content optimization

The 3 Best SEO Plugins for WordPress (and How to Use ‘Em!)

By |May 16th, 2016|

This blog is currently experiencing rapid growth in traffic from search. Last month, search traffic more than doubled from what it was just a couple months previously. This month looks on track to continue that rapid upward trend.

In fact, last month had over 11 times the amount of traffic from search for the same month last year.

Of course, there are multiple factors involved, but they mostly boil down to three main strategies, the last of which I focus on here:

  • Regularly creating and publishing valuable content. The more content you have, the more search traffic you can start to claim a piece of across an ever-widening array of keywords. Each new piece of content is an asset that fuels your future traffic growth.
  • Continually building online authority through the repurposing of that content through various online channels. This includes social media and building up our social audiences (for example, we’re now past the 10k milestone on Twitter). As content gets repurposed, republished and shared, you build natural inbound links that reflect a growing level of authority, and helps determine how your content is ranked. In other words, your content assets grow in value for your business.
  • Optimizing the blog for search. As well as optimizing posts individually for search, and effectively linking between posts to help search engines determine what content is about, it also means getting the right SEO foundations in place for the blog. While there are a plethora of SEO plugins available, there are just three such plugins I consider essential and that this post focuses on.

So in this post, I cover:

  • The 3 best SEO plugins for WordPress.
  • Why you need them. In other words, how they help your site rank and attract increasing amounts of search traffic.
  • How to use them. I’ll cover how to set them up for best results.

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Build Your List With Content Upgrades: On Your Blog… And Beyond!

By |February 29th, 2016|

Want a more powerful way to convert visitors to your blog into leads for your business? How about a 300% to 785% improvement in conversion rates?

Welcome to the world of content upgrades…

In brief, it means offering more value to the visitor  – say in the form of a relevant download – in exchange for their email address.

But content upgrades aren’t just for your blog…

Content upgrades also work when integrated into content published on other platforms across the web.

In fact, thanks to the often higher engagement levels you get on these other content platforms, this can be even more effective. Yet few if any are really doing this right now…

I’ll share more on this below! But first…

Here’s quick summary of what you’ll learn here:

  • What content upgrades are: What they are and how they benefit you (it’s not just for list building there are some other advantages I can practically guarantee you won’t be aware of)…
  • The results to expect: I’ll share some of my own results, as well as those from other business owners (some of these you’ll find surprising)…
  • How to create content upgrade bonuses: Some examples of bonuses you can offer as content upgrades, and vital things to think about when creating them so they bring you maximum advantage, even after someone has opted in your list…
  • The mechanics: How to actually implement them on your blog – and on other content around the web – including how to deliver the content upgrades to new opt-ins. I’ll cover some easy ways to get you started… and, for the more advanced, not so easy (but more powerful!).
  • Ramping up results: What you need to do long-term to optimize your results from content upgrades. (Do this right, and you could double or even triple their effectiveness.)

Comprehensive? I’d say so…

Let’s dive straight in.

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Ultimate Guide To Social Meta Tags: Open Graph And Twitter Cards

By |February 1st, 2016|

By adding some simple social meta tags to your website or blog, you can improve how your content is displayed on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. This improves your visibility and increases your traffic by making your updates more appealing for both clicks and shares.

After all, when you use the right image, descriptive text, and so on for a sponsored update on social, you can improve engagement (including click-throughs) by often 100s of percent.

The same principle applies for organic updates – normal, every day, run-of-the-mill updates on social – and social meta tags are how you control exactly what’s shown, including:

  • The title
  • The description
  • The image

As a quick example of the difference this can make, here’s what would show on Twitter for someone sharing the blog’s url (http://blog.vwriter.com) before I made use of the right tags:

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Call To Action: Creating Effective CTAs In Your Content Marketing

By |August 13th, 2015|

So, someone’s consuming your content? Congratulations!

That’s the good news…

Sorry to spoil the party, but here’s the bad news…

The fact that someone is reading, watching or listening to your content means practically nothing unless you get them to take some kind of action as a result.

Here’s a brief outline of how content marketing benefits your business:

  1. You create content of different kinds and in different media. You publish it on your own site and/or on other sites and content platforms across the web, preferably through repurposing.
  2. People – your marketplace – are attracted to your content and consume it. In so doing, they are effectively raising their hand as a potential new prospect for your business.
  3. You connect with them further to start building a relationship with them. (Otherwise you lose your new prospect as quickly as they found you!) You do this via an explicit and effective call to action – CTA – that tells the prospect exactly what to do.
  4. You continue building a relationship with them, building your authority and credibility with them, and building up trust. This is how you transform that prospect into a customer, and create profits for your business.

If you miss out #3 and don’t have an effective call to action in your content, #4 never happens!

What’s Your Goal?

You first need to decide what your goal is with the content. In creating and publishing the content, what is it you want to achieve?

It might be to build your list. Or attract more social followers. Or simply to build your visibility and brand online.

Want a recommendation?

Email marketing is still one of the most powerful ways to build relationships with prospects. It’s therefore a key way to drive higher results from content marketing activities.

Whether your content is on your own site or on a content platform such as YouTube, LinkedIn Pulse or Medium, I would recommend to focus primarily on building your list.

For example, include a CTA in the content to encourage the prospect to download a relevant lead magnet, such as a suitable content upgrade.

But whatever your own goals might be, this post looks at how to create your own highly effective calls to action. I also include examples from across the web you can use to model your own.

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How To Use Twitter Cards For More Sales And Traffic

By |July 2nd, 2015|

By using Twitter Cards, Tweets linking back to your site no longer contain just text and an optional image or two.

They allow you to create a ‘rich media’ experience for readers. That means additional visual, audio and textual content, with the ability to play video and audio from directly within the timeline.

These enriched Tweets can help them stand out from the pack, build your authority and credibility, and encourage deeper engagement including click-throughs from followers.

In addition, you can use Twitter Cards to capture new leads from directly within the Twitter timeline, and encourage users to visit your website with a special call to action button. Plus, when you choose to promote Tweets that use such cards via Twitter Ads, you can reach whole new audiences.

Presuming you are using a blog to publish the majority of your content and drive the rest of your marketing – as recommended in the “Be Everywhere” Online Marketing Blueprint – implementing Twitter Cards for your business is straightforward and only takes a few minutes. This post shows you how.

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Blog Content Ideas: 10 Easy Ways To Generate Laser-Focused Ideas For Blog Content

By |May 28th, 2015|

Content is of course one of your most important marketing assets. It works 24/7 to attract people to your business. But many business owners struggle to know what to create content about. Or they create content that fails to properly attract their target market.

This post aims to solve both those issues. Here are 10 top ways to come up with new ideas for content that are laser-focused for your target market. You should never be stuck for content ideas again!

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Content Optimization: Using Content To Improve Search Engine Ranking

By |October 22nd, 2013|

In my previous post on website content strategy (and yes, you do need one), I talked about how to do keyword research to enable you to then create content your prospective customers are actively looking for.

Effectively you’re developing a wide range of bait through which you attract your marketplace, and hook them into your website.

But how do you ensure your content is optimized for the keywords you focus on, so you get search engine rankings for your bait, and attract click-throughs from potential customers?

I’ve been involved in search engine optimization for over a decade, have numerous #1, top three and first page listings for a wide range of keywords, including #1 placements for keywords with millions of competing results, and have done for years (including seeing off numerous Google algorithm onslaughts that have devastated other sites and businesses) … so know a thing or two about what it takes to rank, and rank well, over extended periods.

I’m not talking about gimmicks, or the latest shady practice that might work now but will get you stung long-term … but creating the type of site that delivers exactly the type of value Google wants to deliver to its users, and the type of site they can’t help but rank well because it’s best of breed and not doing so would be a disservice to their users.

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