Content is what defines our websites. Without original content, be it on your blog, product descriptions and even your images, you’re not going to grow your business or expose your brand as well as you’d hope to. The reason for this is because original content heavily affects your Google ranking. As we all know, Google rankings are incredibly important because it’s the defining thing that lets us know how exposed we are on the internet. If simply typing your business’s name or the industry you deal in shows you on the first page, then you should be more than happy.
However, growing your online presence can be difficult if you aren’t well-versed with internet marketing and promotional strategies. It’s completely different to traditional marketing before the internet, which is why the same rules don’t apply. If you’re serious about growing your business on the internet with digital media, then you’ll be wise to read this guide on original content, the impact it creates on your business and how to ultimately use it to your advantage.
What exactly is original content?
Simply put, original content is (as the words imply) content that is original. If you’ve ever seen websites that look the same or content that you could’ve sworn was posted on another site, then that’s a good example of copied content, plagiarism or outright theft. These are the types of things that can get you blacklisted by Google because you’re essentially stealing someone else’s hard work and using it on your own website. This doesn’t go well in the real world, so why would it work on the internet? Unfortunately, it’s often difficult to locate the original source of content so it can be hard defining what is original and what isn’t, especially considering that ideas are usually the result of a combination of different sources of inspiration. For instance, the typical “top 10” list idea isn’t copyrighted and using that format isn’t seen as copying or plagiarism. However, it can be a fairly boring format to base your content on which is why more and more people are trying to develop unique formats to write articles, blog posts and informative content.
Therefore, original content can be confusing to define, but as long as you’re creating something without literally copying someone else’s work, then your content should be seen as original. Google’s search engine has various complicated algorithms that scour the internet to give your content a rating. If Google deems your content as worthy enough (i.e it improves the quality of the internet) then you’ll be given a good rating and Google will bump you up a couple of places. Of course, Google’s search algorithms aren’t as simplistic as that, but anything you do to further increase the quality of your content and website in general are going to be seen in a positive light.
Keyword overload and linking
Google’s ranking algorithms use a combination of keywords, linking and original content detection as a means to promote your website above others. In the past, many people tried to cheat the system by overloading their website with keywords, links and other things that used to be seen as a positive thing by Google. This is often known as black hat SEO, an aggressive way to get Google page ranks. It doesn’t last long, however. As Google’s ranking algorithms improve and it weeds out cheaters, those sites are blacklisted and they’ll never show up on Google’s search engine again. This means that black hat SEO methods are generally not seen in a good light and you should avoid it if you want a long-term and sustainable website that generates traffic and customers for your business.
ON the other hand, proper search engine optimization is known as white hat SEO, and it uses a combination of original content, keywords and links that are targeted towards humans instead of trying to abuse a robot’s algorithms. There are plenty of different strategies and techniques that focus on improving the experience of your users, and these are seen in a positive light by search engines and users as a whole. This means that you’re more likely to get good website ratings by users and Google will see this and bump your web page up a couple of ranks as a reward.
In short, original content will always trump black hat SEO methods that use aggressive linking and keywords to try and expose their website. If you’re serious about your business, then always use original content and white hat methods to build links and improve your website’s popularity.
Going viral with something new
New content can be sensational on the internet. Thanks to social media and how connected the world is through the use of the internet and platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, going viral on the internet is a real possibility and many companies attempt to artificially make something go viral by doing something sensational, different and original. Unfortunately, going viral is something that can’t be guaranteed, and you could be going viral for the wrong reason. An inappropriate ad is sensational, but that doesn’t mean your business will be seen in a good light. Your business could be turned into a laughing stock for trying to ride on the popularity of something that went viral, or it could be seen as a joke when you try to create something sensational that manages to anger certain audiences.
Creating new content with honest intentions can, however, become viral if you’re going about it the right way. For instance, a popular case study in viral advertisements is Dollar Shave Club. It’s a marketing video that released in 2012 with its infamous launch video. It features some censored swearing, some silly dancing and a lot of direct points. It didn’t dazzle you with confusing terms, it didn’t feature scantily clad women or half-naked men. It was a man in a warehouse talking about how great his razors were, how cheap they were and also resonated with the audience. It was something that was completely different at the time and the company has now turned into a billion-dollar brand name. They essentially took a boring topic and managed to advertise it with fresh ideas, spawning several spin-offs and similarly styled advertisements that play on the public’s preconceived notions about advertisements.
As you can see, creating something new doesn’t mean doing something sensational that has to anger people, and it doesn’t’ mean trying to ride off the success of something else that went viral. Being different can draw a lot of attention to you, but only if it’s done properly. In the case of Dollar Shave Club, their differences stood out and ultimately helped to grow their business to the point it’s at now. Without such a legendary and unique advertisement, they would be nowhere near as successful. This speaks volume about the power of original content and how it can be used correctly to promote your business and grow your online presence. Do something new—don’t just stick with tried and true methods that are making your company stale. The bigger the impact you make during your startup phase, the higher your chance of success.
How to create original content
Creating original content can be difficult if you aren’t equipped with an army of writers and designers at your company. This is when outsourcing can come in handy. For creative tasks, you could also hire freelancers to work for you. They’re often easier to work with especially when you’re a new startup, and the varying costs can make it possible to negotiate lower prices if you’re struggling for money. However, the other option is to simply create original content yourself. By gathering ideas from other successful case studies, you could piece together the puzzle that will create some unique content for your company.
If you plan to make original content on your own, then don’t neglect the importance of being consistent. If your company releases a funny advertisement but the next month you release something that completely contradicts it, then you might find yourself struggling to keep your customer base. Be consistent with your designs and content if you want to keep a grip on your audience. Deviating too much from successful ideas or trying too many different projects will only make people see your business as a confused one that doesn’t have an identity, and this could be detrimental to your company especially if you’re in the early startup days where establishing a place in the industry is the most difficult part.
Whether it’s recording an advertisement, writing up a blog post or article that will help grow your business or doing something unique that no one has done before, creating original content will have a massive impact on your business. If you have what it takes to design something unique, then use the help of freelancers and outsourcing companies to do something special and different. As long as you don’t step out of line and do something that purposely angers others, it will most likely gather some attention and help you grow your online presence.