What is Content Marketing | Episode 7

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In Episode 7 of the Trades Secret Podcast hosts Devon Hayes and Amanda Joyce talk about content marketing for contractors. Why should you care? Because content marketing is a time investment that will attract qualified leads and build brand trust.

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Transcription:

Amanda Joyce:

Hi, I’m Amanda Joyce.

Devon Hayes:

And I’m Devon Hayes.

Amanda Joyce:

And today’s topic is content marketing for contractors, and here’s why you should care. Content marketing is a time investment that will attract qualified leads and build brand trust, if done properly.

Devon Hayes:

Welcome to Trades Secrets, where we demystify digital marketing to help contractors get the most bang for their marketing bucks.

Amanda Joyce:

This is for you if you’re a contractor looking for actionable marketing insights.

Devon Hayes:

Learn from home services industry experts to elevate your business through simplified marketing strategies.

Amanda Joyce:

Let’s dive into today’s Trades Secret. All right, so this is a fun topic today. I feel like it’s something that people hear marketers talk about all the time, and it’s kind of vague, kind of like SEO, where it’s kind of all encompassing. And I’m excited to just dive in and help people understand what goes into it and how they can really take advantage of it.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I know, I think content marketing, it sounds so overwhelming because it could be so many things. And then you’re like, “What do I do with it? Why would I do it? That sounds like a lot.”

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly, exactly. “Why as a business owner, would I take time out of my day to do it or spend money on it?” And that’s what we’re going to help you understand today. So, let’s dive in. I think to get started, let’s just go over where your content, all this content you’re going to make, where it could show up in Google. Because at the end of the day, that’s what we’re all trying to do is get those eyeballs in Google.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, it’s changed. Yeah, it’s changed so much. It used to be like, “Cool, here’s your little link to the text, and then off you go.” And obviously that was 20 years ago and now it’s a lot different, but even still, I mean, I’m sure people realize it because they search for something and they just don’t even realize what those little sections and those little areas are called on that Google page. They’re like, “Oh, videos. Cool”

Amanda Joyce:

Yeah. Or that there’s strategic ways to actually start ranking in those. And Google’s just going to keep introducing more of these, so it’s fun to keep up on what the latest and greatest is and hopefully take advantage of it before the competition dives in. But Google is trying to compete with all these other attention grabbers out there on the web. And of course they’re going to become more visual all the time, and they’re going to come up with new ways to pull you in and keep you in the search results pages versus… I mean, they’re trying to get you to get in there and scroll and hang out. So, let’s talk about how you can take advantage of all that real estate. So, let’s see here.

The first one that comes to mind, the most important one would be, this is specifically for contractors, I do want to clarify, there are some additional sections of Google search that we could dive in on, but we’re not going there today. We’re going to talk about areas of the search results that you can try to take advantage of as a contractor. So, first and foremost, most important is that Google Business Profile. Hopefully you’ve got one set up and it’s pretty well optimized. If you don’t, now’s the time to make that happen. But just as a reminder, it shows up right there in the right column of the search results if you were to search for a local company in your area. It pops up, gives hours, shows photos, shows the recent posts, all of that. That right there, we could talk about it for hours, but that is an essential component for your contracting business.

In addition, plain text, organic search results that we’ve all seen forever, what Devon was just referring to. That’s what it used to be. And then people also ask, that’s those FAQs that you can see a lot of times, that it’s another way that Google’s trying to keep you in the search results and keep you from clicking off. They’re kind of based on the search that you enter, they’re trying to answer questions right there that you might be eventually trying to get to. Another great thing that you can completely optimize your content to increase the likelihood that you’re going to show up in those. Video rich results. Again, those videos that pop up right there in the search results, you can definitely create content to start dominating in that area. Featured snippets, which is again Google, it’s that zero click search. They don’t want you to leave, so they’re taking a snippet directly from a piece of content and displaying it in the search results so you can find that bit of information, maybe refine your search. It’s again, them just trying to keep you there, active and engaged in the search results.

Review snippets, that’s where they can go pull reviews that you have from other sources out on the web, outside of Google Business, outside of your Google Business Profile. And then logo and the knowledge panel as well. That one probably applies to larger brands, but you can still do some optimizing so that ideally, hopefully as Google continues to evolve, one day you’ll start seeing that pop up in the knowledge panel as well. That was a lot. Did I miss anything when I was just kind of rambling those off, Devon, that you wanted to try and

Devon Hayes:

No, no. I think just big picture, when you think about content marketing, obviously, you want your content to land on Google, but that doesn’t mean that every piece of content is made for Google. Some of it is made for social media specifically, like that short format video is huge, and I know that you can put those on YouTube, which is part of Google, and I know that also those results also end up in Google, but maybe when you create it, the intent is to get a social following and not a position on Google. So, there’s all these different areas within Google that your content can rank on, and then there’s… But that’s one piece of it, and I know you’re diving into all the other types of content-

Amanda Joyce:

Components.

Devon Hayes:

… people can use, and where they’re going, and the healthy marketing mix of what goes where and where they can use them. So, content marketing is a big old beast-

Amanda Joyce:

It’s a beast.

Devon Hayes:

… but it’s effective. It’s effective, right? But-

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly. And if you’re starting out, you don’t have to do every single one of them. That’s the important thing too. We’re going to tell you a whole lot today, but don’t get overwhelmed. We’re also going to talk about how you make a plan, but I think it’s good to understand everything we encompass when we talk about content marketing and then you can decide what makes the most sense for your business and for your budget.

Devon Hayes:

Absolutely. And what do you have the bandwidth for? Do you have a staff, do you have a team of people? Is it just you? And we’re going to dive into all of that, so I won’t and so forth-

Amanda Joyce:

But yeah, let’s just-

Devon Hayes:

… but don’t be overwhelmed.

Amanda Joyce:

… go through and-

Devon Hayes:

We make it digestible. Amanda, yeah, totally. Let’s just jump in-

Amanda Joyce:

Let’s just ramble them off. So, the things that are included in content marketing. Blogging. I mean, that comes to mind with everybody first and foremost. We actually have a blog on our blog about why you need to blog as a business. It is a necessary evil and it can really feed into all of these other pieces of content, because if you write good thought leadership on your blog, then one of the other things we’re going to talk about is email marketing. Then you have content to link to inside your email marketing to drive people back to your website and to help people trust you and learn why you are the best at what you do.

Downloadables, eBooks, white papers, how-to guides, those kind of things. Those definitely fall inside of content marketing and they can be really powerful to engage with people and again, really build that trust that will hopefully make them eventually come back and hire you to complete that, whatever that home service job is. Video, long-form and short-form. Video’s obviously becoming a much bigger focus for us in 2023 as an agency, but it’s critical that you start to focus on that a bit more if you really are trying to make gains in social, make gains in the search results, all those things. And they don’t need to be perfect.

Devon Hayes:

Well, yeah.

Amanda Joyce:

They don’t need to be perfect, that’s the thing.

Devon Hayes:

Right. Especially with the way things are changing. So, there’s all these AI tools out there and most recently ChatGPT is the one everyone’s talking about, but ChatGPT isn’t able to provide video results. And while Google’s got some stuff in the works for how they’re going to compete, video… So, why not start taking advantage of that now, knowing that these competitors of Google aren’t going to be able to compete with that, at least for a few years? And start to… I mean, YouTube’s the number two search engine in the world, so why not get some video on there and help yourself out? But sorry, I digress.

Amanda Joyce:

No, exactly. And then that video plays so well on social, it’s so much more engaging and you can show the personality of your company, you can show your employees out in the field doing what they do every day, just really humanize your brand and it can help with the rankings, it can build the trust. If you don’t belabor over it, it doesn’t have to be really time intensive to create it. You’d probably find that it’s easier to shoot a quick video while you’re out in the field explaining something than it would even be to take pen to paper and write that blog post. So, it should definitely make sure it’s part of that plan.

Website content, adding pages to your site map, that’s another big one. Making sure that your existing pages on your site have solid content on them. That’s a really important component. Before you should go out and start writing lengthy blogs and stuff, make sure you’ve got that content on your website dialed in. Social media posts obviously fall in here, and we’ve all seen graphics like this, but all of this is like a giant circle. All of this is a feeder that they all literally, one feeds into the other, feeds into the other. And so, even though it might sound kind of overwhelming, you can write a really thought-provoking piece of content that really educates your potential buyer, shoot a video that kind of explains it a little bit more and then post that blog to social, post that video to social and it’s all, make sure they’re linking back to each other and it’s just…

Right there, you’ve got a great content strategy already in the works and it’s not like you’re reinventing the wheel. You can be driving home the same point. Podcasts as well. That’s another one. We’re still learning about it, but it seems to be a pretty powerful tool that we’re already just so excited to tap into more. And the list goes on. But that was kind of what initially came to mind when we started talking about what we would suggest for a contractor to try, to consider working into an overarching content marketing strategy.

Devon Hayes:

And just listing out the different types of content. It doesn’t necessarily make sense, podcast we put in there because, well, it’s a form of content, but podcasting just to podcast because you know think you’re going to monetize it and make a bunch of money is not a good idea. Personally, we’re on this journey just because we’re a small agency, Elevation Marketing, and we want to stay small. We like being small, but we have so much information to share, we just kind of figured the best way to share it is with a podcast. It certainly wasn’t with the intent of going to get rich quick after-

Amanda Joyce:

Monetizing it. Or famous.

Devon Hayes:

…a couple of episodes.

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, rich and famous after our parents download it and give us a thumbs-up.

Amanda Joyce:

Our parents and our husbands. Yeah, exactly.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah. Oh, okay. So, let’s see here.

Amanda Joyce:

Where to start with that strategy? So, we’ve talked about everything that could include in it. So, what we recommend, if you’re sitting down and you’re like, “Okay, what do I do with this?” We would recommend laying out a calendar and thinking realistically about how much content you could produce. Maybe you have somebody sitting in the office that’s able to do this and you could have them do three to four social posts a week, and write a blog, and shoot the video, and write a new page for the website. Great. Put it down on a calendar and really look at it holistically before you start plugging in the topics. Really just lay out something realistic that you know can stick to and then you can always, as you start to get better at it, it can grow. But set realistic expectations from the beginning and lay out a calendar.

Then next, really think about your audience. It’s really important to think about this before you ever create a piece of content. And I know you’re probably like, “I know my audience.” But it is a good idea to just sit down and storyboard who they are. Maybe bullet it out. You don’t have to be wordy with it, but really think about who your buyers are, and once you really make yourself put that pen to paper, it’s much easier to think about. Perhaps it’s the housewife in the suburbs with two kids that is your bread and butter that you really want to find, you want to attract more people like that. Then you can start thinking about the content that you can write that is going to speak directly to them, the questions they ask you every time you step into their home to give them an estimate. It really helps you think creatively about how to get in front of those people.

Different levels of the funnel too. This can get kind of… I don’t want to go off on a tangent about this, but the sales funnel, most of us are familiar with it, but people are at different stages of the buying cycle. And you also want to, while you’re outlining that, think about that same persona and when they’re maybe just in the research phase versus when they’re really narrowing down their options and then when they’re ready to buy, write content that speaks to them in each section of that because you want to attract people at all different levels of that. You don’t want to just assume everybody’s ready to hit Buy, because if you’re only talking to them like that, your content’s not going to speak to that person that’s probably your ideal customer, because they’re researching and they’re trying to learn and they understand the value of what you do. You want to make sure you’re really zhuzhing that relationship just as much as you’re zhuzhing the guy that’s like, “Okay, I’m having a plumbing emergency and I need you right now.”

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, that makes me think too, when you have someone at the top of the funnel who is just researching, because let’s admit it, we all want to be smart consumers so we all do research, especially when it comes to any type of contractor. Especially as a woman, I don’t want to get taken advantage of or feel stupid, like I made the wrong decision. “Why didn’t I research X, Y, and Z?” But what I was going to say when you said people are at the top of the funnel and they’re doing the research, I hate it when I go to a website and there’s a lead form right there. I’m like, “Oh.”

Amanda Joyce:

Buy me a steak first.

Devon Hayes:

I don’t know anything about you. Yeah, excuse me. Clutch the pearls. It’s just like, “Give me your name and address. What can I do for you right now?” And you’re like, “Who are you? Can you solve my problem? Why should I trust you? Why should I give you that information?” I get it’s probably great for conversions maybe, but for me, it’s like a Quicken Loans versus going with a mortgage lender that is someone that you know and is going to talk you through the process, versus just submitting your name, your Social Security credit report, and then they whip out whatever loan they think you can qualify for, versus someone who knows that you’re maybe a teacher and you could qualify for a specific loan.

Anyways, going down a rabbit hole. But as a buyer, I like to read pieces of content that make me feel knowledgeable and I like seeing the same brand name over and over, no matter what question I ask, they’re answering it for me and not trying to sell me always. They’re just providing value through their content, answering the questions that I have as a consumer.

Amanda Joyce:

Yeah, absolutely. And that actually makes me think, when we were just speaking about the different types of Google search results, want to make sure, if you are trying to optimize to rank in those, you want to make sure that you’re reaching out to people and answering those questions and pulling them in. And if they’re seeing you in the rich results, and they’re seeing you and the people also ask before they ever even get to your downloadable white paper that explains why now’s the time to invest in solar or whatever it may be, that continuous brand recognition… they say what, people need to see your brand eight times? So, if you can knock that out in the search results, get in front of them quite a few times, you’re already kind of dating before they even get to your website and then they’re a little warmer to you. And then maybe if you don’t slap them in the face with the, “Give me your information,” they just might give you their information.

Devon Hayes:

Especially in 2023, I don’t think we can say it enough that there should be more benefit outcome statements. And we joke about this, but there’s some industries over others that are notorious for, “Me, me, me. I’m so great, look at me, I got this. Woo.”

Amanda Joyce:

Kiss the muscles. Yeah.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, versus telling you what you are going to do for them, and the outcome they can expect if they work with you. So, that story branding is, I think bigger and bigger, and it really develops that sense of trust instead of that, like I said, Quicken Loans versus your mortgage lender that you know, that’s in a smaller firm.

Amanda Joyce:

Yeah, you know them by their first name and you can pick up the phone and call them if you needed them. Yeah.

Devon Hayes:

Exactly.

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly. Okay. So, once you’ve outlined that audience and you’re thinking about… you’re ready to talk to them in every area of the buying cycle, it’s time to brainstorm those topics. And this is the fun part, this is when you get to really think about what makes you such an expert in your field, and maybe you are a roofer who knows how to work the insurance process. That is a strength and maybe your other competitors don’t have your knowledge. Write to it, talk about it, help people understand it. That is how you separate yourself and you’re not just writing another blog post about why it’s best to have a roof inspection at this time of year, whatever. Really start-

Devon Hayes:

And we get those, we get the place for those types of blogs. But nowadays content just for content’s sake like those blogs used to be for, they served a role, but now it’s like what are-

Amanda Joyce:

Google’s not favoring them.

Devon Hayes:

… those questions that are asked all the time?

Amanda Joyce:

Yeah, exactly. And at the end of the day, their goal is to give searchers quality information. And that’s what you want to do anyway. If you’re going to take the time to write a blog post or you’re going to pay someone to write it, have them write something that’s compelling, that’s really going to position you as a thought leader. So, as you’re outlining it, now that it’s time to start brainstorming those topics, just sit down and start thinking about the questions you get asked all the time, the things you wish that a homeowner knew before they even reached out to you, the goodwill you could give them so that they are going to be a better, more educated buyer.

And even if they find you and they’re in another market, you’re still going to help them make a smart decision. And then maybe one day they’ll be talking to someone they know in your market and say, “Hey, I noticed this company and I loved something that I learned from them.” So, it can have a halo effect. So, just make it quality content. And a lot of these other pieces just fall into place naturally. Google’s going to like you better and they can tell the difference between content for content’s sake and content that is truly enjoyable to a reader.

Devon Hayes:

Especially with their new Quality Rater Guidelines that came out, this nice 400-page article about what they’re looking for, but they actually have actual humans, not bots, crawling through and looking at results and looking at the content and they have a checklist of what they’re looking at to grade the quality of your content. So, it’s a different game in 2023 with your content. I always say this, but old timey SEO, it was like plug in your keyword 50 times into a blog post and then post it, and then in the background in the same color as the background, have your keyword another 50 times because it was the quantity of the keywords. And that’s early 2000s, that’s some black hat garbage SEO, but it used to be quantity and now it’s so different, and it really is quality. And now they have, like I said, quality raters and there’s a whole guideline, and they’re looking at your content, they’re looking at what’s displaying on that search engine results page and rating whether or not it should be there. So, you really-

Amanda Joyce:

And everyone’s benefiting. Consumers are so much better off because of that and people trust the search results more because of that. And it’s forcing all of us just to sit down and take the time if we’re going to do it, to do it right. And I think it’s brilliant and that’s why we do what we do.

Devon Hayes:

Absolutely.

Amanda Joyce:

After you’ve picked those topics, it’s time to do keyword research to make sure you’re at least tying it to a keyword that people are searching, that has volume and that… We have to make sure we watch it here, I do not want to get too technical. But there are free tools out there, Semrush is a great one, it’s pretty user-friendly. You can hop in there and enter a keyword and find out what kind of volume there is on it. You can find out the difficulty score, which is a really important one to look at too. If it’s got 3,000 searches a month and it’s got a really high difficulty rating and then you go look and the people ranking for it are Home Depot and Angie’s List, probably go ahead and skip that keyword. It’d be nice to rank for it, but let’s focus on high value, high buyer intent keywords for your local market, that are not too competitive.

Devon Hayes:

More attainable.

Amanda Joyce:

Yes, exactly. Cost-per-click’s another good one to look at. And those tools, you can see if there is a cost-per-click associated with it, it indicates that people are actually advertising on that keyword, which tells you that there’s buyer intent and there’s a reason they’re spending money on it. So, it’s a good idea to maybe over time, make the time investment in organic to try to eventually rank for it rather than need to pay for it. I mean, there’s so much more we could say about keyword research-

Devon Hayes:

I know, yeah. We’ll do another podcast. There’s clicks per search ratio. There’s a ton-

Amanda Joyce:

There’s so much out there.

Devon Hayes:

There’s a giant rabbit hole, but ultimately I think you covered it best. You just want to make sure there’s a decent amount of search volume each month. You want to make sure it’s not too competitive, and if there’s a… what is it, a CPC, a cost-per-click amount listed, any of these free keyword research tools, you can kind of Google and pick which ones you like. But if it’s got those three things, that’s the very, very basic level to start at, and just take a peek at that. And usually keyword difficulty, it’s like 0 to 100. If you’re just starting out and you have a brand new domain and you’ve never done this, you want to stick to a difficulty under 30. So, that’s all we’ll say about keyword research at this juncture, until the next podcast.

Amanda Joyce:

Insane.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, yeah. Stay tuned, download, subscribe, give us five star reviews-

Amanda Joyce:

Check back.

Devon Hayes:

Sorry, so getting us back on track here. Okay. After you do a little bit of keyword word research, you kind of vet out what you think it is that people are searching to find the service or the piece of content you’re writing. A great example was solar rebates. See how people are searching that. Are they searching, “Solar rebates Colorado,” or just “Solar rebates,” “Solar rebates Denver”? Figure out… And then, that’s what we mean when we say figure out a focus keyword phrase, because what comes to mind to you as a professional might be completely different than what comes to mind as a user searching.

Amanda Joyce:

Completely different. Exactly. Making sure you check into that because just one more quick note of that and then I promise I’ll stop. But like Devon said, what you think people search does not mean that’s what people search. So, it’s really important. I remember years and years ago, my uncle hired some SEO firm and he told me that he just rattled off keywords that he told them he wanted. And I said, “Did they research it?” And he was like, “No, I just told them what I wanted to rank for.” And they were not good terms. So, you need to spend the time making sure that people actually search that way before you start writing to it, otherwise you’re going to write… you could write brilliant content and people aren’t going to find it. So, just put that thinking hat on when you’re doing it. Okay, now we’re going to move on to writing the content.

Devon Hayes:

Woohoo.

Amanda Joyce:

Woohoo.

Devon Hayes:

Write or creating.

Amanda Joyce:

So, you go research and pick the topic. Exactly, or creating. Good point. I’m probably going down the rabbit hole a little bit too much, just in a content or written content, but we’ll start there. You sit down, I like to outline first, come up with my headline, my subheads, and then go back and fill it in. I find it’s easier to make sure that you have a good narrative there, but one of the pro tips we always like to use before we even… once we pick the keyword, we’ve got the topic, we go look what is ranking for that keyword and go analyze the top three to five pages for it and just make sure that you’re keeping in mind what Google’s favoring for that keyword. You don’t want to plagiarize, you don’t want to copy it. Some of it you might be like, “That doesn’t even apply. I don’t even want to include that.” But it’s just helps you understand, it gives you a little bit of guidance as you then sit down and start writing, and you’ll be-

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, and I was-

Amanda Joyce:

… how surprised how quickly a nice piece can come together. Sorry, go ahead.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah. No, I was just going to say, you mentioned you start with an outline and you’re like, head, subhead. So, I just wanted to clarify on that point, is when you read a blog and there’s a bold headline, and then maybe in smaller text it might still be bold or it might not, but that’s kind of a sub-headline is what she’s referring to. And then there’s just the body of the content itself. So, you just… looking at what the headlines are on the top three results, and then after that big bold headline, what’s the next headline? Or is it just a paragraph that answers a question that was in the headline? So, that’s what she’s referring to, when Amanda, my brilliant partner over there says, “I look at the heads and the subheads and the body.” We just wanted to clarify that because-

Amanda Joyce:

Sorry.

Devon Hayes:

… if you’re new to this, it could be a little bit confusing.

Amanda Joyce:

Thank you, Devon. It’s a very good point. And then after that, once you’re happy with the piece, you publish it to your website. Hopefully you’ve got an easy to use WordPress site or something that makes it easy for you to just go at it yourself. If you’re working with an agency and you’re going through this whole process with them, hopefully they’re leaning on you for your knowledge and expertise, and then maybe they’re going off and writing it and sending it to you for you to review. You don’t necessarily have to do the legwork, but one way or the other, it’s really good for that kind of flow to happen. The research and the analysis before anyone necessarily just starts writing.

On that same note, you can use this same kind of process if you’re creating video or if you’re working on social posts, you want to really kind of think through things and you can write, create social posts that then turn around and promote these blog posts. So, this is your thought leadership piece and then, now we need to go out and socialize it around on all of your social channels, link back to it. You can pull excerpts out, you don’t just have to post it once. You can pull out different pieces of it and keep revisiting it over time. It’s just, get the most out of that content that you’re spending time creating.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, and kind of daisy chain it. So, if you create a blog post, you can turn it into an image carousel for your social media, and you can post that on your Google business profile and then the images can link back to the blog post that maybe you already posted, but you can kind of daisy chain your content to really try to maximize each piece you write and get the most out of it.

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly. Okay, advanced, once it’s all published and you want to make sure it’s working and all the juice is worth the squeeze, you can go look and see if it’s being indexed in Google. So, Devon, do you want to talk to that?

Devon Hayes:

Yes. Yeah, it’s really funny, you can tell Google exactly what you want it to index, and that doesn’t mean that it will. So, you just want to check without… There’s the Google Search Console, which if you’re familiar with that, good for you. If you’re already familiar, you probably know exactly how to check if a URL is indexed. But I think for most people, the easiest way is you can do a site search on Google. So, this is just, I wouldn’t say advanced, but a way that maybe you haven’t used Google before. So, you type the word site and then you do a colon, and then without a space you can paste the URL to your blog post or to even just your website, and that will spit out only indexed results correlated with whatever site or URL you put in that search bar. So, then you can look for your blog post.

Because we even had this on our site. I mean, we didn’t do our own work, we just assumed Google would be indexing our stuff and it didn’t. So, we had to go through the legwork and actually submit the URL for indexing. And so, you just don’t want to trust that you’re automatically going to have your content indexed. So, it’s just a good stomach check, gut check after you published it within 72 hours, see if it’s on the old Google.

Amanda Joyce:

Awesome. And then lastly, you just need to go back and analyze it. You need to take a look over time, use Google Analytics. If you’ve got Search Console, it’s a great tool for analyzing how your content’s doing. Look at your social posts around your different pieces of content, how are people engaging in it? What’s rising to the top? What’s the cream, and how can you continue to create more content in that style or on that topic? Whatever it may be that seems to be attracting the right audience. As long as you’re kind of going through this creative process and then going back and leaning on the data to help inform the next round of content you plan, you’re going to find that content marketing is a really valuable tool that just makes your brand more trustworthy. It makes people love you more, it makes people lean on you, it pays off in spades, over and over again.

Devon Hayes:

Yeah, absolutely. And then, I was going to even say that we tried to keep this super top level, but you can get down to content clusters and there’s… But we just tried to imagine you’ve got a small team, you don’t have eight different content marketers working for you. So, we were like, “All right, if this was our business, what are the basics? How can we simplify this the most?” And this list is what we’ve come up with. So, I don’t know, is it time to summarize? Let’s see, I think we talked about, are we being indexed? And then, oh, we can’t skip this one, analyzing your work, Google Analytics, seeing how it’s performing, your engagement on social. Visits to your website or the post itself, specifically probably the content that you’re writing, but-

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly, using that data… I mean, first of all, it just allows you to understand what your investment’s doing for you so it can be that gut check that you need, but that’s what you can use to inform that next content calendar that you’re going to create maybe it helps you pick the theme you’re going to write towards the next month. Sometimes doing that, writing towards a theme can be helpful to just help you think about the calendar as a whole. And maybe if one topic really seemed to resonate, you can really kind of go a little bit deeper on that and daisy chain further and explore it more and hopefully attract more interested engaged buyers as a result.

Devon Hayes:

Absolutely. And then obviously conversions, tracking those, but even if you’re in an industry… I think construction industry, you should be happy at a 2%, ecstatic at a 5% and 10%, you’re killing it. But what’s really hard with that too is, we have a client where there is one piece of content that he gets like 26,000 views in what, is it a year that he got for one blog?

Amanda Joyce:

Yeah.

Devon Hayes:

So, if he converted 1% of that traffic, that would be insane. So, you got to take it in stride too, when we talk about conversions. But if you think about that, content marketing, that one blog post, as part of our monthly contract with them, and say we write four blog posts a month and we segment it down to just whatever that one blog post costs. One blog post is nominal, brought over 26,000 visitors to his website, 26,000 people to his website from one single blog post that will never be taken away and he owns it forever. So, content marketing can be so powerful if you really put the user first and you really give your knowledge away. There’s no secrets with content marketing. You are literally telling people everything in the best way, in the most digestible format possible. Right?

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly.

Devon Hayes:

So, that alone, makes the case for content marketing.

Amanda Joyce:

Yeah, and also is important to keep in mind too, that of the 26,000 users that he gets to the website for that one piece of content, they might not convert that day on that piece of content, but it doesn’t mean they’re not picking up the phone and calling him later out of the Google Business Profile. There’s a huge halo effect on that. Talk about a way to really implant your brand and start to gain that trust, because they could be super top-of-funnel at that point, but ideally they’re going to come back to you eventually because you educated them and helped get them to the point that they’re ready to make a buying purchase.

Devon Hayes:

Absolutely. Absolutely. Okay, so let’s see here. Things you want to take away from this content marketing podcast. We’re going to try and summarize this. Amanda, are we… okay, best way to summarize this. Number one, creating an easy-to-follow content calendar that’s going to tell you how many times a week you’re posting, and where, and what. And then comes, make sure you’re speaking to your right audience. That’s two. Number three-

Amanda Joyce:

Exactly. Make sure, and then pick those really compelling topics that are going to pull people in and educate them, and then-

Devon Hayes:

Publish it.

Amanda Joyce:

… complete that keyword research. Yep. Make sure you pick the keyword-

Devon Hayes:

Yeah.

Amanda Joyce:

… that is really relevant. Write said content, publish it on your website, socialize it and-

Devon Hayes:

I don’t know if that was concise. I was trying to do it one, two, three, four, five. I don’t know if we got one, realistic content calendar. Two, know your audience. Three, brainstorm your content marketing ideas. Four, make sure, research those ideas. Five, publish, analyze, and revisit. Yeah.

Amanda Joyce:

Wash, rinse, repeat. There you go.

Devon Hayes:

I’m like, what’s that? There’s a phrase for that. Yeah, perfect. We’ll outline this in the description of the podcast because we know there’s kind of a lot there. You guys, feel free to pause and rewind as much as you need to, but we’re going to put this in the podcast descriptions. As always, we thank you for listening. We know we get-

Amanda Joyce:

Yay.

Devon Hayes:

… really detailed with you. We truly are just trying to help you do this yourselves. You can always hire a qualified agency to do it for you as well, but we really appreciate you listening, and it says a lot about you and your dedication to your business if you can make it through these really detailed podcasts with us in contractor marketing.

Amanda Joyce:

So, thanks so much for tuning in guys, and we hope that we will see you again next week.

Devon Hayes:

Thanks. Bye.

Amanda Joyce:

That was today’s trade secret. Thanks for listening.

Devon Hayes:

Did you find this helpful? We’re just getting started.

Amanda Joyce:

Subscribe, and don’t miss our next reveal.

Devon Hayes:

Until next time.

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