The Online Marketing industry is constantly changing. Whether it’s an algorithm shift, a new Online Advertising offering, new buzz words, the list goes on. With constant change, confusion is always nearby. In the realm of SEO, Content Marketing (or Inbound) is creating confusion not only within the industry itself but also with clients. Why?
Unfortunately the problem is that too much effort is being spent on explaining or justifying why SEO is better than Content Marketing or vice versa when in reality the two NEED to be integrated. Neither will be effective without the other. SEO and Content Marketing shouldn’t be viewed as two separate pieces but instead two components of an integrated strategy.
Here Comes the Bride... SEO
Let’s take a look at the SEO portion first. Search Engine Optimization has an important place within Online Marketing. The technical pieces such as website architecture, crawlability, navigation, redirects, etc. are extremely important. If some of these items are not taken care of, the search engines may never see your amazing content. There are also the fundamentals and best practices of SEO like meta-data (lower importance but still should not be ignored), cross linking internally, alt tags and more that need to be optimized.
Next Comes the Groom... Content Marketing
Now, with all of that said, even with all the technical SEO items in place, if you have bad content or the wrong content, your organic success will suffer. A well thought out Content Marketing strategy must be part of the mix. The beauty of Content Marketing is that your content can take on any form you’d like, with a mixed approach being recommended. Infographics, Blogs, white papers, resource articles, images, video, etc. If something provides value to your audience, it is content. But just like SEO having multiple pieces of the puzzle, Content Marketing does too. You can't just create the content, you also need to promote it. Content Promotion will play an integral part in achieving success not only for the content’s reach, but also your organic search efforts.
The Online Marketing landscape has changed drastically over the past 14 years since I began my career at E-Power. The days of your SEO, Online Advertising, Content, Social and Offline marketing materials all being separate pieces is no more. An integrated approach is required for success. Your Content Marketing pieces need to include those SEO fundamentals and have their technical details in line, just as your SEO needs strong content and promotion in order to gain organic presence. SEO doesn’t work without content and content needs SEO to be found. Just like marriage, the pieces need to work together if they’re going to make it in the long run!