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What I’ve Learned as a Content Writer at a Digital Marketing Agency

author image Written by: Content Team           Categories - Digital Marketing

Valuable Lessons From Within Our Web Marketing Company

computer In January of 1996, Bill Gates wrote, in an article appropriately titled Content is King: “Content is where I expect much of the real money will be made on the Internet.” We’ve certainly entered an era where this seems to be true, as most products and brands have blogs, and organizations everywhere are increasing their content marketing efforts. But working at a web marketing company, I sometimes suspect that content marketing is still an abstract concept for some; heck, I’m certainly still learning about this world! So in the spirit of sharing, I thought that I would write about some of the things that I’ve learned in my time working as a content writer at a digital marketing agency.

Being a Content Writer is About More than Just Writing

It can sometimes be difficult to explain to friends and family exactly what it is that I do. Yes, I write; I write blogs, website content, social media posts, product descriptions, video scripts–and sometimes all of the above in the same day–but writing content at a web marketing company is about so much more. For an organization or business, content is about branding–it’s about finding a voice for your company that speaks directly to your target audience and keeps them engaged. Well written content will educate the consumer not only about a product or service, but about how that product or service can make their life easier or better; content should answer a consumer’s questions before they have a chance to ask them. Perhaps most significantly, content should drive conversions and sales. As a content writer at a digital marketing agency, I’m consistently trying to write in a way that inspires consumer action: writing strong calls to action and value propositions, building customer confidence, avoiding excess links or text that distract from the primary goal, and even properly naming buttons (yes, a lot of thought goes into our buttons over here).

Not Just Anyone Can Write Content

I didn’t slip this one in here just to brag, but if good content is to achieve all of the digital marketing goals mentioned above, then it bears mentioning that it shouldn’t be left to just anyone to produce. We’ve established that consumers, and even clients, may not totally grasp all that content is and does, but they know bad content when they see it. Have you ever visited a website where the information is hard to find, or leaves you with more questions than answers? That’s what you want to avoid at all costs, and what our web marketing company spends a lot of time fixing (which reminds me, I’ve also learned that I can’t live without coffee).

Content is Sometimes Misunderstood

Why can’t we reuse the website content that was written 4 years ago? Why does the title of this page really matter? Why do we have to spend hours editing content that was written by the client? These are questions–albeit fair questions–that people have about content every day. For some, it’s understandably harder to quantify the value that content adds to digital marketing–it’s just words, after all! With web design, for example, it’s easier to understand exactly what part the design will play in the website, and to pinpoint exactly how users will experience different aspects. When it comes to content, it’s not so cut and dry; it’s part of our job as content writers to demonstrate the value that content brings to the table, and how important it is to prioritize.

Making Friends with the SEO Team is Important

SEO strategies and content strategies go hand-in-hand; like peanut butter and jelly, if you will. Either of them would have a very hard time succeeding without the other. I could write the greatest content the world has ever seen, but without solid SEO, it will never get found (and what a shame that would be). At our digital marketing company, the Content and SEO teams are constantly working together. It’s important for me, as a content writer, to understand what my target audience is searching for. Once I know, I can produce the quality content needed, and the SEO team can take it from there, ensuring that what I’ve written appears when it’s searched for. So–it sure doesn’t hurt to keep on the SEO Team’s good side.

There’s Nowhere to go But up (Hopefully)

I sometimes cringe reading things that I wrote just a year ago, and sometimes I read over a blog post that was written just a few weeks or months back and think that I would probably write it differently today, but that’s OK. The world of digital marketing is constantly evolving, and content is consistently being held to a higher standard than it was a year or even a month ago. Along with each of these changes comes a learning experience, and a chance to recognize past weaknesses and improve upon them. Last but not least, I’ve learned that I love creating content that speaks to consumers and helps shape organizations. If your business could use some help developing a content marketing strategy, contact our web marketing company today.

Content Team

Google’s Updates You Need To Understand

12/21/2021

We mentioned the new Vicinity update Google has going on. It was an algorithm update no one was prepared for and caused quite a commotion in the community. To avoid history from repeating itself, we must learn from our mistakes – and what better way than going through all of the things that have already happened? It could benefit you if you go through all the major updates Google had in store in the past year and come up with a strategy for the year ahead.

Google Search Biggest Updates in 2021:

For us to have the most relevant and reliable results, Google Search Algorithms are updated thousands of times throughout the year. Of course, most of them go unnoticed, but every now and then one comes along *cough cough* Vicinity *cough cough* and makes a mess. That’s why it’s better to keep track of each change, make sure to understand what is happening and learn how to use them so it can benefit you.

The Page Experience Update

This update was designed to improve the website experience searchers have. Mobile usability, security issues, HTTPS usage, Web Vitals and Ad Experience are all taken into account. The main goal is safer browsing for users and resurfacing flags in the Page Experience Report.

What To Do?

  • Work on your loading speed
  • Make sure your page has a mobile-friendly version, with no usability errors
  • Make sure your page is secure and use HTTPS
  • Don’t use interruptive, distracting or unfavourable advertising techniques

Here’s a helpful resource for optimizing your page for this update.

Link Spam Update

This was when Google reminded us about the importance of good content and quality links. The update was and still is effective at identifying and nullifying link spam across multiple languages.

What To Do?

  • You need high-quality link building
  • Create high-quality content
  • Focus and improve the user experience
  • Avoid useless linking!

Broad Core Updates

It took longer than expected, but it is done. As usual, Google didn’t offer a lot of advice on how to deal with a core update except to try hard all the time. This update had also caused big commotion since we saw some pretty weird pages ranking high. The conclusion was, again, to use quality backlinks.

ProTip! – Improving content and backlinks might help you to recover more than fixing the technical aspect!

Product Reviews Update

This update was designed to reward in-depth product reviews and “punish” irrelevant, summary-of-a-product type of content. Instead, a review should be relevant and detailed. We have also learned that Google and potential customers like seeing realistic reviews, even if that means seeing a few bad ones as well.

What to do?

  • Write longer, knowledgeable reviews
  • Add your own content, not just the manufacturer description
  • Describe how a product has evolved from previous models
  • Include the Pros and Cons

Here’s more advice on what you should know about the product reviews update and how to handle it.

MUM

Google also introduced us to the Multitask Unified Model which uses AI to help searchers. It “speaks” 75 different languages and understands both image and the written word. However, it might understand much more in the future, since Google keeps saying they’re working on expanding this capability to video and audio.

One of the first things MUM learned to do is to keep track of vaccine queries and it will continue bringing more understanding to Google’s algorithms.

Vicinity

This is a fresh one and we’re still trying to figure out what exactly happened so that keywords aren’t as important anymore. Maybe the lesson with this update is not to violate Google’s guidelines and add keywords for the sake of it. It seems like new businesses are winning with this one.

 

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Mueller: Web Pages Should Have “Some Content” Above the Fold

05/11/2021

Content creators may wonder whether Google views content ‘above the fold’ on websites as more important for its search results. Fortunately, Google’s Senior Webmaster Trends Analyst John Mueller provided clarification during a recent livestream.

During an episode ‘SEO Office Hours,’ Mueller’s Google Hangout series, a viewer asked Mueller if Google paid more attention to content above the fold. The viewer shared that they were aware of a website that moved their content from below the fold to above, and found that they SERP rankings improved instantly.

‘Above the fold’ refers to what is visible instantly upon clicking on a webpage – in other words, the top of the page. Anything on the page that requires the user to scroll to view is ‘below the fold.’

Search Engine Journal explains that, previously, Google would prioritize content above the fold on webpages when analyzing them for SERPs. Google has since switched to AI and natural language processing to analyze the entire page – not just what is above the fold.

So, does Google really prioritize content that is above the fold?

Not entirely, Mueller explains:

“The main thing is that we want to see some content above the fold,” Mueller said on the livestream. “A part of your page should be visible when a user goes there.”

Mueller provided an example of a page that wouldn’t be received well by Google.

“If a user goes to your website and they just see a big holiday photo and they have to scroll down a little bit to actually get content about a hotel, then that would be problematic for us,” he said. “But if they go to your home page and they see a hall of fame photo on top and also a little bit of information about the hotel – for example, for a hotel site – that would be fine.”

Mueller’s ultimate answer?

“It’s not purely that the content has to be above the fold. But… some of the content has to be.”

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