular basis. It is good to know that you can even schedule alerts with answerthepublic.com to help you keep on top of things.
Keyword research is extremely helpful, it can help you determine at what stage of the buying process somebody is, which in turn can help you answer the questions they have. The infographic below summarises the customer journey and the questions you need to be asking yourself at each stage in order to create relevant content. Take for example someone who simply searches for “best quality vacuum cleaner”, this person is likely to be at the awareness stage. In comparison someone searching for “Where to buy Dyson vacuum cleaner” will probably be at the conversion stage. These two people are clearly looking for different information, and knowing this, you can influence them by creating the right content. Post-purchase behaviour sometimes reveals the most interesting searches. Looking at searches starting with “my” for example like “my dyson vacuum” can reveal what problems people who bought a Dyson vacuum cleaner are facing, because they are literally telling Google. If you want to carry out your own keyword research, we will tell you more about the tools to use in this article.
Sometimes, the simplest is also the best. Marketing professionals also mention the importance of simply asking your audience what challenges they are facing, what they want out of something, or even invite them in the content creation process by asking them their opinion on a draft of asking for ideas. This can be easily done through social media, as long as you have a big enough following.
Finally, measuring the impact of your work is the main challenge as we mentioned it earlier, but there are a few ways to find out if your content is right. Looking at referral traffic for example can help you assess if the content you are creating drives people to your pages or not. Looking at what actions people have taken, in terms of social engagement and link data, is another way to measure the impact of your efforts.
Overall, the important thing to keep in mind is that your goal needs to create content for the right people instead of content that appeals to the largest number of people. If you need help with content creation, keyword research or audience research, our team of experts can help. Get in touch!