In the last few years, content marketing has become an increasingly important tactic for businesses trying to stay ahead in the competitive online world. Content creation and SEO go hand in hand, but unfortunately the two tactics are not always integrated well – if at all - by marketers.
Each content strategy should start with a comprehensive SEO analysis, including thorough keyword research. Without this step, even the most well researched and brilliantly written piece of content will underperform and not reach the wide online audience it deserves.
Here are five common mistakes marketers make in this important preparatory stage of content creation.
1. Skipping keyword research
Some content marketers don’t bother with keyword research at all, relying instead on guesswork or instinct to decide on the relevant phrases that will help them reach their target audience.
But put in the work in this area and your keyword research becomes a valuable tool for discovering what your audience wants and needs, perhaps before they even know it themselves. Armed with this real data, you can effectively play matchmaker between the content you create and the online travel shoppers who are searching for it. You can use your knowledge of your audience’s intents, wants and needs to strategically plan content that directly addresses these issues and converts visitors into paying guests.
2. Not checking out topic ideas
Find out whether your content ideas are likely to work by using a tool such as BuzzSumo to discover the results the same topics generated for other hotels. Examine the data to see how many times certain topics have been shared on Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites. If a particular topic or keyword has generated lots of engagement on a consistent basis, you know it’s a fairly safe bet to run with.
3. Neglecting AdWords data
Google Adwords allows you to identify how the keywords you’re using in your hotel’s paid search campaigns are converting. Planning your content creation campaigns around the top performing keywords can help make your hotel’s website more profitable.
4. Treating content marketing and SEO as one and the same
Content marketing and SEO are not the same thing. True, producing top quality content on a regular basis is essential if you want to rank well. But Google brings a whole host of factors into play when determining where to rank websites in the SERPs, from technical on-page elements to link-building, social reputation and a website’s structural architecture.
Setting up a regular routine for publishing blog content to your website is a great start but it won’t help you achieve your highest SEO potential unless the other elements are in place too.
5. Not measuring the success of your content campaigns
Another major content marketing crime is not taking the time to assess the performance of the content your hotel has invested in. If you don’t make use of the myriad of tools out there to see if your content is actually driving the results it’s designed to, you’ll never know if your efforts are truly effective and worth pursuing long term. It seems obvious but it’s a step many marketers are neglecting. Analysing the performance of every major content campaign you run is essential if you want to refine and improve your strategies and reach bigger audiences with even better results.
Do any of these content marketing sins sound familiar? If so, it may be time to bite the bullet and make some changes to your current routine.
How does your hotel integrate content creation with SEO? Let us know in the comments below!