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Confessions of a Content Marketing Hypocrite

October 29th, 2009 by
Embarrassed Monkey

The Content Monkey Owns Up. Image from Tim Davis, AllPosters.com

When I first put my own website together, I was transitioning between working for a full-time employer and working for myself. The time and money to put together a website that showcased my work had been hard to scrape up. Until that point, my portfolio was a collection of files on my computer that I would send out to people on request.

One weekend, I decided there was no time like the present so I hunkered down and put my website together.

By no means am I a programmer or a designer. I know just enough code and design to cause trouble. Being cheap and on a tight self-imposed deadline made me doubly dangerous behind a keyboard. But by the end of the weekend, I had managed to build a rickety digital home to house my work and promote my freelance writing services.

It was simple, cute, did the job of housing a portfolio but had absolutely no SEO thought behind it.

What’s my shameful confession? I never went back to do it right. (Which, if curious, you can see for yourself – I dare you to even find a single meta tag.)

So, each day as I chat with you on ideaLaunch about importance of optimization and content marketing, my own site sits to the side like the kid in class who had lice. It’s basically the example of what not to do. Like a lot of you, the bulk of my time is spent working on projects for other people – implementing the very thing I haven’t done for myself – rather than improving my own content marketing and web presence. While I’m busy now, a lot of my business is through acquaintances, recommendations of past clients and the odd job I see online that I apply for. I may not be so lucky in the future. Should there be fantastic potential clients looking for the kinds of services I offer, they would be hard pressed to find me in a Google search. Bad, content monkey, bad.

If you’re like me – a busy professional who knows content marketing and site optimization is important but just hasn’t found the time to do it right – what should you do?

  • Book the time for business planning. We totally get it – you’re busy. You’re running against client deadlines. You have other priorities. If you don’t square off the time to take care of your content marketing plan, it will keep getting pushed off. Your time is an investment in getting future business. You need future business.
  • Set some goals. Maybe you haven’t tackled your content marketing because you haven’t really thought about where it could lead you, client-wise. Search your competition and see what they’re working on. Would you like clients like that? Projects like they have? To attract business, they not only had to be great at their own services, but they had to market themselves well. Put some clients on your hit list and decide to make your website the type they would a) take seriously and b) find on their own in a Google search if they wanted the type of services you offer.
  • Consider hiring it out. If money is tight, see if you can arrange a barter agreement with another small business like yours to exchange services. Remember, it’s not just a nice web design you’re looking for – you need SEO tools and techniques too. If you have the budget, look into the services of a content marketing agency.
  • Use SEO-minded programs. If you have some ability (and you really don’t need that much) and prefer the DIY method, look into purchasing a template that has great SEO functionality built in. The Thesis theme for WordPress (ideal for blogs, but it’s functionality doesn’t stop there) is one of the top-rated platforms you can use – and it’s under $100 (includes free upgrades). It’s the motor behind the websites of Copyblogger, Chris Brogan and Danny Sullivan to name a few.

And yes, I’ll actually be following my own advice this time. Wish me luck!

One Response to “Confessions of a Content Marketing Hypocrite”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by ideaLaunch and ideaLaunch, Lp Jumper. Lp Jumper said: When I first put my own website together, I was transitioning between working for a full-time employer and work.. http://bit.ly/AqTAR […]

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