Do You Want A Content Marketing Writer On Your Team?
One of the things that thrills me most about the current web content development revolution (and it is, by all measures, a true revolution) is the fact that possessing basic English writing skills is now back in vogue. With barely literate Facebook and Twitter posts, mass-produced spam "articles" and other constant assaults to decent prose, it seemed that we were doomed to a future where “loose” permanently replaced “lose” in our lexicon and "text-speak" would dominate even corporate memos.
Thankfully, well-written and informative content developed by pros has now become KING on the Internet, due to improvements that make Google more effective in separating the wheat from the chaff. SEO “optimization” tricks such as link buying, junk portal pages and spam sites with zillions of useless links become less effective with each algorithm tweak while rich content deservedly rises to the top of the search results.
In other words, Google has figured out that we, the searchers, would like to see a lot less crap and more results that are actually useful.
What this means for anyone marketing on the web is that having a solid content marketing writer on your team who composes in excellent, native English while possessing an understanding of real SEO is crucial to getting traffic in this new, ever-changing search landscape.
The first volley – Google’s Chrome Personal Blocklist extension.
Google’s first attack against all the formulaic, thin and often absurd content produced by certain websites, engineered simply to end up high on the search results to get AdSense revenue, was to release a Chrome browser extension in February that allows a user to add specific domains to a personal blacklist.
These domains will forever disappear from the user’s search results, rendering all the SEO trickery used by slick “marketing experts” completely useless as far as this user is concerned because all their content simply disappears—kaput! Google’s official extension is presently only for Chrome, but a third-party solution exists called the Personal Search Blocklist that works for Firefox and Internet Explorer.
Google’s “Farmer” algorithm update—or “Uh…what the heck just happened to my rankings?”
I was a bit puzzled as to why the blacklist extensions went largely unheralded and failed to cause the massive panic among content farm operators that I expected. If I operated eHow or experts-exchange.com, two sites frequently grouped as being in the “web spam” category, I would be tremendously worried as I witnessed my business model potentially vanish overnight.
Perhaps these extensions haven’t generated as much buzz because there is something bigger to worry about. Google’s latest update, called Farmer, has demolished the search rankings of many top content farms, including Associated Content and Mahalo, as reported in this article about the losers in the new Farmer algorithim. Now, a user doesn’t even have to go through the trouble of installing a browser extension—Google is ‘blacklisting” thin content for the user by sending your pages to the depths of search engine rankings.
Combine this with the ability for a user to block whatever junk sites manage to get through the algorithm with a personal blocklist, and you have a sea of change in SEO and the required skills of each content marketing writer as we speak.
The future of the content marketing writer – write beneficial stuff people actually want to read.
Marketers can no longer just game the system and must produce good material instead of emphasizing keyword densities and other technical hobby-horsing. I personally am glad, because too often the real professionals get undercut by “writers” willing to write a keyword-stuffed piece of fluff for insultingly low rates.
The demand for these cut-rate key pressers is going to drop as businesses realize the copy produced gets them nowhere in search results, or even blacklisted by users—not exactly the best way to build a brand. Quality will rise: It has to if you want to market on the web from this point forward.
The solution is to develop compelling, informative or entertaining content that leaves viewers wanting more and coming back to your site. Hire people who produce meaningful copy that doesn’t insult your visitors' intelligence. Stop expecting quality copy for two pennies a word. Retain an excellent content marketing writer who does your brand justice by taking the time to do it right instead of churning out fluff.
It is going to be very interesting to see how this all plays out in the next few months. All I can say is…it’s a great time to be a good writer!