So, your brand promise is clear, your website is complete, and it clearly and compellingly outlines the benefits of what you do – and why your target client would need to pay you for doing it. You have taken those brand visuals and messaging and made sure all of your social media channels are consistent and the message is resonating.
Congratulations, your ‘house’ is in order, and it is finally time to invite guests to visit – and that means it is time to build a content marketing strategy.
I use the house analogy because it makes sense to me. I am still very much my mother’s daughter, and she would never consider inviting company over if the house was a disaster. “What would people think?!”
Your website is your house.
It is the one place where you drive all of your traffic, and it is usually the place where your clients decide if they want to explore your services further. It needs to be ‘company ready’ before the invites go out. So, building a content strategy before your website is complete and working well makes no sense because your content marketing strategy drives decision-makers to your site.
Now that we have the order of operations fully in hand, let’s talk about building content strategically. By content, I mean blogs, articles, videos, podcasts, infographics – everything you use to showcase your experience as a speaker and your credibility in your target industry. Everything that makes you an expert who speaks. Creating quality content can offer increased web traffic to your website, an SEO boost and, when repurposed effectively, a practically unlimited supply of posts on your social media networks.
So, as a busy speaker, how do you create and manage your content effectively and strategically? I will be honest; this is not a quick one-and-done scenario. Like many other elements of running a speaking business, it takes a bit of time and thought – but it can be done. The easiest option is to hire a company like PibworthPS to manage it for you so you can concentrate on the things that you do best and that drive your revenue – but for those of you who do want to take it on, here is an outline of the basic steps, and some helpful “how-to tips” that you can use to create and implement a content marketing strategy that works for you.
The Basics of Keyword Research
When most people write a blog, they simply get an idea and start writing. It sounds intuitive. “Hey – I know something about this – I should write about it”, and yes – and no. As with all marketing, we first ask ourselves why we are doing this task, and what we want it to accomplish. With blog writing, we want it to accomplish a few things – we want it to help establish our expertise as an expert who speaks, which means we need to get the right eyes on our content – and that means we also need to leverage it for Search Engine Optimization.
That means before we write, we verify that the topic is useful and relevant to your target audience. In terms of internet marketing – the word ‘topic’ can be interchanged with the term ‘keyword or key phrase. A keyword is simply a fancy term for a topic, and you are using them all the time. Every time you do a search on Google, you are doing a keyword search. You type in ‘professional speaker’ and the search engine kicks out webpages that have those exact words featured prominently in that website or blog. I know the experts make it sound super complicated (and getting a page to rank CAN be difficult, don’t get me wrong) but the basics are simple.
The right topic (keywords) + used effectively in well-written content = ranking on search engines and the right eyes on your content
Yes, that is a very simplistic way of laying it out, but you get the gist.
When you’re looking for keywords, the easiest way to start is a simple Google search. Choose a keyword or phrase that you think your clients might be using to find you as a speaker. If your expertise is in leadership, for example, you might try “leadership speaker” or “leadership expert” or “leadership speaker in Canada”. When I do keyword research for PibworthPS, I use words like “professional speaker marketing”, “keynote speaker marketing”, and even “Marketing VA for Speakers” After all – although I am not a VA, that is a search term my potential clients are using.
After you’ve searched for a keyword, scroll to the bottom of the page, and look for the list of terms with the little search icon beside them. Those are additional keywords you could use.
There are a handful of tricks to make keyword research simple and stress-free. Check out Backlinko’s “Keyword Research Strategies” guide and definitive keyword research guide to walk through them in detail. I also really like Neil Patel’s free tool https://app.neilpatel.com/en/ubersuggest You get 3 thorough searches per day with the free version.
In our next post, we will dive right into the key features of writing a good blog post.