Content is king.
Writers and marketers alike heed this wise mantra, knowing that cheap gimmicks and clickbait, while sometimes semi-effective in the moment, do not make for success in the long term.
Flashy headlines like, “She sat down to dinner, and you’ll never guess what happened next!” and “This video of a puppy will restore your faith in humanity!” may entice a click, but they lack the strong, engaging content that will keep readers coming back for more.
Recently, The Poynter Institute discussed this very issue. In a quick interview, Nilay Patel, editor-in-chief of The Verge, remarked, “Most clickbait is disappointing because it’s a promise of value that isn’t met—the payoff isn’t nearly as good as what the reader imagines.”
Failing to deliver on hyped content can hurt a brand on several levels.
Bad Content Is a Reflection on the Brand Itself.
Bold headlines that only lead to meager-at-best articles again and again will lead people to believe that your brand doesn’t have the expertise it claims. It doesn’t take long for this perception to tarnish a brand’s overall reputation.
Melinda Staros, head of research at Sharethrough, reported to Native, “A well-written headline can color your perception of the content … but when there is no connection between the two, the disappointment is multiplied and the association made with your brand can be extremely negative. That’s because neuroscience demonstrates native ad messages can impact brand associations.”
If your brand can’t effectively and engagingly present your area of expertise in a way that is helpful, why should potential customers believe that their experience will be any better with your products or services?
2. Bounce Rate
Poor Content Hurts Your Website’s Bounce Rate. But What Is Bounce Rate?
Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors to a particular website that navigate away from the site after viewing only one page. It’s the website equivalent of someone walking in the front door of a business, looking around for a few minutes and then turning right around and walking out again.
While even the best site can’t win every visitor over for a full-on browsing session, strong content can be a lure to keep people interested. Engaged visitors will continuing clicking and reading instead of instantly “bouncing” to somewhere more interesting on the Internet.
Reducing your bounce rate helps to boost your conversion rate. By posting quality content on a blog and highlighting that content from other parts of your site, you are giving people reasons to stick around longer; you are giving them a chance to get to know your brand and gaining an opportunity to prove that your brand is trustworthy.
People Need to Find Your Site, and Then Come Back Often.
It’s important for people not only to visit your site, but also to come back often and hang around for a while. The more you demonstrate value to potential visitors, the better your SEO will be. If you are not familiar with SEO (search engine optimization), it’s the strategy of tailoring your site in ways that make it easy for Google and other search engines to see that your content is relevant and to surface it for interested search users.
When you go to Google and search for, say, “best Italian restaurant in New York City,” you’re more likely to trust the first few sites listed under the search bar. The further away from the first page you have to go, the less likely you are to see the result as relevant to what you were looking for. It’s important to be ranked as high as possible for search terms where you can deliver value to users.
What tells Google that your brand’s site is relevant, important and valuable? There are many signals Google uses to try to gauge your relevance, but in the end, they’re looking for your site to be recognized as authoritative and authentically valuable in meeting the needs of searchers.
Freshness can be one strong indicator of quality. People sharing your content on social media and other websites also give Google a hint that there’s something there people want to see. Blogs give you the path to both freshness and shareability, improving your chances that Google will use your content in search results.
Clickbait Content Can Throw Visitors and Potential Customers Your Way in the Short Term, but It’s Often Destructive to the Longevity of a Brand’s Online Presence.
Relevance says it well: “Yes, you may be getting traffic, but what are those visitors going to think of your brand or site afterwards? Are they really going to come back to you for MORE cat gifs, and how does that even help build awareness for your latest product?”
What’s the Takeaway? Provide Quality Content.
Putting great information, images and resources on your site’s blog will draw people to your site. A 2013 study from Chartbeat found that visitors who came to a site and engaged with an article for several minutes returned two times as often as those who bounced. If they like the first thing they read, they’ll click over to read more. They’ll get a feel for your brand, which we’ve already established helps convert people to be potential customers. Blogging is how you create loyal brand fans.
Are you ready to take the plunge and make quality content creation part of your marketing strategy? Learn more about how Dish Works can help.