With web development becoming more accessible to the common person (i.e. not having to train for years at college), the question is asked as to why companies do not put the effort into developing an appropriate web presence. We aren’t even saying dynamic, engaging, or out-of-the-ballpark awesome. Simply looking for an adequate web presence that properly represents their brand.
I mean, if you and your business are looking at content marketing and amping that up for 2016, you do need to have a web presence, right? So, what is it that is standing in your way, to move forward with content marketing that makes a difference for you in 2016?
And, what about that ROI (Return on Investment). You see, it isn’t necessarily about “cheap” content marketing, or even free tools. Though, that is always helpful. I mean, cheap or free does give you a better ROI, assuming that there is some money coming in as a result of your efforts. But, there is also such a thing as spending money and making that much more than what you spend that your ROI is quite impressive.
It isn’t about how little you spend. It is about how much more your profit (ROI).
With the ROI in mind, we still want to consider lower investment alternatives. After all, even WordPress is free and can be used to develop a web presence. The beauty of that is that you can get up and running quickly and still have options to improve as time goes forward, investing time and money if/when it is needed… always keeping that eye on the bottom line and the ROI.
Of course, even with the use of free software, there is still the requirement of a modest amount of time dedicated to working on the site/blog. That said, even a company with virtually no advertising budget can dramatically expand their customer base by increasing their traffic and their brand exposure.
These companies should be focusing on the things that help to bring in the revenue. On of those areas is building trust and can often be managed through the starting of an email newsletter, in conjunction with their blogging efforts. Of course, that requires some engagement, too, to build the relationship and to build the trust.
Creating content is indeed expensive and can be difficult to distribute before a business has established itself as a trustworthy source. An ideal strategy would be to work with a creation and marketing partner. But if you are a smaller business, not ready to research and not ready to allocate a huge amount of money for such a collaboration, there are concrete steps to take to begin developing the content strategy.
In many cases, developing this strategy, and, more importantly, getting down to the content development, has to do with some creative and innovative thinking. It also involves dedicating your time and possibly delegating additional employees when the situation is ripe.
Assuming you are satisfied with your original company website, you will want to post your blog on the same root domain. You should update your website with a link to all blog spaces you create. Many companies find that they prefer the blog to be on the home page or accessible from the home page with a few blog posts showing up on that home page. This is a popular trend. However, if you already have an established site, it may be easier to install the WordPress software (as an example) on a subdomain that has been set up for that purpose.
As we have mentioned, an ideal industry standard for blog domain hosting is WordPress. It has a shared code platform with hundreds of development contributors providing innovative improvements on a daily basis.
Managed WordPress hosting service plans can save you a lot of time and troubleshooting on the technical back-end tasks of maintaining your site. The pricing is reasonable and especially reasonable if you are challenged in the technical area and your time is worth more than it would take to figure it out for yourself.
The managed plans are available for as low as $4/month with providers such as wpengine.com. You could even wait on arranging that and try out the management yourself (it is considered easy). But they can also support more complex theme design solutions if needed, and that is something that you may want to consider, down the road.
You should post articles (blog posts) weekly to keep current. This practice will also eventually aid in distinguishing your content as reputable. Creating that image is what increases search engine ranking and linking traffic. You can do the writing yourself if you’re disciplined, for probably one to four hour’s worth of time each week. Or you can assign the task to employees if you have some good writers and can establish a consistent schedule.
Another option for a source of blog content, which is still well within the range of lower budget online marketing strategies, is to hire a freelance writer. For about $150-200/article, a business blog can contain the highest quality content with the most aggressive research, that is most likely to spawn links that increase traffic to the site, and to impress potential customers. And these most prominent features can also supplement writing by the businesses’ staff to reduce the cost of keeping the site fresh with consistently renewed content.
Remember, we really want to train our minds to focus on ROI rather than a question of “How low can you go” when it comes to spending.
Sometimes that is really tricky to separate in our minds. Like we have mentioned, spending less does mean that we have that chance at a better ROI (increased profit), so they do relate. However, if we only focus on how little we can spend, we may miss opportunities to truly turn a profit and really see that ROI soar. That is why we want to learn how to look at situations through the ROI glasses rather than the “low price” glasses, even though there is some crossover there.
If you are paying $200 per article, even if you do it once per month, and that results in massive traffic, you may be able to increase your sales and your bottom line. The key thing is that it will increase your credibility as knowing your stuff and a go-to place. If your writers are writing about things that relate to whatever product or service you offer, you have a combination that is more likely to increase that ROI.
As your content placement efforts expand your customer base, it is wise to reinvest to improve content. Eventually, you can work on arranging to distribute free resources such as E-books. That practice will serve to increase leads to your site.
The cycle continues and what started on a shoestring budget will started growing to fill your pockets.