Learn how content marketing can give your startup star power.
All kinds of businesses, from startup- to enterprise-level, are increasing their marketing budgets to create content that converts. If you’re eager to invest in content marketing and get your brand’s name in blue lights (SERP blue, that is) but wonder if your startup is ready, this is the guide for you.
Siege has developed startup strategies that increase organic traffic value by $796,000+ in a year, with 85% of keyword-driven posts ranking on page 1. We’ve even helped a personal loan startup increase its backlink profile by 213% in 12 months.
That’s no easy feat in the finance space.
Content marketing for startups can build buzz around your brand, but your timing, project priorities, and execution have huge implications for your success.
Below are our tips for stellar SEO and content marketing strategies to implement from the start.
Choosing the right stage to invest in your startup’s content marketing is critical to seeing its full traffic potential. Startups in the seed round are still searching for their product-market fit, and limited funds make content marketing a risky investment.
Smaller brands with less authority also take longer to generate SEO results. Early startups may not see growth for 12-18 months, while Series A startups have secure funding and a brand identity that can return growth in six to eight months.
A content marketing strategy begins with your business goals and product. Content produced without a concrete direction can dilute your brand identity within 12 months or drive less-than-relevant traffic that doesn’t convert.
On the other hand, Series A startups naturally generate more buzz with PR mentions that content marketing can capitalize on within the content strategy. The increased equity can support high-quality content marketing that scales with business, so you don’t have to go back to the drawing board to perfect your strategy.
2. Build a Foundation for Growth
Your content strategy begins before you put metaphorical pen to paper, and you can lay the foundation for a strategy that scales in the seed phase. Two key elements to building a foundation for growth include a well-built website and a strong brand identity with buzz.
A positive user experience is major in SEO optimization, and it starts with your website’s content management system (CMS). A good, user-friendly CMS prioritizes ease-of-use and the end user’s experience to benefit your content marketing.
Our tried-and-true client favorites include:
Once your site is live, consider how you can generate links and recognition from the press. A healthy backlink profile from reputable and relevant sites builds your site authority and supports your content strategy down the line.
Competitor coverage can be a goldmine when identifying prospects to contact. Reach out to startup and industry publications talking about the competition to promote your startup and initiatives.
3. Set Objectives, Performance Metrics
An effective content marketing strategy offers a range of business benefits, including brand awareness, user conversions, and trust through thought leadership.
If you’re looking to increase your sales, optimizing your landing pages for SEO is a great place to start. If you want to build your reputation, thought leadership and case studies can prove you walk the walk.
First, identify and prioritize your campaign goals before creating a content strategy. Your startup goals may include:
- Generating relevant organic traffic
- Growing your backlink profile
- Driving visitor conversions
To measure your success, you’ll also need to identify key performance indicators (KPIs). Tracking monthly KPIs allows you to see what strategies work and what you can refine while documenting your growth.
Depending on your primary objectives, your KPIs may look like:
- Improve monthly organic traffic by 15% in six months
- Generate 15 links per month through manual outreach
- Publish four SEO posts each month
Remember that content marketing is a long-term strategy, and you may not see complete results for six months or more. Your other KPIs and metrics can help indicate positive and negative signals to evaluate your strategy earlier.
4. Strategize With a KOB Analysis
A keyword opposition to benefit (KOB) analysis pulls relevant keywords and metrics, including search volume, keyword difficulty, and estimated traffic value. These will help identify the most high-value keyword opportunities for your site.
This analysis allows you to target low-difficulty keywords to quickly generate rankings and traffic value. These quick wins grow your brand and authority when you’re starting out and can’t quite outrank large competitors.
As a startup, you should adjust the estimated traffic value when considering that your business vertical may not directly align with search intent. Meeting users’ needs is key to ranking, and your traffic value won’t be as high if you can’t secure the number 1 spot on the SERP.
A KOB analysis is a valuable tool to help you rank, and we want to keep it simple. Feel free to download our KOB analysis spreadsheet below and customize it for your startup.
We believe every content strategy should begin with a KOB analysis. All it takes is 20-40 hours to kickstart your strategy. Get started with our video guide below.
5. Create High-Quality, Unique Content
Google is always looking for high-quality content that provides unique insights for users. Combine your expert perspective with diverse content to create a tool to outrank competitors and prove your value to readers looking for more information.
High-quality content should be relevant to your product or service and meet your audience’s needs. If you sell homeowner’s insurance, then consider that a “home buying checklist” post doesn’t serve a majority of your audience who already own homes.
Only explore tangential topics once you’ve exhausted industry topics you have the highest authority on.
Google and users also look for proof that they can trust you. Factors like your site design, content quality and topicsz and author bios can indicate your experience, expertise, authority, and trust — popularly known as EEAT.
EEAT begins with the foundation you built in step 3, but improving your authority should always be a priority. The strategies below can help you build EEAT to create stronger content that ranks:
- Diverse content formats including guides, data studies, and SEO posts
- Authoritative content relevant to your expertise and vertical
- Reputable authors with experience listed
- Good site experience with user-first content
- Easy-to-digest content design
6. Diversify Your Content Types
SEO posts are great for driving organic traffic, while promotable content can generate backlinks. Development elements in the right application can improve user experience and help your content outshine the competition.
Each content format has its strengths, and content diversity supports a well-rounded campaign and its objectives. You can learn more about the types of content marketing on our blog, and check out some category examples below.
SEO content is optimized to rank for specific keywords and answer user questions. Once ranking, SEO posts drive organic search, traffic value, and ideally convert users.
The example below is from a startup mortgage lender that improved its sitewide monthly organic traffic by 458% in 12 months through keyword-driven content marketing. This guide to affordable new construction homes is currently ranking #1 and generates $5,200 in monthly organic traffic value.
So, what makes this post successful?
The answer users are looking for is right there in the first sentence, which is great for user experience and it’s an easy highlight for Google to pull. Optimizing the title and intro with the keyword and quick answer also helps search engines understand the post’s content and index it appropriately.
Of course, there are several factors that impact affordability, which we present in the second half of the sentence to show readers what else you cover in the post and hopefully answer their next questions.
SEO posts are a great starting point for content marketing when you know how to write content that ranks.
Infographics, resource guides, and data studies are designed to share and make great promotable content. Manual promotion can generate links in the short term to help content rank and develop your backlink profile.
The key to great promotable content is to provide value to readers through interesting insights or actionable steps with clear benefits. Our guide to showing your pet some love on a budget dives into healthy pet routines with beautiful illustrations and light but informative copy.
This infographic generated 17 links through manual promotion by providing budget-friendly ideas for pet parents — a highly receptive outreach market. This post also included a survey element that appealed to mid-tier news outlets and generated coverage from pet industry publications.
Ideally, your posts are a hybrid of promotable and SEO content. Identifying relevant, search-driven keywords to build your shareable around provides additional context for the reader, and encourages link-building through manual or organic measures.
Passive Link Opportunities
Passive link content’s goal is to rank and collect a steady stream of organic links over an extended period of time for the lowest lifetime cost per link. How-to guides, statistics posts, and interactives can be natural link builders that can become passive link opportunities when paired with a strong keyword.
Our grocery budget calculator below earned 364 linking root domains (LRDs) through organic mentions, and it’s currently ranking #2 on Google.
Several of these links are from high domain rating (DR) news outlets reporting on food security and affordability relative to a U.S. bill generating buzz. Our calculator and budget recommendations were the perfect references to discuss American families’ grocery bills.
7. Promote Your Content
Content promotion ensures your hard work is seen and celebrated while expanding your brand’s visibility and authority. Guest posts are a good way to build links to your content, which indicates your post’s value for Google and benefit rankings.
Guest spots on blogs, podcasts and web streams can also help position you and your brand as an authority in the space. This reaffirms your expertise and value to boost your ongoing content strategy.
Even promoting your content through internal channels can improve visibility and performance. Internal links among your own blog content provide valuable next steps for users while helping Googlebots navigate your site.
Repromoting your content through other formats such as social media posts, YouTube videos, or podcasts increases accessibility for users and greets your audience on their favorite platforms. It’s also a budget-friendly way to repurpose content without overspending in the early startup stages.
8. Monitor Your Content Marketing Strategy
The strongest content marketing strategies are flexible and regularly reevaluated. A quarterly review is a good opportunity to consider your growth and objectives. While your content may not rank in four months, you should be able to identify positive indicators in rankings or organic traffic.
As you review past projects, consider the relevancy of your content for your readers and brand. You may find the top-performing posts directly answer the reader’s queries, while high-converting posts are super relevant to your vertical.
Tracking your KPIs and other performance metrics monthly is a helpful way to identify seasonal trends in your industry and content. You can also spot lost rankings or traffic early to adjust your content strategy as necessary.
Be sure to keep an eye on the age of your content, which is a key ranking factor for Google. Revamping existing content is an easy way to keep your rank, and we’ve found that it can increase organic traffic by as much as 52%.
Invest In Growth
Content marketing for startups can provide significant benefits when you carefully build a foundation for your content strategy. Clear performance objectives, quality content, and expertise can propel your startup to stardom.
Wondering where to find strategy superstars? Connect with us to chat about your goals and check out our content marketing services.