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Author: Pamela Muldoon
This episode of Content Marketing 360 is chock full of content marketing goodness! Rand Fishkin, The Wizard of Moz at Moz.com took time out of his busy schedule to share some awesome insights and words of wisdom. Rand has an open, honest and approachable demeanor which provided the perfect landscape to get some insightful words of wisdom. We tackle the current state of SEO and content marketing and how this continues to evolve, often for the good. Is guest posting really dead? Hear what Rand has to say and the right mindset needed to make this a successful content strategy. Hear Rand’s viewpoint on the state of marketing technology and how MOZ continues to evolve, grow and master their place in this space.
Want to hear and see Rand live in person? Rand is the opening keynote for the 4th Annual Content Marketing Retreat hosted by the Langley Center For New Media in Langley, WA on beautiful Whidby Island and presented by FusionSpark Media. This years’ theme is Best Practices In Measuring Content Marketing Results. Register Today!
What is the SEO current state of the union when it comes to content marketing? Does SEO still have a place with content? “Many brands, many individual marketers, lots of hobbyists and enthusiasts, people all over the web. For a variety of reasons, but almost always one of those reasons is to attract visitors, alright? And in order to attract visitors you need to be available through the channels where the visitors are actually looking to consume content. Social media is certainly one of those channels. Email might be another one of those channels. Word of mouth or direct could be another channel. And search is, in my opinion, the most powerful. And for right now at least, it is the one that drives the vast majority of the web’s traffic.”
What does long tail content mean? “And when we talk about long tail versus head of tail. So I was talking about the long tail of content production but in fact, certainly there’s a long tail of keyword demand, right? Between fifteen and twenty percent of all the searches that are performed on Google each day, of the three and a half billion searches that are performed on Google each day, are completely unique. Meaning that in Google’s now seventeen year history, they’ve never been performed before. Which is incredible, right? It’s just remarkable. The variety of what the human mind can type into a search engine is just mind numbing. But this is quite an interesting thing as a content producer. Because you look at the content that you are creating and you might say well I don’t see, you know, I go into into Google Adwords to do some keyword research and try and figure out what people are searching for. And you know, I’m typing in these phrases. I don’t see a lot of people searching for exactly what I want to write about. And that might actually be okay, alright? It might be fine that sometimes when you’re producing content, you just don’t find great keywords to target. And you write it and you produce it anyway. And that is totally okay.”
What is content fatigue? “Yeah I think content fatigue is essentially the premise, the idea that content consumers, as content consumers all of us are getting more savvy. We’re getting more accustomed to seeing more and more stuff. And as a result, much like it is with adverting, right, where click-throughs on the web on banner ads in the early days would be one, two, three percent on average. Now, point zero one percent, right? So you’ve lost sort of two orders of magnitude. Because they just don’t stand out to people any more, right? Like we’ve learned to ignore them. I think content is very similar in this aspect, right? That as we’re exposed to more and more content, all of us, through our Facebook feeds and our Twitter feeds. And for those of us who are more deeply in the technology and digital world through our Pinterest apps and our Feedly and you know, the vast variety of content that’s shared with us over email, all of these things right? It’s tougher and tougher to stand out from the crowd. So content fatigue is essentially this idea that there will be saturation, increasing saturation and that we will begin to feel as marketers that content is producing less value for our organizations. When in fact what’s really happening is consumers of content are becoming pickier. And we need to be more remarkable to stand out from the crowd. And that content marketing essentially will become like many other marketing practices on the web. Where there is saturation and you must be extraordinary to stand out. And that’s okay. I think it just, it carries with it a few important lessons for marketers, right?”
How has MOZ evolved as marketing technology evolves? “So Moz has about eleven things that our software really does, eleven like big things, right? So, you know one of those things might be crawl your site and find errors and warnings and opportunities and that kind of stuff. One of them might be show me information about the links that I’m getting versus my competition or that sort of thing. And a third one might be analyze the search results and tell me why I’m ranking here and this guy’s ranking above me. And on those eleven things I would say there’s probably maybe three, maybe four left where we are the only ones doing it or the best in the world doing it. And for each of those other eight functions, seven or eight functions, there’s somebody else who’s doing usually only exactly that one thing. But they might be doing it better than we are. So that has been kind of a maddening thing. Because you know it feels like yeah well now we have eighty five folks on the engineering team, but gosh we’re fighting eleven battles instead of three. And so that’s been a really interesting thing to come to terms with. And you know the quality that the market demands today is much higher than what it was three, four, five years ago. Certainly the expectations for user experience and for consistency and those kinds of things are not what they once were. And so I would say we’ve struggled mightily to keep up with that. It’s been very hard for us at Moz both to invest in all of these new areas and compete in each of these fronts and to move forward while at the same time trying to scale. One of the things that’s been really hard for us is that, you know, building software for a few hundred users a day, it’s challenging but not that hard. Building software for tens of thousands of users or hundreds of thousands of users every day, which we do have on some of our products. It’s so hard, right? Every new feature you want to add is just a massive increase in complexity. It makes me have tremendous respect for the folks at places like Google and Facebook and Twitter who are keeping up with these hundreds of millions, or billions of users.”
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