Content Marketing and SEO go hand in hand for any platform. One simply cannot exist without the other even if the website’s authority has surpassed all expectations.
In fact, when SEO agencies start looking for new clients, they always make sure to capture a specific niche, as they know they will have to do a lot of blogging in the process. What this means is that the specialists in the SEO agency will have to be experts in the topic they will be writing about, so that the content marketing strategy is not jeopardized by wrong facts and guides.
However, there are not enough backlinks or keyword density that an SEO agency can undertake that will rank a newly established website on Google’s search pages. This is why, even though most SEO agencies don’t necessarily know what they are writing about half of the time, they still include an SEO strategy that ranks them amazingly well compared to competing websites.
That strategy is including long-tail keywords in the article and trying to rank on them specifically.
What is a long-tail keyword?
A longtail keyword is basically like the original keyword with additional words or characters in it. For example, let’s imagine that you are trying to rank a website that sells WordPress themes. Your target keyword would be WordPress themes as that’s what has the most volume of searches worldwide.
However, being a new website, it will be nearly impossible for you to rank even in the first 6 pages of Google. This is where the longtail keyword comes in as it has lower search volume as well as lower competition.
A longtail keyword variation of “Wordpress themes” would be “Wordpress themes free”, or “Wordpress themes for blog”.
These would not be as seriously targeted by already high authority websites, which is why a newer website would have the ability to rank on them. This would give them the much needed initial traffic to the platform to kickstart the ranking process.
Once they acquire enough traffic, thus giving themselves authority, they can start targeting the main keyword.
Why you should target these keywords in a content marketing strategy
Usually, content marketing strategies have the motto of “less is more”. This means that the agency that you hire will focus on doing a few articles as possible, but focus on the quality of those articles on a much more focused level.
However, fewer articles mean fewer target keywords, thus preventing the website to rank on these longtail keyword versions effectively and only focusing on the higher traffic ones. But the issues are as mentioned. The higher traffic keywords have a lot more competition for them.
This is one of the reasons why, when hiring a content marketing firm, you need to make sure that you are getting at least a couple dozen articles for them, which are optimized for the long-tail keywords you find from your competitors and otherwise.
Long-Tail keywords help with combating negative SEO
One of the biggest issues that people may find with their blogs or websites is that competitors often try to mess around with their target keywords. For example, I’ve seen multiple times a competing website link to my own blog from pretty sketchy domains. If you didn’t know, Google is very vigilant about where your links are coming from. If they’re from an untrustworthy domain, it’s likely that your rank is going to suffer.
One example I can bring is the Bitcoin Evolution scam which was pretty relevant in 2017 and 2018. I bring this one specifically because it’s what I’ve looked into the most. The issue was that the company was under investigation whether they were a legitimate service. When this first became known, dozens of crypto websites started to include “scam” in their keywords to target this phenomenon as there was an increased interest in the topic.
The way the company fought this was that they targeted these keywords themselves. They filled up their best-performing pages with keywords including “scam” or otherwise to help people reach their own page rather than a page of a blog trying to manipulate the situation. Needless to say, the company is still kicking to this day.
That’s why long-tail keywords are quite helpful with negative SEO, they’re much more versatile. Things like is it a scam? Scam, fraud, could it be a fraud? Were one of the ways that the company managed to snag the top positions from competitors and stay relatively untouched. This can be even further customized based on what keywords you target specifically.
Long Tail keywords are less natural
One drawback that long-tail keywords have is that they are almost never natural. What this means is that their composition is often grammatically incorrect. You may have noticed that when I first mentioned the longtail keyword for the WordPress website.
You see, including the keyword “Wordpress website free” is almost impossible in a natural way. However, that unnatural state of the keyword is what makes it so desirable by webmasters.
Therefore, if you’re a content marketing agency, all you have to do is train your staff in adding these long-tail keywords in the most natural way possible.
Almost 90% of the whole content marketing industry simply doesn’t care about the syntax issues and just goes with the flow. What this means is they simply insert the long-tail keywords inside the article and hope that it ranks.
The sad part is that most of the times those blatant insertions do indeed work, but the quality of the article is decreased. This defeats the whole purpose of content marketing which is designed to drive as many conversions as possible.
Even if a potential customer finds your website through a Google search, it is extremely unlikely for them to sign up with you if your articles and texts are grammatically incorrect.
The bottom line is that you should always focus on long-tail keywords if you are just starting out with your website. What this means is that the domain you purchased has no authority and no backlinks going to it. Google simply does not consider you as credible quite yet, which is why you need to build your way up to the top.
In order to do this, you will have to tackle long-tail keywords that don’t have as many competitors around the web. It will help you get that initial surge of viewers as you start out and therefore encourage Google to increase your domain authority.
Once the domain authority reaches a certain level. Around 40-45 according to Moz, then you are good to go with targeting main keywords.
When it comes to the content marketing strategy, I highly suggest that you pump out as many articles as possible to target as many keywords as possible.
Remember, the initial stage is to gain viewership and not sales. The sales will start piling up once you have reached the domain authority mentioned above.