Content Marketing Agency Manchester
We’re said to see 3000+ advertising messages a day, so how do you ensure yours are a sight to behold? Snappy headlines and pretty pictures may have worked in the 1950’s, but we believe marketing is pointless without well-crafted content that resonates with your audience. With so many formats and avenues from which to choose, we create campaigns that are searched, sought-after and engaged with by those who always come back for more.
The Value Of Our Content Marketing Services
Content is only effective if it attracts an audience and drives them to continually engage with your company, because otherwise, it’s just noise. You can put out as many blog posts, articles and social media posts as you like, but if they’re not resulting in customers, subscribers or brand loyalists who make you their go-to company, then clearly, there’s something wrong. Great content has the power to boost search engine rankings, drive traffic to your website and create ever-lasting relationships, so you know the investment is worth it.
But great content has the power to do so much more. From ensuring that your website represents every single one of your products and services in the best possible light, to blog posts and articles that not only highlight their benefits but engage the audience through carefully-crafted words, infographics and videos, it’s some pretty powerful stuff. Content can turn potential customers into loyal clients that can’t help but spread the word about your offering, and the benefits that you can give everyone in sight.
At its core, great content takes a creative idea or piece of data and moulds it into something exceptional, combining visual appeal and beneficial information with the needs of the audience. It’s like a good book that you just can’t put down. It’s like that song that you could never tire of. It’s that content that your audience will always associate with your brand, building up your reputation as a company that is worth investing time and energy in, and some money in too. It’s the content that will earn you links, increasing your reach and recognition as your audience joins you from industry-specific websites. This adds to your credibility and trustworthiness, impacting your brand in only positive ways.
At Embryo, we’ve seen the command our content marketing strategies have had, and know that with the right mix of insight, creativity, technology and platforms we can make you an authority in your industry. Whether we redefine your tone of voice (T.O.V.), send out surveys or create blogs, videos, infographics, eBooks and guest posts that are brimming with easily digestible facts and figures, we’ll ensure your expertise and capabilities cut through the unnecessary noise of your competitors. This will undoubtedly improve brand retention, drive up-sell by illustrating your benefits and build greater trust with your audience.
What Do Our Content Marketing Strategies Involve?
We’ll be your content consultants, handling everything from customer, competitor and market analysis to creating content schedules that ensure your output is ahead of the game. We’ll start by getting to know your brand, vision and T.O.V., or help you develop one that will lead strategy, give your content clout and make you accessible to your audience. We’ll then run a full digital marketing content audit to identify areas for improvement on your website and new avenues for your campaigns. This will integrate audience demographic details, buyer preferences, content formats and channels, helping us to select the right ones to engage your audience with.
Keyword research will guide and optimise the content we write, and we’ll integrate PPC, social media and inbound marketing tactics that will allow your content to be found by those who’ll respect and appreciate it the most. We’re constantly on the look-out for trends, industry updates and the next big thing, so your content will make you a market expert and keep you ahead of the game. Along with planned out promotions of events, webinars and company developments, your brand won’t just stand out, it’ll make a difference.
Content for Audiences, or Content for Algorithms?
Both, is always the answer to that question! Which leads us to another question we get pretty often – how do I write for SEO without sounding like a bumbling, keyword-stuffed fool who doesn’t know what they’re talking about? It’s a hard line to tread, and one that can be really difficult, but fortunately, our team of content marketers have it down to a fine art! We’re continually adapting and tweaking our content strategies to fit with best SEO practice, without ever losing the imaginative, personalised style and tone of voice that our clients love us for. We’re never writing content for content’s sake – there’s always a purpose, aim and sensibility behind our content strategies, which is what makes them so effective when it comes to the results you see month on month.
At Embryo, the SEO and content teams work together incredibly closely, as we understand the power the written word has when it comes to Google and other search engine’s algorithms. Your SEO consultant will always be liaising with our content writers to effectively apply this invaluable resource where it needs to be, whether that’s site pages, blog posts, white papers, infographics, outreach projects or a whole host of other mediums.
Longform Content, Done Right.
In the past, stuffing your content with keywords was all it took to be featured on page one of the SERP, but Google’s tactics have evolved, and the tactics of content writers the world over need to have too. The name of the game nowadays is longform content. As the world of online content becomes increasingly competitive, you need something that really makes you stand out in the eyes of Google’s algorithms. That something is longform content. Research shows us that in an average Google search, the top 10 pages will all have over 2000 words of written content on them, which has to count for something when you’re looking for the best way to break into the top of the SERP. But of course, with all things content, there’s more to it than just writing a lot – you can’t just have a massive pile of redundant content sitting on the website, it has to be relevant, it has to be informative, it has to be well written and it has to have value for the end-user. Not quite as easy as you thought, eh?
Fortunately, our content team are specialists in creating longform content that gives you more than just words to make Google happy. We’ll dive right into your business and sector, to find the things that your users need to know, and explain complex terminology in simple, easy-to-understand terms. Our team will garner a comprehensive understanding of your products and services, and use this knowledge to create longform content that is highly relevant and accurate, while also ensuring we adhere closely to your brand identity and your own Tone Of Voice.
Strategy & Reporting
Then we report. We analyse KPIs to ensure you’re gaining fans, releasing shareable content and converting all of this into valuable leads. Your content won’t just be seen, it’ll be recognised.
We’ll use Google Analytics to measure conversions, discover demographic details and track the user journey to find out how to improve it. Page visits, comments, shares and CTR are just a few of our engagement markers, and we’ll continuously check your content is ranking for those all-important keywords. This will influence future strategy, and with unending research into inspiring topics, we’ll ensure your content always comes out on top.
Why You Should Work With Embryo
We are a successful full-service digital marketing agency based in Manchester specialising in lead generation, web design, SEO, social media and content marketing. We determine how best to meet your aims, integrating the unstoppable talent within our agency to create click-inducing content that causes conversation and conversion. Each new project showcases the electrifying effects our work can have for your business and how shocking this can be for your customers and competitors. No task is too big. No goal is out of reach. It’s no wonder our clients always want more.
If your content marketing strategies haven’t quite met your goals, or you’re wondering how to give your audience something to get excited about, then let’s show them how incredible you really are.
Content Questions Answered:
What types of content are most effective? Hannah: The most effective content is that which is longform, well-written, well-linked and engages the reader on every level. It matches (or uses related words) the audience’s searches, and provides them with answers to the questions they are searching for. Expertly written content highlights your knowledge within a specific area, and why your products and services are the ones for your audience.
How do we measure content’s influence on sales and revenue? Hannah: Did a reader click on an ‘Enquire Now’, ‘Find Out More’ or ‘Book A Consultation’ button? Did their user journey see them read a blog about a product you sell, and then add that product to their basket? Did they engage with a social media campaign and decide to take you up on that ‘must have’ service? It’s pretty simple and Google Analytics and the right tracking can help.
How do we measure the effectiveness of content marketing? Hannah: Well, that all starts with your goals. What are you trying to achieve with your content, and how do the results match up? If, for example, you want people to buy the latest television from you, how many people engaged with your email marketing campaign (or latest blog) on the topic and then went on to buy said TV from you? Setting goals and tracking conversions is of the utmost importance, can help you to see what is and isn’t working, and therefore, produce the best possible outcome.
What should we stop doing? Andy: You should stop using other, less effective SEO agencies!
What’s the content marketing technology stack? Hannah: There’s a multitude of technologies we use here, but for starters, Frase, Ahrefs and WordPress are our go-tos. Frase and Ahrefs are fantastic for keywords, topic areas, research and keeping up with the latest trends within various industries, and WordPress is how we upload the majority of our content.
Why are companies using content marketing? What are the benefits? Kara: Content marketing isn’t just about exciting and engaging copy anymore (though it’s still important!). Content marketing can shape and enhance your company’s identity, while also supporting your SEO to tell search engines your site is the one it should be showing in search results.
How can I get my colleagues to share content for the company? Kara: The short answer – make it worth sharing! Content made by your company is likely to be something your team are actually interested in, so as long as what you’re creating is relevant, engaging, useful and shareable to the people who are closest to it, you’ll be one step close to whipping up that viral storm.
How often should I create content? Kara: Whenever you can! Content can be a fantastic resource as long as you keep it relevant or up to date. That means you don’t have to put together an essay from scratch every day, but keeping your content fresh is always a step in the right direction.
How do you make content exciting or appealing? Kara: That’s what we ask ourselves every day. For some topics, it’s easy, for others, not so much. The key is to put yourself in the mind of your target audience (even if they are nothing like you), and ask the questions they would ask. Of course, some artistic flair always helps, but even if you’re not the world’s greatest novelist, you can still make exciting content.
What should we stop doing? Andy: You should stop using other, less effective SEO agencies!
How can I leverage existing content in my content marketing strategy? Andy: If your existing content isn’t ranking highly on Google, that doesn’t mean you should give up on it. Existing pages can be SEO optimised with an injection of fresh content that’s valuable, in-depth and full of proper links and keywords. Old pages can even be transformed into content pillars or “main hubs,” which will link out to several “sub” pages relating to that topic. Those pages will then link back to this main hub, vastly improving the SEO performance of the page.
Our company wants to bring in more sales leads. How can content marketing help us do that? Andy: SEO-optimised content will help your website rank higher on search engines for specific keywords, getting your business in front of people who are quite literally searching for your product or service. Those top positions on Google are prime real estate: the No. 1 organic search result is 10 times more likely to get a click compared to No. 10 result. You can then wield the power of CTAs (call-to-actions) to convert these website visitors into customers.
Alternatively, content can simply serve to inform people about a particular topic without trying to force a sale. This can still be an effective tactic, though. Providing value to readers establishes a relationship of trust between them and your brand, planting the seed for a conversation further down the line.
What are the must-haves when building a content marketing strategy from scratch? Thom: You need to have a clear understanding of everything your client does and what they want from their campaign. It’s important that you’re on the same page with them when it comes to their tone of voice and general style, and you need to make sure you’ve got everything you need to conduct thorough and meaningful keyword research.
When did content marketing start? Thom: Most people say that content marketing began in the 19th century, when literacy levels and mainstream printing made information sharing more accessible than ever. But content marketing as we know it today began in the 1990s, when marketing focus shifted towards the new digital age and the even more profound ‘democratisation’ of information.
Can content marketing be used for B2B and B2C brands? Thom: Absolutely. While the tone of voice and language may change between B2B and B2C marketing, the principles remain largely the same. You need to write persuasively and with a clear idea of who it is you’re writing for. Different audiences will bring different knowledge and understanding of the given subject matter with them, and knowing that will inform how you write for your client.
How to communicate strong opinions without offending? Thom: It can be difficult, but it’s always good to avoid writing anything too offensive or inflammatory. If you’ve got a strong opinion, however, the best thing you can do is to make sure it’s clear that what you’re communicating is an opinion. And always welcome people to express alternative opinions!
Content marketing is ongoing – how do you sustain momentum? Hannah: Think about what drives people to your content in the first place and create a hook that keeps them coming back for more. Are they on your website because they have a personal connection to your brand, are they looking for information they know only you can provide them with, or are they simply there to learn more about who you are? Create content that matches all of these needs, and makes it easy for them to engage more, with CTA’s that encourage them too.
Where is content marketing going? Hannah: Capitalising on micro moments, with targeted content that instantly meets their needs.
How can content marketing help address our target audiences throughout the customer purchase journey? Hannah: This all relates to micro-moments, and is dependent on what stage of the customer buyer journey they’re in. Say someone is interested in buying the latest phone. To get their interest, you may run a PPC ad or social media campaign that promotes it. Then they’re on your website. Descriptive content that highlights its benefits, the offers you have and why they should buy from you will help convince them of your offering, and turn them into leads and conversions. Along with integrating reviews, demos and FAQs, you’re onto a real winner.
How does content marketing generate leads? Hannah: By being just what the customer is looking for. By understanding their needs and pain points and offering solutions that are clear and beneficial. By showcasing your products, services and expertise in novel and creative ways, and capitalising on the latest trends.
How do you integrate SEO into your content? Kara: Aside from what you’d expect – keywords, locations, phrases – optimising for search engines means being the best at what you do. Long-form, educational, relevant content that gives users what they want is exactly what Google and other search engines want!
What do you think are the essential components of good web content? Kara: An understanding of the topic, useful and relevant answers to real questions and an engaging, well defined tone of voice! There are hundreds of elements that make up good web content, these are just some of the most important ones!
Why are some companies successful with content marketing while others are not? Kara: Some organisations see content as an afterthought and don’t put in the time or graft it needs. Short content that doesn’t really tell you or your users anything of value won’t get you anywhere, even if it’s stuffed with keywords. Taking time to learn your topic and give users something of note will get you a long way.
How do you convince all levels of an organisation to move towards content marketing and away from campaign to campaign? Kara: It’s pretty simple, as the results are right there! Seeing the impact content marketing can have on your SEO, and your business identity overall is massive, and will get you closer to your business goals.
How long will it take to see positive results from building great content? Andy: Like we tell our clients, it usually takes around three months to see noticeable results from our content strategies. However, it depends on the quality of the content, the quality of your competitors’ content, the search volume of your target keywords and the level of competition for your target keywords.
How do we convince the management team that content marketing works? Andy: By showing them the stats: companies with blogs tend to get 67% more leads than those who don’t have a blog; inbound marketing close rates are 8 to 10 times higher compared to those of outbound efforts; and companies who deploy content are seeing 5 to 10% better retention rates. Or, you can look at all the great results we’ve gotten for our clients here at Embryo.
Where does Embryo come up with our content ideas? Why is writing long-form content such a big part of what Embryo does? What are the editorial and commercial benefits of creating interactive content? Andy: Remember in Dexter’s Laboratory when Dexter would mix all the chemicals together in his lab? That’s basically how our content is created. Our content ideas are formulated by a mix of keyword research, competitor research and top-secret copywriting tools, as well as a healthy dose of our content team’s creative ingenuity. The reason we focus on long-form content is because that’s what Google values (and rewards with higher SERP rankings), so long as the content provides the information that their search users are looking for. Long-form content will help to position your brand as a voice of authority within your field which, in turn, makes you a more attractive choice for potential customers.
How do you decide what topic/subject to write on? Andy: Our expertise and experience allows us to find and choose topics that will get our clients results. If a client exists in a particularly complex or niche industry, then we’ll get input from the client themselves to ensure the content is up to scratch. In most cases, we decide the direction while the client helps us fill in the blanks. We like to think of ourselves as the doctors and our clients as the patients.
Our organisation is new to content marketing, so where do we start? Thom: Start by producing as much content as you can. Get a blog section up and running with frequent posts and start aiming to add to your key services pages and homepage. Find a keyword research tool you like and start learning about how you can optimise the quality content you’re generating!
How do we determine whether the company should have a content platform? Thom: Does the company want to engage with customers and users, drive traffic through organic search, and push for more on-site conversions? Then content marketing is going to be the right fit for you.
What do you enjoy most about content writing? Thom: When writing content, whether for a range of different clients or just on one subject matter, you learn a great deal about whatever it is you’re writing content about as a matter of necessity. I love coming away from something I’ve written with a detailed understanding of something I never knew about!
Why is having directors buy into content marketing so important? Thom: Because content marketing requires commitment and patience in general. Producing thousands of words of long form content isn’t easy – it takes time and hard work. Also, content is a long-term investment and you’ll only begin seeing your best results months down the line. Making sure your directors understand this and are committed to the campaign is crucial.
What tone should I use? Hannah: This is dependent on your brand’s personality, values and what you want people to say about you. A good place to start is competitor research – how are your rivals presenting themselves, and what aspects do you like and dislike? Then think about what makes you unique, what your strengths are and how your company culture feeds into this. Feeding this all into your content will help create that personality that readers will love to engage with.
What content management systems are you familiar with? Hannah: WordPress and a few, bespoke client CMS platforms.
What is your proofreading process? Hannah: The way I proofread is by using the ‘Suggesting’ function on Google Docs, so that the writer can see their errors and learn from them, while correcting their own work. I check for grammatical errors, whether key client information is correct (e.g. phone numbers) and whether links are suitable (i.e. no competitors).
What is content marketing not? Hannah: An excuse to write rubbish, or pester potential clients with information they don’t want. Content marketing should always have the customers’ best interests at heart, and provide useful and actionable information.
What is the best length of content? Kara: That depends entirely on what you’re using it for, but as a rule of thumb, the longer the better as long as it’s useful, rich and well presented! Around 2500 words is the average number of words on a position #1 ranking page, although it could well be more in 2020 and beyond, but if you can get more on there, do, as content is only becoming more and more important!
How to sell the value of content marketing to sales? Kara: Again, it’s easy – the results are there! Showing your sales teams the impact high-quality content can have on your search engine rankings is all it takes. The numbers do not lie, but it’s the words that’ll get you there.
How do you plan and schedule your work? Kara: At Embryo, we use Notion to plan what we’re doing and when we’re doing it. However, we’ll also liaise closely with the SEO team to work out what kind of content and topics are really going to give our clients the best results and help them reach their business goals.
Why does content marketing fail? Kara: Content marketing fails because organisations half-arse it! Content that doesn’t actually add value to the lives of your users will fail, because search engines don’t see the point of it! More to the point, they’re right – content done badly and without purpose, value or intent, is completely pointless, and that’s when content marketing fails.
What’s the difference between audience and traffic? Andy: Traffic is the number of people who visit your website, while audience is the people you’re currently targeting and are trying to target.
What’s the Difference Between Content Marketing and Social Media? Andy: The main difference between content marketing and social media is the length of the content. Social media (particularly Twitter) calls for short and snappy content that can be easily digested and shared by users on those platforms. Content marketing, on the other hand, is geared towards search engines, where in-depth, long-form content rises to the top (literally).
How can I use content marketing to increase brand presence in the most efficient way? Andy: By targeting long-tail keywords. There may be less search volume with these longer keywords, but the competition is much lower so it’s easier to rank high for them. Plus, if you’re ranking highly for a longer, more specific search term, you’re targeting people who are further down the sales funnel and are more likely to convert. Trying to target shorter (but more popular) search terms is inefficient due to the sheer competition you’ll face.
What are the best ways to build an audience with content? Andy: Provide value to your audience. Give them informative, educational and insightful content. Answer the questions that your audience are asking. Cover topics that they’re interested in. Deliver a wide range of content and explore different channels – don’t just upload it to your website or blog, but give your audience exclusive content via email or as a physical product. Most importantly, deliver quality content on a consistent basis.
How can we make something go viral? Andy: Honestly, going viral shouldn’t be your goal. As an avid social media user myself, there’s nothing worse than watching a brand try to force a viral tweet or Instagram post.
Virality is all about right tweet, right time (and sometimes the right meme). Social media users, particularly those who grew up with it, can sniff out a viral attempt from a mile away.
How does marketing without talking about or promoting our product/service help us create leads and sales? Thom: Content marketing is as much about providing engaging, valuable content for your customers as it is about anything else. Good content that provides value wins people over and persuades them to buy into your brand and style. It also allows you to cast a wide net when it comes to organic search.
Tell us something that is unique about your writing style? Thom: Wherever possible, I like to write as conversationally as I can. This can mean being very casual and relaxed in my language and grammar – as long as I’m getting the point across and people feel like they’re really being spoken to by a human being, I’m happy! Of course, this varies from client to client and I aim to only be as casual as is appropriate.
Why would I want to educate my customers and help my competition? Thom: Because people love informative and useful content. Your customers will appreciate you all the more for educative content. It’s not about helping the competition, it’s about treating your customers the way they want to be treated and gaining brand sentiment, loyalty and recall while you do.
How does content drive revenue? Thom: Good content marketing is all about getting people on-site and keeping them there with informative and authoritative content that they both trust and enjoy. By supporting your SEO efforts, content drives traffic to site, increases visibility, improves user experience and pushes for conversions.