18 months ago I decided to stop trying to sell my services and instead try to create useful content that helped people. I did this by transforming my main lead generation site (this one) into a blog covering web topics for small business owners.
Marketing people refer to it as content marketing. The concept is that you create a lot of useful content and you build a following in the area you work in. This is not only useful to build an audience to potentially market to but also because Google is looking for authority and more authority should mean better search engine rankings.
This has certainly been the case for me and my business but there have also been some surprising consequences.
Who is Bolt Creative
Bolt Creative are an award winning San Francisco based independent game company and creator of the massive hit iPhone game “Pocket God”. See this wikipedia entry for more.
Pocket God has sold over 6.5 million units and has spread to other platforms, such as Android, iPad and Facebook.
When Apple announced their 10 billion app downloads Pocket God was 3rd on the list! Here is a screenshot.
How they heard of us
Late last year as a result of taking this new approach to marketing I sought out a few other blogs around the world to write articles for.
I created a post on the open source CMS competition between WordPress and Joomla! and Weblogs Tools Collection agreed to publish it for me. The post was called How WordPress Beat Joomla and while it was somewhat controversial it did open up a good discussion on the site and was also translated into Russian!
But another thing happened as a result of me posting that article. The online project manager for Bolt Creative happend to read the article. He liked it and was interested in using WordPress for his site and after some discussions engaged us to build their new website.
The new site brought together their hugely popular Blog (migrated from Blogspot) and showcased all of their products and offerings in a multi-device friendly theme (previous site was built on Flash).
Some other results from our switch to content marketing
Content marketing is one of my passion areas in fact my business doesn’t do any other form of advertising.
Since turning my main website (this one) into a blog I have had some great results including:
- My site now ranks number 1 in Google for ‘website design‘ and is on the front page for ‘web design’ ‘website development’ and many more big ticket keywords (at the time of writing – rankings fluctuate).
- Not only have I improved for big ticket keywords I’ve also tripled the amount of smaller keywords I’m getting traffic for.
- Average monthly visits have tripled and I am getting around 1 web enquiry per day (not counting phone calls).
- My email list has doubled and I am getting close to 100 new signups per month.
- I now have a bit of a point of difference when compared with other web companies and I no longer have to focus on the 1 thing I totally suck at (sales).
The thing I like the most about content marketing however is not many other people are doing it. Sure there are lots of people blogging but I don’t see too many small businesses throwing all of their weight behind a content marketing strategy. Methods like Yellow Pages and Adwords are far easier for business owners to just sign off and implement. But for that reason they are hugely competitive and crazily overpriced (see the real cost of Adwords).
Content marketing is not something you can easily do unless you put the time in yourself. And for that reason it represents a big opportunity for small business owners.
Have you embraced content marketing?
Please comment below if you have started creating content in your business as a marketing strategy.
What results have you seen?