Great content and a solid SEO strategy are some of the simplest and most effective ways for a building materials company to outperform its competition. This is especially true since content is a level playing field – even small to medium-sized companies can easily outperform larger businesses. That’s because creating content that sells is about outthinking the other guy, not outspending them.
The size of your budget makes a big difference when it comes to buying ads, exhibiting at trade shows, and staffing a large sales force. But in the world of online content, companies with fewer resources routinely outperform their big-budget competitors:
- Allura Fiber Cement Siding outperforms market leader James Hardie.
- Barricade Housewrap outperforms leaders Dupont Tyvek and Typar.
- Huyndai Quartz outperforms leaders Silestone, Cambria, and Caesarstone.
- Norway-based Kebony outperforms leader Trex.
- Cedur outperforms leader DaVinci in synthetic shakes.
- Sunrise Windows outperforms many better known and larger window brands.
Content and SEO are so important that I asked my go-to expert on the subject, Matt Lee of Lead Generation Experts, to write this post. He knows what he’s doing and the proof is in the results – he’s the one who helped those smaller companies I listed above rank higher than their competitors.
Matt’s insights are incredibly helpful for building materials companies of any size.
Writing content for your website is about more than just running and managing a blog. It’s about investing your time – and effort – into producing valuable articles aimed to increase visitors on your website.
If you’ve been consistently publishing content but aren’t seeing the resulting increase in traffic, first of all: don’t panic.
As more building product companies learn the vital importance of content marketing, successful blogs now require more than just random acts of marketing. They need content pieces targeted at two key focuses – attracting your desired audience and growing organic search traffic.
To accomplish this, there are only two types of content you need to worry about creating for your blog: SEO Content and Attraction Content.
What Is SEO Content?
SEO Content has one true purpose: to grow both traffic and leads through search engines. It requires careful keyword research, allowing you to write content specifically optimized to target your findings and score top-ranking positions when customers are searching for products you sell or solutions that your products solve.
Why Is SEO Important?
1. Largest Source of Traffic
Between 70-90% of manufacturers’ overall website traffic comes from search engines – even if it isn’t intentional.
Prospective buyers looking for a product or solution you offer end up on your website to eventually make that all-important purchase. What’s not to like?
2. The Only Free and Sustainable Traffic Source
SEO is the only website traffic source that is free and sustainable, leading to increased ROI over time. Well-optimized content can be high ranking for years, bringing in leads long into the future. Taking care and time out of your day now to write and publish SEO Content is bound to help your marketing efforts in the future.
3. Highest Converting Traffic Source
While alternatives like paid promotions on social media are all well and good (and a favorite for any advertiser), demographic categories don’t guarantee you are paying for the right audience.
Targeting male 25-35-year-olds doesn’t mean you’ll find any architects, construction site owners, or roof fixers. Focusing your efforts on SEO Content allows you not only to target the correct audience – but to bring in purposeful, active buyers.
Think about it this way: they’ve already loaded up Google to search specifically for something you sell or have information about – bringing much better results than expensive outbound marketing targeted to casual social media scrollers.
The Best Types of SEO Content
Incorporating SEO Content into your marketing efforts doesn’t have to be spammy or boring. Google’s Algorithm is now smart enough to recognize “keyword-stuffed” content pieces and devalue websites that do so – meaning you need to find the balance between bringing value to your audience and encouraging Google to like you.
There are certain types of SEO content that perform better than others and also have a low likelihood of penalization. Here are some of our favorites.
Infographics are a great tool for adding a ton of value to your blog posts without adding a load of difficult-to-digest numbers to your word count. If you’ve been looking for a way to communicate engaging data and facts with your audience – why not design infographics?
Pro Tip – You can acquire links to your website (which will help your SEO efforts) by promoting your infographics to industry publishers. These publishers love using these assets on their blogs and will credit you with a link to your website.
Some great examples include Hyundai’s webpage on “Everything You Need To Know About Quartz,” Tilton’s article on “Everything You Should Know About Coffered Ceilings,” and Metrie’s Infographic Resource for “Moulding Styles & Materials.”
How-To Guides are one of the most valuable SEO Content types out there.
Not only do audiences love the inside information they bring, but Google loves them too.
High retention rates on these types of blog posts mean one thing: you’re more likely to be recommended to the next searcher.
Establishing yourself as an industry authority by producing high-quality How-To Guides is great for organic leads as well as brand awareness.
List Posts and Expanded List Posts
You’ll have seen them all over the internet.
13 Reasons Why You Should Hate Kim Kardashian. 7 Craft Ideas for When You Are Bored. 139 Books To Read Before You Die.
List posts (and expanded list posts) are tried-and-tested SEO Content pieces that use psychology to encourage click-through rates and engagement. According to YardStick Agency, “They give a reader a sense of predictability. They know what to expect and give your audience a distinct and measurable insight into the value that they’re going to get from reading your blog post.”
It’s a trick used by marketers across the world and a really simple way for you to both:
- Come up with content ideas.
- Benefit from SEO content.
Here’s another little secret: odd numbers work better than even.
Take a look at Kebony’s expanded list post of “47 Wood Siding Ideas for Commercial and Residential Exteriors” or Hyundai’s “9 Stunning Black Quartz Countertop Design Ideas.” These are just two of millions of examples of successful blog pages using list posts for SEO.
If you’ve wanted to introduce a new and innovative tool to your website, here’s the good news: it’s also great for SEO.
CertainTeed has nailed the hammer on the head with their unique drywall calculator – perfect for answering “How much drywall do I need?” on Google.
Creating high-function, high-benefit tools for your customers will help make a lasting impression and increase visits to your site.
If you want to hone in on certain geographical areas, narrowing down your audience through localized content, such as Cedur’s post on “The Rising Trend of Shake Roofing & Cedar Shake Shingles for California Roofs” helps them rank for the keyword “California cedar shakes.” Google localized algorithm also shows this article to homeowners in California when they simply search for “cedar shakes.”
Allura used a similar strategy with their “Best Siding Options for Arizona Homeowners,” enabling them to rank for very specific localized house siding keywords in the Arizona market.
Product & Brand Comparisons
When customers reach the “Comparison and Information Gathering” stage of their buyer’s journey, it’s your job to deliver them to the sale point.
SEO Content that compares products or brands will help give you a c outcome and impressive conversion rates on your CTAs. One example of a building material company that did this well was Barricade, which wrote a post on “The Best Alternative to Tyvek House Wrap.”
The alternative? Their product.
Comparison posts are relevant for almost every industry, and you can still create this type of content while being respectful and polite and not distastefully insulting other competitors.
What is Attraction Content?
Using SEO Content to generate massive amounts of traffic and leads through search can be a game-changer to your digital marketing efforts. However, not all content needs to be keyword-driven since there are plenty of topics that your audience would love to read that they aren’t actively searching for.
Attraction Content marketing is all about giving your audience a reason to come to your website – and then stay. This is the type of content that allows you to connect and engage with your audience, retain their attention and provide goodwill. It’s about making them pause and think, “Wow. This company knows what they’re talking about.” or “Wow, this content is really useful. I’m going to bookmark it, so I can refer back to it frequently.”
Why is Attraction Content Important?
Attraction Content stems from understanding your market. Everything you write should be directly tailored to your audience’s needs. You need to answer their questions and keep their best interests in mind. No time-wasting. Here are some facts:
- Attraction Content builds trust between you as a provider and your audience.
- Attraction Content establishes your authority in an industry.
- Attraction Content informs your customers, answers their questions, and creates that final sale.
- Attraction Content typically shares well through social media and email newsletters much better than SEO content.
The lines between SEO Content and Attraction Content can be both thick and thin, with some of the best SEO tactics (such as List Posts) also working to create value and provide remarkable, high-quality content to your target audience.
However, there are some key differences.
A Powerful, Persuasive Voice
When you are writing SEO Content, it’s easy to lose your flow.
High focus on keywords can transform the voice of the piece as you desperately need to get the right terms and phrases into paragraphs that don’t really fit together. Unprofessionally written SEO Content often heads in a few different directions and can be confusing for an audience if not combined with the stylistic choices of Attraction Content.
Writing Attraction Content allows the creative side of your brain to take control, rather than the practical side. This means you can often write powerfully and persuasively compared to when you are concentrating on a hundred other things and cramming your piece full of infographics and data. High-quality writing allows you to turn readers into fans, and fans into customers.
Written For Value, Not Purpose
Attraction Content is written for people, not Google. While SEO Content is specifically designed to cater to you and your needs by bringing in traffic, finding the balance with Attraction Content is key to providing value to your audience.
Instead of feeling forced to write about a piece on a bizarre niche entirely specific to a certain group of high-intent customers, you can write for value – not purpose. Attraction Content allows you to share insider knowledge and secrets that will build a trusting relationship between you and your customer.
As we’ve mentioned before, SEO Content is very limited for publication opportunities. While you might make a whole web page dedicated to “Quartz Tabletops in Texas,” – it’s unlikely you can transfer this material into further marketing pieces. However, Attraction Content is great for multi-purpose publications:
- Quotes on your social media.
- A downloadable PDF for your mailing list.
- SlideShares for your fellow business owners.
Typically, Attraction Content pieces are for wider-reaching audiences, allowing you to increase the relevance and share your work in more places. Investing time into Attraction Content is an easy-to-make decision for every manufacturer running their own marketing. The ability to share it worldwide only increases the ROI possibilities for your efforts.
Quality and User Experience
Content marketing requires consistency. Bringing quality to your blog through Attraction Content allows you to create “fresh, unique, and creative content that gets rapidly indexed and ranks higher than low-value, repetitive content.”
Effective Attraction Content Examples
The best types of Attraction Content know how to persuade an audience to click-through to their website.
Let’s break down a few examples.
1. A Definitive Guide to Digital Marketing for Window Professionals
Take a look at this example from Sunrise.
Can you spot anything in the title itself that would help their target audience choose their link on Google’s SERP over another?
Don’t worry, it’s not a trick question.
The answer is overwhelmingly easy and obvious, and it’s just two words: “Window Professionals.”
Sunrise made the conscious decision to publicly announce their target audience for this guide and are likely to encourage Window Professionals to choose their informative blog over a general Digital Marketing Guide.
They’ve also used a persuasive power word: Definitive.
Through a carefully designed title, Sunrise has managed to establish authority and will be seeing thousands of hits as a result. Similarly, they’ve chosen a topic plenty of users will be searching for – Digital Marketing. Millions of business owners will be looking for digital marketing help each day, so Sunrise has created a brilliant title for their Attraction Content.
2. 13 Social Media Posts Ideas for Home Builders
We’ve mentioned Allura a few times throughout this article, and for good reason. They’re well known in the building material industry for fiber cement products and for pulling together great content. This particular example combines our SEO Content tips with Attraction Content purpose for a valuable, insightful article that Home Builders will love.
3. The Top 75 Online Tools for Architects
Yes, another list – but before getting confused, take a look at that word just before the number: “top.” Kirei’s article is not only targeted but also persuades potential readers that they are about to provide an incredible amount of information, all compiled into one article for their convenience.
Using the word “top” suggests that they have researched hundreds of options in order to choose their favorites and is a great power word to convince architects to click onto their article.
SEO Content + Attraction Content = Epic Content
Improving your Attraction Content comes down to this: combining it with SEO Content and vice versa.
After all, why shouldn’t you be allowed to have the best of both worlds, benefiting from high-ranking SERP results whilst also providing tremendous value to your target audience?
When you tie both SEO Content and Attraction content together, you come out with Epic Content. You can learn more about how to create Epic Content by clicking here. Many manufacturers make the mistake of publishing Attraction Content without SEO optimizations. That can be a mistake. It’s always best to see if you can find a keyword target for your attraction content, even if you originally had no particular SEO strategy in mind.
To learn more about finding keywords for your attraction content, click here.
To learn more about optimizing your attraction content for SEO, click here.
Now that you’ve learned plenty of new tips and information, it should be easy to write dual-purpose articles that give you the chance to reach your audience, to then attract and convert them.
However, if you aren’t confident enough yet to walk the delicate balance, it’s always okay to stagger your content creation and publish SEO Content and Attraction Content separately.
Creating both types of content ensures that your work will be seen by users on all platforms – through organic search on Google, exciting quotes on social media, and valuable insight in your monthly newsletters.
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