Does Content Really Wear the Crown Jewels?

“Content is King”. Golf Video – Most Powerful Move In Golf

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If you’re in marketing, you’ve undoubtedly heard this motto banded around over the last few years.

SEO gurus tell us to provide plenty of it to coax web crawlers into indexing our websites. And a quick Google search unveils a plethora of bloggers blogging about this very topic.

The reality is, you’ve probably waded in at least knee deep when it comes to this stuff already. Maybe you’ve started scooping out and serving up white papers, webinars, e-books, How To guides, and other educational freebies in the hopes that you’ll convince potential customers to convert into paying ones.

Don’t panic

The good news is that you’re okay, you’re on the right track. Creating Content IS massively important for your marketing strategy. As per Search Engine Watch article “The Golden Rule of SEO: Content is King”, great content is necessary not only to improve search engine rankings and traffic, but also to engage visitors and encourage them to share what they’ve learned with others off-site.

Customer 2.0 (the focus of this year’s Marketing & Sales Summit) expects you to provide them with the right kind of information at the right time. They expect you to know what they want, when they want it.

Content is a weapon on the web. Use it to help you win market share. Just make sure you have something that is truly noteworthy, and that it communicates that effectively. – Eric Enge

The question remains, is Content REALLY the rightful heir to the marketing crown?

Is Content King?

In “The Content is King Myth Debunked’, Derek Halpern says “Content is King” is – and I quote – “horrible advice”.

Why?

In his words:

Online, you only have a second to grab someone’s attention.

And during that second, people make snap judgments about you, your business, and your website.

Before. They. Read. Your. Content.

He goes on to back this up with survey results in which 94% of respondents distrusted a website because of design problems.

Turns out there’s a new royal in town. And his name is Website Design.

The 10 Red Flags of Website Design

Halpern gives the 10 red flags of web design as:

1. Confusing site names
2. Cluttered, busy layouts
3. Navigation problems
4. Boring web design
5. Pop-up ads
6. Slow loads times
7. Small fonts
8. Too much text
9. Corporate look and feel
10. Poor search functions

You can read the full article here.

Wait! Before You Go

Customer 2.0 is more mobile, better informed, less reachable, and expects more than ever before. We would love you to join us at the 6th Annual ISA Marketing and Sales Summit to discuss how the digital revolution is affecting automation companies like yours.

You can find out more here.

Final note

Join me today, June 3 2011, at 4PM EST for the first #industmarketing tweetchat.

If you haven’t taken part in a tweetchat before, you can both follow and join in the conversation by searching for the hashtag #industmarketing on Twitter.

You can also follow from http://twebevent.com/industmarketing.

 

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4 Responses to “Does Content Really Wear the Crown Jewels?”

  1. JuliannGrant June 8, 2011 at 7:11 pm #

    Nikki – you raised some excellent points here. We do preach endlessly about content being king – as it drives much of natural SEO…I’m wondering if it’s the chicken or the egg thing…. If you don’t have the right content on your site chances are you’ll have a harder time being found… so they may never get to the site at all if we give the crown to web site design. But web site design is critical to building brand reputation and trust – no doubt about it. If it sucks, then chances are you’ll lose a visitor’s interest – as Derek Halpern notes that we only have a few seconds to capture them… But in this argument the content is the egg, which brings the chicken – the web site… I think.

    Now the real wildcard is with social search changing the way search works – how will this affect both sides – The tentacles of this are really growing enormously and it all works collectively. Content drives “shares” too…

  2. NikkiGroom June 8, 2011 at 8:15 pm #

    Thanks, Juliann. I think you’ve hit on a great point with the chicken or the egg analogy. I suppose the key thing to remember here is that, it doesn’t matter how much content you have on your website – if it’s poorly presented, you’re going to turn potential prospects off.

    I actually just visited a website to read a blog post that sounded great when I read the title on Twitter. However, when I got to the site, it looked like something that had been largely scraped from another blog, wasn’t properly spaced out and was essentially just a huge chunk of text to look at. The overall design of the site looked like it had been botched together by someone on a low budget. I didn’t even bother reading the post and it goes without saying that the author missed out on me sharing the article with my Twitter followers.

    With so much information floating around on the internet and people churning out content like crazy according to the “Content is King” dogma, we’d do well not to forget how critical web design is in order to hook people in.

  3. JonDiPietro June 11, 2011 at 5:38 pm #

    Good discussion. If your content is crap, then you’re just the “King of Crap.” Design is important, but I think the essence of the discussion we’re having here is pulling in readers.

    A while back, I read about an advertising agency who was whining about losing out on a Zappos contract and blamed Zappos for not reading their awesome proposal. My response was 4 Communication Tips for Avoiding “You Lost Me at Hello”:

    1) Own It – If your stuff doesn’t get read, it’s your fault not the reader’s.

    2) Use Catchy Titles – Titles that create “open loops” by tapping into emotions like curiosity or fear.

    3) Don’t Bury the Lead – Taking a page from journalism, you need to give the reader a taste of what the payoff will be instead of making them wait until the last sentence.

    4) Make it Sticky – Utilize the principals from “Made to Stick” in order to help make sure your content gets remembered (and shared).

  4. Del July 18, 2014 at 9:49 pm #

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