What's the point in creating something that no one reads?
Answer: there isn't one.
This article is intriguing for its breakdown of how to create a compelling newsletter, but even more so for this little bit about how you might not need one at all:
"If your industry isn’t really interested in email newsletters, or if your goals don’t line up with what a newsletter could accomplish, your time might be better spent creating something else like a lead nurturing email workflow or content for your blog."
Want to paint pictures with words? Include interesting details.
After you read it, go paint a panda-driven newsletter. (Am I the only one laughing at this bad joke? See Marketing.)
“It transitions the responsibilities of SEO professionals from a reactive clean-up after the post goes live into proactive work on advanced SEO strategies (since the editorial teams have got your back on the foundational elements).”
“It puts more power into the hands of the journalist to help market their content to new audiences who wouldn’t otherwise discover it.”
Roy Peter Clark’s writing about writing really has my wheels spinning. Aside from formal training, I think many of the best writers have a bit of a 6th sense about what they want to do and how to do it. It’s a blessing, then, when someone comes along who can explain how to make those decisions in your writing.
“When I think about the experience of reading good writing, I return again and again to the parable of the gold coins, introduced to me by my friend and mentor Don Fry. Imagine you are walking down a forest path and come upon a gold coin. You pick it up and put it in your pocket. You walk a mile and find another. Most walkers would keep walking until they are sure the gold coins have run out.
So it is with reading a story. It may open with a gold coin, but can you be assured of more? Or have you experienced a kind of bait and switch, where a sparkling anecdote drew you in only to lead you down a path of boredom, with no more rewards in sight?”
He provides some great insights into overcoming your curse of knowledge and creating a path of gold coins for your readers. The detectorist in me loves this analogy.
My obsession with Tiny Little Business and Andre Chaperon continues. This piece is actually a newsletter he and business partner Shawn Twing sent out last week and it might be the content creation recipe you’ve been missing in your life.
I don’t want to spoil the read, so I’ll tease you with an outline of their approach:
- The Dossier (all the ideas, ever)
- The Manifesto (1-2k words)
- The Frame (300-500 words)
- The Hook (1-2 sentences)
Let me know if you give their approach a try.
Here’s a little writing secret:
It’s so much easier to write almost anything if you interview someone.
As a former freelancer, at some point I overcame my dread of requesting interviews and started looking forward to the process. Here’s the deal: once you’ve identified someone as having an opinion worth capturing on the topic you are writing about, you get to have a conversation with them and use that to fuel your content.
But it’s not just as simple as requesting their time and asking a few questions. You need to be prepared to have an actual conversation, which means you need to do your research before that chat takes place.
In this article, Whitney Rhodes offers up 4 interview strategies you can use in your next article.
Note: I found this via Driven.
During the Google Search Central SEO hangout recorded on February 19, Google’s John Mueller answered questions about SEO for news websites, “particularly as it relates to publishing shorter articles.”
The Panda algorithm update has some publishers worried about thin content and questioning whether they should noindex tag short pieces. Mueller said length isn’t what classifies something as thin content, and indicated that uniqueness is more important. He also gave an inconclusive suggestion that it might be smart to block short articles from Google News.
The article includes a video recording of the conversations. As with everything SEO, the general consensus is still to create unique, quality content if you want to rank.
In this article, Jeff Ferguson dives into a concept some will find hard to believe:
“Basically, ‘Google ranks webpages, not websites,’ means that Google treats every webpage that its robots crawl and index like its own little self-contained world of content, code, and links.
...Therefore, as far as ranking and indexing go, that webpage could live on any domain it likes, and Google would treat it the same way.
Why do some SEO pros hate this seemingly innocent phrase?
Because its existence breaks many concepts they hold dear – and because their business depends on people believing that these concepts of theirs exist.”
So... anyone frustrated with my stance that you should publish your newsletter to your domain, let’s just agree that it’s not hurting (and COULD BE HELPING) your SEO. Jeff gets into why subdomains vs subfolders isn’t really an issue, either.
Via our friends at theCLIKK
Related: Read more refreshing SEO news in Google Says Digital Public Relations Is Not Spammy Link Building via The Weekly PR.
Recent changes to Google’s search algorithm aren’t something to fret over, according to Maria Minsker, especially if your content caters to readers’ needs.
EAT stands for expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. Click through for some reassurance that if you’re following these principles in your SEO writing, you’re not likely to experience a drop in organic traffic.