Finding the balance between creating quality content that both performs well in search engines and pleases readers is an uphill battle if you don’t know what to look for. By looking back to the blogs that did well in 2018, we can learn from that history to continue improving.
The top blogs from 2018 ranked well because they were in one of the categories that we’ve listed below. Some of the best blogs even fell into more than just one category. Understanding these categories will help you when your writing your 2019 blogs for sure!
As with most any big topic swirling around, somebody has an opinion about it, and with the Internet, that somebody is mightily equipped to share it. Often, that opinion is met with an opposing one and then supported to the extreme by another; and so begins the viral blog.
With changes in the digital marketing and Google landscapes coming nearly everyday, there’s always something to talk about—and always a great opportunity to create content that summons the masses.
Whether you share it out of agreement or out of a fiery opposition, your share will cause others to react in agreement or in staunch criticism, and the post will continue to inspire interactions. These likes, comments, shares, and simple traffic to the blog post’s website are valuable regardless.
You can either be part of the conversation around someone else’s viral post (even posting your reaction as a blog and riding their wave of traffic), or you can create content based on a hot topic and stir the pot yourself; then just sit back and watch the traffic come.
Basically, if you feel strongly about something in your specific industry, let your fingers do the talking; just be sure you have evidence to back it all up! Chances are, there are others who also have strong feelings on the topic, which will that much-desired traffic.
It’s all this attention—good or bad—that will send you up in the rankings. Because of this, it’s important to know that highly ranked, highly opinionated blogs typically lead the viewer to a site of a related industry or area of expertise when backing up their claims. The authors of these kinds of blogs usually have authority in their topic.
Original Content Creation
People in today’s society love to research. Hungry? Google “restaurants near me.” Suffering from some serious wanderlust? Check out the best bed-n-breakfast options through your favorite search engine. Need to write a paper for college? We doubt you’ll exclusively use your library.
It’s no wonder that such a vast majority of people are using the Internet across virtually any area of inquisition; it’s because many people feel more comfortable making decisions based on facts, numbers, and statistics, rather than on a whim or a “feeling” they get. This especially applies when it comes to our marketing dollars.
Studies show that 2018’s top Google searches were in the categories of: maps, news, calculators, and weather among others. This is the proof in the pudding that we humans like to collect data in this electronic world we live in.
That said, another thing that tickles our fancies is reading about someone else’s experiences that help us avoid the wrong things and be as successful as possible. These statistical guides in the form of blogs or other content stand out, as they help solve problems. Have a ‘how-to’ question? So do tons of other people.
That’s why you should create these experiments with your original data as the basis of it. They will not only get attention from multiple social networks, but they will also garner links upon links. In a lot of cases, it’s these data collection content pieces that garner much of the traffic coming to one’s site. You’ll be helping your industry in the marketing area with your research, and helping people, too; which will, in turn, send more site visitors your way.
Want to start this process for the first time? If you don’t have the time in your busy schedule, we suggest hiring a virtual assistant to collect data. You can use this to create surveys, send those out to as many relevant people as you can, use the results to create one of these data blogs, and be a thought leader in your industry!
Doing this is worth the effort since our world practically runs off Google. Every answer you could ever need or want lies on the other side of a quick search. And because people are always researching and collecting data and numbers, your data-riddled content will do quite well in related SERPs.
Solid How-Tos and Actionable Insights
In the same way that people love researching through search engines, people also love a good actionable insight and a handy ‘how-to.’ This day and age is all about convenience, and if we have a task at hand with some questions to go along with it, Google is where we go. With one push of an enter button, thousands of results appear, the first page of which is filled with the highest-ranking web pages and blogs on the topic.
How-to guides are some of the most common types of searches, so it’s a great idea to create content on your site that caters to users looking for tips, tricks, and questions answered. Again, convenience is what everyone is after, especially if it means that failure prevention for their specific project lies in the text of your content. But it can go past convenience and straight on to thoroughness, specifically for a project or professional-based plan. When you’re consistently showing up with answers for your industry’s biggest questions, you will quickly become people’s go-to for ‘How-To’.
Need some inspiration for good actionable insight content topics? Create a list of your processes. Then, add in your most frequently-asked questions. Explain and answer each of these with solid content posts and you’ll be well on your way! The things that you’ve discovered or streamlined in your industry are golden topics as well!
In order to help these pieces rank well, you can use sites like AnswerThePublic, which has a visual keyword research tool that shows all the different ways people are asking the questions that are related to each of your posts. Optimize for that, and there you go!
Your Industry’s Superstars
We all love a good celebrity—even in our professional spheres. These are the people that, like those opinionated pieces, either strike up a lot of love or a lot of the opposite from their online readers or viewers. They are the pioneers, the predictors, the trendsetters — and we all look to them since they’ve obviously been doing something right.
It is quite wise, in the case of a proven industry author, to follow in their steps and listen to their advice. They will have the best resources and data collection plus a long line of people that trust them. Walking in their footsteps could result in your success, too.
If you want your content to perform well to the point that you’re “one of them,” just start, be consistent, and don’t be afraid to show your opinions. People respond to that, and it’s the root of becoming a high-ranking thought leader.
Your Industry’s Social Issues
While this topic may not be as alive and thriving as the others in this list, it’s still important and could very well claim more of the spotlight in the months to come. Just as people like searching for and consuming content that’s opinionated, answers a question, and/or solves a problem, it will be wise for you to create content for your site that is social.
It plays even further into your status as a thought leader in your industry, and here you’re speaking to the heart of the matter. Some articles in the marketing industry, for example, include content addressing loss of passion in SEO positions, harassment, and depression.
It’s these topics that are uncomfortable and often hidden, so opening up or continuing the conversation about them can be beneficial in your industry. They are real and important, and talking about them openly with legitimate research to back you up is a great way to get in front of and build rapport with your audience.
This helps your content perform well in that, while people are searching for a simple ‘how-to’ or reading up on popular topics, the same people are also searching online for aide to physical and mental ailments. Searching for help with depression is one thing, but reading an article that is packed with useful information about how people in your same industry suffer with depression is another. That “me, too” feeling is powerful, and it fuels the trust that you’ve already been building with your audience and industry.
The tides may be turning for people to be more open to talk about about what they are going through in general, but it’s likely that they’ll be more comfortable asking their search bar first. Your presence on these topics says you care, plus they show that you’re knowledgeable in a multifaceted way that will keep you top of mind no matter what.
And There You Have It!
While there are tons a ways to frame your content, these five categories are the ones that made their mark in 2018. And, we feel highly confident that your traffic and overall impact will grow when you implement these strategies in 2019.
Have questions about content marketing? We can help! Uptick Marketing is home to brilliant content writers that know how to excel in any industry. Contact us today for more information.