Engagement is important – especially when it comes to content.
A great article can have many lives, circulating across platforms and generating traffic for months or even years to come.
But what does it take to write an article that not only drives organic traffic but expands your reach across a variety of channels?
In this guide, we dive into the ingenious art of article marketing—from topic ideation to content writing, to creating a viral-worthy engagement strategy.
Sure, article marketing has gotten a bad rap and has been maligned by some. However, the content marketing approach is still viable when done right. This is where we will focus.
What is article marketing?
Article marketing is the field of content marketing that involves writing and distributing articles across a variety of outlets.
These articles are usually designed to promote the author’s business or the author’s website via backlinks generated, authority generated, and visibility gained.
How article marketing helps search engine optimization
Article marketing involves creating valuable and informative content for users to read online.
When users search for a specific topic (primarily, within Google), they are taken to the highest-ranking web pages and blog posts related to that topic.
This means that website owners can publish their article content, optimize it for search engines, and rank in Google search for a wide variety of topics.
Play the optimization game right and you can drive dozens to thousands of users to your website with your articles.
Benefits of SEO for Article Marketing
Article marketing offers many benefits when it comes to search engine optimization, including:
- Enable your website to rank for a wider range of keywords.
- Increase the authority and credibility of your website.
- Attract more organic traffic from search engines.
- Convert users into subscribers or customers.
- Provide opportunities to rank in search of images or videos.
- Directing authority to other pages on your site via internal links.
- Attract valuable backlinks to your site from other websites and blogs.
Can the marketing material be produced on other channels?
Article marketing isn’t just an SEO strategy, though. It can also enable you to generate traffic through a wide range of social, direct or referral channels.
For example, with article marketing, you can increase traffic from:
- Other blogs.
- Email campaigns.
- Paid campaigns.
Benefits of multi-channel article marketing
Taking a multi-channel approach to marketing your article is the smartest way to get the most out of your money.
If you are going to put the time (or money) into content creation, why not use it to drive visitors from a variety of platforms?
With that in mind, here are some of the benefits of article marketing on other platforms:
- Increase user engagement and engagement on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.
- You can generate organic traffic to your site and referral traffic from a variety of sources.
- You can reshare your articles on Pinterest, third party sites, Medium.com, and more.
- You get multiple opportunities to convert your visitors into subscribers or paying customers.
How to write, publish and share great article content
Article marketing becomes easy when you create a transition that works for your business and the users you’re trying to reach.
This process can look a little different from website to website, but the general steps go as follows.
1. Choose your topic
Make a list of general topics that might be of interest to your audience. Whether you’re a blogger, business owner, marketer, or something in between, chances are you’re sitting on a hoard of topics if you give yourself the chance to think.
For example, if you are a freelance graphic designer, you can believe that your target audience is interested in all things digital design.
They may want to know:
- What are the best graphic design tools?
- How to design a logo.
- What are the best fonts for business flyers?
- How much does graphic design cost?
- What are the greatest designs of this year?
Try to be thorough when it comes to thinking about topics related to your business and the people you hope to reach.
Then, you can move on to Step 2, which involves narrowing down your ideas using keyword research.
Answer the Public is a useful (and free) tool that you can use to come up with ideas for an essay topic.
2. Conduct keyword research
Coming up with interesting article topics is great, but it’s better to set it on searchable keywords. After all, what’s the point of writing an article if no one is searching for the topic you’re writing about?
Keyword research tools like Semrush allow you to search for a range of general topics and see how many people are searching for that word (or related words) each month.
This search volume is a good indicator of whether the article is worth writing for SEO purposes.
Another factor to consider is the level of competition. You might find a high volume keyword, but it’s too competitive for your small site.
In this case, it is best to target a less competitive topic and then track more competitor keywords over time.
3. Draft your article
Writing your essay may be the best part or the most difficult part, depending on your writing experience.
One option is to hire an SEO writer to ensure that your content is informative and optimized. However, you can certainly write your own content yourself.
If you’re going the DIY route, we highly recommend the inverted pyramid method for SEO copywriting, an easy-to-follow structure for writing an article from start to finish.
This method will help you drive with value and write content that users really enjoy reading.
4. Optimize your content
Next, you’ll want to optimize your content according to on-page SEO best practices.
- Write a click-worthy, keyword-optimized title tag.
- Including a descriptive meta description.
- Add an interesting H1 title.
- Including brief H2 and H3 headings.
- Writing valuable content for the body.
- Add internal and external links.
- Using an optimized URL structure.
Checking all the boxes in terms of on-page SEO will help set up your article for success, making it easier to rank high in search results and increase traffic from Google.
5. Add media
Once you have the bulk of the article content, it’s time to get creative.
You can now add media to engage users, add value to your article, and improve your chances of ranking in image or video searches.
Some of the types of media you can add to your article include:
- Pre-recorded videos.
- original photography.
- stock photos.
- Graphic designs.
- PDF files.
- digital tools.
6. Develop an engagement strategy
Before you hit publish, think about all the channels you can share your article with in order to maximize your reach.
In fact, many content management systems make this easy, by including social sharing icons when you publish an article.
Similarly, there are third-party tools like Buffer that let you share your article to Facebook, Twitter, etc. automatically.
Whether you’re going automatic or taking the manual route, make sure you share your article widely to reach as many users as possible.
7. Include linkable assets
Backlinks are one of the most important pillars of search engine optimization (SEO). Backlinks channel authority to your site, essentially making search engines “trust” your site as a reliable source of information.
Adding so-called “linkable assets” to your article can help drive links back to your site. Some of the linkable assets may include videos, infographics, free tools, resource guides, images, and more.
Find out here: Want links? Here’s how to create link-worthy content
8. Get (re)posted!
It is one thing to post your content on your blog and another to post it on other websites. You may have to “promote” your content to other publishers in order to expand your reach.
Harrow It is a free, subscription-based platform where you can find posting opportunities on other sites. Not only will publishers post claims for content, but they often accept “cold” offers for new articles.
Another option is to reach out to industry websites directly to request guest posting opportunities. If they bite, it could be a great opportunity to get your content across and direct links back to your site.
Finally, social blogging sites like Medium.com allow you to post content for free and link to your own site.
These platforms can help increase the visibility of your article, even going as far as “promoting” your post at no cost. (In fact, this is how I generated over 13,000 views in a single post on Medium.)
9. Interaction, participation and follow-up
Now that your article is out on the web…now what?
Instead of waiting for traffic to arrive, you can double down on your marketing by engaging with users as they interact with your content.
This could look like this:
- Respond to comments on Facebook.
- Post your blog post comments.
- Like and comment on the re-share on Twitter.
- Retarget your readers with Facebook ads.
- Follow up with new subscribers to your email list.
- Respond to people who reply to your email campaigns.
The important thing is not to let your article disappear into the abyss.
You can reshare your content over and over again, giving your article new life. This way, you can increase your traffic for months or even years into the future.
Get creative with article marketing
Is article marketing part of your content strategy? Must be!
Every blog post is an opportunity to drive more traffic, subscribers, and customers from a range of platforms. Don’t let your blog go to waste!
Another pro tip? Ask your audience what topics they are interested in and add them to your waiting list.
You can start a list of article ideas to leverage to keep the traffic flowing.
- How did content marketing evolve?
- Why You Should Build These 5 Unexpected Content Marketing Skills
- Content Marketing: The Ultimate Guide for Beginners
Featured image: PCH.Vector / Shutterstock