When it comes to content strategy, we tend to focus more on the strategy and less on the content. And while the content strategy community doesn’t lack for advice about employing the right content in the right places, there aren’t many tools that can help model effective content based on keywords and content goals. Thanks to a handy tool called Inbound Writer, writing content that’s both targeted and strategic is now possible.
The Pursuit for Intelligent Content
Inbound Writer describes itself as a social writing application and as such makes your content come to life by aligning it with real-time intelligence. Starting a document is easy. First select three words that describe or name your topic. Inbound Writer, using a variety of natural language processing, semantic technologies and custom algorithms, searches the internet for the most relevant keywords.
Inbound Writer allows users to start writing or pasting text directly into their WYSIWYG editor. Before Inbound Writer can survey content, users need to decide how they want the writing application to measure their content. Content can be strategically aligned according to three options: Balanced Strategy, Optimize for Search Popularity and Minimize for Search Competition. Once selected, Inbound Writer offers tactical recommendations aimed at helping your content use the right words, in the right places based on real-time information. At the same time, every time content is updated accordingly, users can track the overall rankings of their content.
As impressive as this tool is, you can’t help but wonder how well it works once content is pushed out to its respective blog or website (currently, users need to cut and paste their optimized content, but a WordPress plugin in coming soon, which will make it much easier to optimize and publish content). The folks at Inbound Writer commissioned a study to examine just that.
The Impact of Optimized Content
Authored by a trio of online marketing and social media experts: Bryan Eisenberg, Jay Baer and Pelin Thorogood, The Impact of Real-Time Content Optimization: Does Access to Search and Social Intelligence Make You a Better Writer? examined the impact of using search and social data in the writing process to create more effective and engaging online content.
The report explored three different types of sites, with different content, different audiences and different traffic to see how integrating search and social intelligence into the content process improved their overall online presence, if at all. The sites included:
- eBeanstalk.com, an online toy retailer
- Convince & Convert, Jay Baer’s blog
- LinkOrbit, a blog network
As it turns out, optimizing your content with Inbound Writer, specifically, helped improve user engagement (time on site), findability (SERP) and customer conversions. The sites created content using Inbound Writer for a few weeks and saw dramatic results.
- eBeanstalk, for instance, boosted search engine traffic by 27 percent, and conversion to sale by 17 percent on product pages that were optimized with search data via through InboundWriter. Additionally, paid search impressions rose 45 percent without any additional increases in spend, which the study authors attributed to a higher Google Adwords Quality Score.
- For Convince & Convert, Jay Baer created new content and updated older content using Inbound Writer. As a result, traffic to five blog posts that were rewritten with InboundWriter increased 33 percent compared to the 30 days prior to the rewrite. In addition, six of seven new blog posts created garnered Top 10 Google rankings within two days of publication for targeted terms.
- LinkOrbit, increased time spent on site for two new website domains by 112 percent — compared to two control domains — by adding optimized content over a period of four weeks. The company also saw a 50 percent increase in page views per visit for the optimized domains.
It would be one thing if optimized content only served to lengthen the amount spent on site. There could be solid arguments challenging its effectiveness. However, it wasn’t just time on site, it was depth of visit (more pages per visit) and more conversions.
Inbound Writer, by itself, is a helpful tool that can aide editors and writers alike in writing optimized content for the web. After awhile, you might even be able to optimize draft content, so that only minor tweaks are needed. Inbound Writer is free for up to 8 documents/month (it resets at the start of each month). If you need more than 8 documents, it costs US$ 19.95/month.
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