A wise mentor once lamented to me, "You are ahead of your time, Julianne. Perhaps just slow down and let the world catch up”.
It finally has.
He was lamenting because back when I had a conference management business I'd been asked to stage an expo called the Property & Investment Expo. With some financial backing, a small team of us had worked tirelessly on getting this event off the ground only to be stymied by disbelief in the concept of addressing financial planning and real estate investment under the same roof.
That was in 1999 and in the years that followed expos on this topic became extremely popular.
I couldn’t wait for the world to catch up so I moved onto my next innovation – writing and publishing newsletters for financial planners.
In the beginning, I faced many more doubters. I remember being asked what I did for a living and receiving a look of sheer surprise followed by words to the effect, “there’s a business in that?!”
Eighteen successful years later I can respond with a resolute "YES!".
We called it newsletter writing in those days – now it’s known as Content Marketing (yes, with capitals) and it has finally become all the rage – worldwide.
But what I saw back in 2000 as something simple yet powerful has morphed into something so complex it scares a lot of people away.
There are so many obstacles you can encounter in the Content Marketing process. For starters, maybe you’re still working on building your army of devoted readers – your clients and potential clients.
Or maybe you don’t know how to get people to visit your website so they can read your well-crafted words on all things financial.
Creating website content is only half of the battle – promoting it needs some serious legwork, as well.
If that sounds like your challenge, it might be easier to rely on third-party platforms, such as news sites, and let them take on some of the responsibility.
An option is to simply drop links into your website taking your hard-won traffic off to visit a high ranking media site (btw… this is why the news sites are so highly ranked – thanks to these links).
But sending your potential clients to another website doesn’t make sense, does it?
Maybe a listing in a web directory is an easier alternative? After all, they’re free to list your business and also rank highly in searches. You can even upload your own content.
The problem is that while you’ve spent hours and probably a lot of money creating a great website that shows your visitors how you can help them achieve their financial goals, you won’t reap the benefits.
Instead of increasing traffic to your website and building your client base, you are boosting traffic to the web directories. (And you will probably be listed on a page with other local financial planners so your content has helped to promote your competitors.)
Here are three sound reasons why you should publish content on your website.
Fact: a static website without updates of any kind is as good as dead in the eyes of both Google and your potential clients.
On the other hand, the more frequently you post fresh content on your website, the more frequently search engines will stop by to visit your domain.
Search engines use crawlers that index websites based on various factors, such as keywords, relevancy, and how often a website is updated. So, every time you post new content, crawlers take notice and re-arrange your website’s ranking.
And everyone knows that ranking high is extremely important. Most of us now have a short attention span and if you’re not listed on the first page there’s little chance someone will click on “2” or “Next”.
However, that doesn’t mean you should spam your readers with low-quality newsletter or blog content. Quality, not quantity is the secret here.
All businesses strive to become their industry’s authoritative voice, so they focus their content marketing efforts toward this goal.
The best way to become an influencer in your niche is by sticking to SEO’s oldest rule – “relevant content is king”. The more useful and valuable your content is; the more visitors you will attract.
And the more visits and engagement your website gets; the greater authority you display in Google’s eyes.
More than that, when prospects find your content helpful, they will begin to trust you. And, the more they trust you, the more likely they are to become your clients.
When you publish high quality website content regularly, you have an opportunity to optimise your content with relevant keywords that can attract visitors to your page.
For instance, as you add new content on a weekly basis, you can focus each article on a specific list of keywords, such as “wealth planning for Gen Y” or “experienced financial planner in Toowoomba.”
Each time you incorporate a relevant keyword in your website content, you help search engines recognise your site as a place that searchers can visit for their financial planning needs.
It’s pretty simple really.
Every article that is indexed by Google is a new opportunity to generate leads for your business. According to one report*, SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate, compared to outbound leads with only a 1.7% close rate.
It’s not an overstatement to say that quality content is what sets great businesses apart from their competitors.
By relying on third-party directories or linking to news sites, you’re sabotaging the potential of your website – and your business.
Hey, if you freaked out when you read “as you add new content on a weekly basis”, you really need to have a better look at what’s offered on this website – quality content ready for you to use. There are no excuses anymore! Join us.
*Imforza website www.imforza.com Blog - 8 SEO stats that are hard to ignore