Creating content marketing campaigns that drive traffic, visibility, awareness and (perhaps most importantly) links is an essential part of today’s SEO role.

In her session at Brighton SEO September 2017, Laura Hampton shared her six kick-ass content strategies to help inspire your next digital PR and link building campaign. Check out her slides below:

Brighton SEO 2017: Six Kick Ass Content Strategies – Laura Hampton from Laura Hampton

Tools and takeaways

Here are some of the key tips and tools from Laura’s presentation:

1) Use what you’ve got

Understanding your client and what they stand for is an essential part of the on-boarding process.

Here at Impression, we use a client questionnaire as well as (ideally) a face to face kick off meeting to understand our client’s aims, goals and future plans, as well as exploring what they like to talk about, where their areas of thought leadership might lie and the kinds of content they like to consume.

It’s also worthwhile exploring what data or content your client already has. If you can mine their existing data sources, you may find new content inspiration – an ‘easy’ win in many ways.

Remember, you’ll need a unique selling point if you’re going to take ownership of the topic.

2) Borrow from others

As creatives, we can make content from even the dullest of sources.

Laura cited government as one such source where there is a lot of potential for creative content marketers to use existing data and visualise or use it differently for new content ideas.

Check out the ONS website and sign up for their emails to get daily data digests. You can also see how they have visualised their own data for further inspiration here.

Wikipedia is another great source of content inspiration; Laura’s example of the Dragons’ Den piece can be found here.

Don’t forget about offline, too. In this example, the Impression team have tapped into an offline campaign to drive new audiences and links to the Great Bean Bags site.

3) Hack the press

We know what they want. They want what we have. This is our opportunity to work more closely with the press, and to deliver content they’ll be pretty much guaranteed to use – and they’ve love you for it!

Be ready to comment on topical and non topical stories. Having a pre-prepared and approved set of comments for a news story you know is coming can arm you with opportunities to get prominent features for your client.

Don’t be afraid to re-do things that have been done before. If it’s been covered once, there’s no reason it won’t be covered again.

4) Make news from nothing

Through creative thinking, we can create news seemingly from nowhere. The trick is to know the story you want to create, then structure your campaign accordingly.

If you know what your headline will be, you can craft your survey or research or quiz or whatever you’re planning to make that headline.

Taking a new angle on an existing story is another great way to achieve this.

5) Find content in forums

Forums are a goldmine for SEOs. People love to talk, and they talk a lot – so use it!

Following social media conversations is one way to mine forum style content. We like to use Hootsuite to segment and track Twitter information, but other tools achieve similar.

Buzzsumo’s Question Analyzer will mine forums on your behalf, based on your keyword or theme.

Reddit is another favourite amongst SEOs. Try AskReddit for some really fun content marketing ideas.

6) More bites of the cherry

Content marketing isn’t just about getting links. As we know, it also serves to engage the audience and broaden your client’s reach. So creating content with this in mind is an integral part of drawing as much success as possible about of each campaign.

By developing content people can engage with ahead of it becoming a PR story or hook, you can drive traffic (and potentially some early stage links) from the start, returning later to utilise the data you’ve gathered to create newsworthy stories.

Here’s a great example from Branded3, and here’s anotherThis one from Gazeboshop is similar in that it has drawn attention from foodies, but without using the quiz format.

Laura Hampton

Head of Digital PR

Head of Digital PR at Impression working with colleagues and clients to deliver link acquisition campaigns that support SEO visibility and wider marketing goals. Regular speaker at industry conferences and contributor to industry publications. In my spare time, I jump out of planes.

Laura has specialist knowledge in Digital PR and Content Marketing.

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