Remember when content marketing was no more than stuffing a website or blog full of empty keywords and links to help us get a better spot in search engines? You know, the times before the word “Google” became a universal verb and when a penguin was nothing more than a cute black-and-white flightless bird. Well times have certainly changed. “Google” is a verb and the word "penguin" has a whole new meaning, especially when it comes to content marketing.
Google released a major algorithm update called “Panda” in February 2011. This major change caused many search engine popular websites to be devalued due to thin, duplicate or stolen content. Webmasters quickly learned that in order to have a good page rank, web content must be original, relevant and not chock-full of advertising. In order for Google to make its restrictions on web content a little clearer, another update,“Penguin,” was released in April 2012. This algorithm change placed tighter guidelines on what it considered to be web spam. Penguin downgraded sites that contained unnatural links, content spinning, and those over-optimized by keyword stuffing. So, just how does Penguin affect your content marketing strategy?
Blog and website design to get the right kind of attention
Whether you are writing web content for your business website or blog, the same rules apply. All content must first be original. The days of simply copying text from another site or blog are over, if you intend to market your content successfully. Link popularity can be very important, as long as you have the right kind of links that are relevant to your business. One of the most important aspects of effective content marketing is that your content be relevant and current. You can write the posts yourself, or you can buy blog posts, but either way you need the content to be original.
Content marketing through guest blogging
Many blog owners will be happy to accept your guest post on their blog. Your guest post should be written because you want to educate people with substantive content, not because you simply want to create links back to your website. Google appears to understand the difference and your site’s reputation may be damaged by continually linking back to your website.
Content marketing through social media
Prior to Penguin, the quality of those sharing your blog posts on social media didn't really matter. Now, the ranking of your website or blog will be affected by the quality of the links. If you have 100 spam sites linking to your post, this could cause more damage than good. Also, you may want to start linking your posts to your own social media sites.
If you don’t like it enough to link to it - why should anyone else?
Content marketing is getting more demanding due to the Penguin update and the expected updates yet to come. At BlogMutt, we aren't pure SEO consultants, but we do recognize and deliver quality, relevant blog content. Contact us today and we'll help you take your content marketing efforts to the next level.
Editor's note: As blogging experts, we're always on top of Google's evolving search methodology. With the panda and penguin updates, Google has indeed gotten rid of cheap, shortcut SEO tactics, and is even planning a new update to Panda soon. Rich, consistent content, however, is the one element of good SEO that doesn't change. And this content -- timely and well written, is an example of just what you need for your site. Thanks much to the BlogMutt writer who created it. (For an explanation of this series, see this post.) -- Scott