Smart business owners get it

Smart business owners understand the difference between expenses and investments.

Between scoring quick wins in the short-term and building value in the long-term.

And the difference between paying for advertising and investing in content.

Advertising is an expense

The goal of advertising is generating sales and enquiries. And while those sales and enquiries generate returns for your business, advertising is still generally regarded as an expense rather than an investment.

Advertising isn’t viewed as an asset, either, because it doesn’t accumulate in value. When you stop funding it, your ads stop running — and your income from them stops, too.

If you’re paying enough money, advertising can get you to the top of Google as a sponsored result. It’s great for selling and you’ll see results quickly, but it doesn’t create value for your business in the long term.

Content is an investment

Content writing is a more sustainable long-term strategy that works towards a number of different goals.

Its main goal is not to sell, but to help your prospects buy. And it does that with articles that answer their questions and give them the information they need to make the right purchasing decisions.

Your blog will accumulate in value the more content you add to it. It will improve your website’s SEO performance and it will have the potential to become a self-sustaining revenue stream.

When content isn’t the best strategy

Although content writing works brilliantly, it’s a slow-burning strategy that will take time to yield results. And if you want to do it properly, you’ll need to hire an expert SEO content writer, which will cost you money.

But not every business has time to wait or money to invest. For example, you might be a startup with a new website domain, limited funds, and a need for quick results. In which case, advertising would be the better option.

And you don’t have to choose one or the other. Many businesses use both, with advertising to generate reliable sales and content to drive more web traffic.

Why content is a smart choice

If advertising works so well and so quickly, why would you bother investing in content?

Well, there are a few good reasons, so let’s go through those now.

Organic results outperform paid ones

On a Search Engine Results Page (SERP), there are typically sponsored results (paid ads) at the top followed by organic results, which rank without being paid for.

According to FirstPageSage the click-through rates (CTR) for the web pages listed on Google’s first page* are:

  • Paid Ad #1 ——> 2.1%
  • Paid Ad #2 ——> 1.4%
  • Organic #1 ——> 39.8%
  • Organic #2 ——> 18.7%
  • Organic #3 ——> 10.2%

*Results with no snippet or local pack.

Content is created to rank organically, so it will appear underneath any paid ads. But it will also outperform the paid ads by a considerable margin.

Content connects you with more of your market

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Advertising sells to the people who are ready to buy. People who’ve already done their research and who know what they want.

But that might be a small percentage of your total market.

What about the people who are only just realising they have a problem and are searching for answers and information? What about the people who don’t yet know the right terminology to use? What about the people who want more trust in who they’re buying from?

Content can connect you with all these people, too.

Content does more than sell

Content isn’t written to sell — its purpose is to help your prospects buy. And, yes, there is a difference.

You can create content for your prospects that:

  • Shows them how things work
  • Answers their frequently asked questions
  • Educates them on what they need to know
  • Compares and contrasts products/services
  • Gives them information, ideas and inspiration.

Through your content, you can make a connection with your audience that helps to demonstrate your experience and expertise while building authority and trust.

Content helps you rank for more keywords

You’ve probably optimised your website with the best SEO keywords for your business. But there’ll be lots more keywords you could be ranking for that would help you reach more prospects.

Writing content gives you a way to target those additional keywords and reach your full potential.

Content is a predictable outgoing

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

As effective as advertising can be, it’s a continuous, unpredictable and often escalating expense. This is why some businesses only choose to use it until their websites start gaining traction organically.

Content is a predictable outgoing. The amount you invest each month remains the same, which makes it easier to keep to a budget.

Content never stops working

As I mentioned previously, your advertising will only run while you’re paying for it. If you decide to stop paying, for any reason, you’ll have nothing to show for it.

Content is for keeps. It can stay on your website, drawing traffic, for as long as it’s current and relevant. If it dates, you can update it. And if it becomes irrelevant, you can often repurpose it.

Content introduces new people to your brand

Each time your content attracts a new visitor to your website, this gives you an opportunity to introduce that person to your brand. This can be particularly good if your brand isn’t already on their radar and they’re discovering you for the first time.

Content is impartial

Advertising sells to anyone who sees it — and it’s always biased in your favour.

Content is more about appealing to the right people. Because, let’s face it, not everyone is your ideal customer or the right fit for your product/service. And wrong-fit customers often don’t make happy customers.

If a prospect has a problem and is researching the best way to solve it, they’ll be looking for impartial advice rather than a sales pitch. With content, you can objectively show them what their options are, talk them through each one and recommend the solution in each situation — whether that’s what you’re offering or not.

When you’re giving information and advice freely, impartially, and without a sales agenda, you’ll be giving your prospects a positive experience. They’ll remember you as a credible expert and a trusted source of information and they’ll feel confident to buy from you, either now or in the future.

Content converts visitors into subscribers

If you write the kind of content people like to read, they’ll often be happy to join your mailing list so they can receive more of it. Having those people on your mailing list means you’re no longer relying on them visiting your website and you can target them more directly.

Content generates better quality leads

Content can help you filter the leads you’re getting by appealing to the right-fit prospects and repelling the wrong ones. You can achieve this by writing attracting content for the people you want to work with and repelling content to deter the people who aren’t a good fit.

Want to do something smart for your business today?

Investing in content will help you:

  • Rank for more keywords on Google
  • Reach more of your ideal customers
  • Get better quality leads for your business
  • Create a valuable and sustainable resource on your website.

And, with more than 15 years’ experience writing high-performing content, I could be the content writer to help you do that.

To find out more, visit the Content Writing page of my website, or get in touch to discuss your needs.

Photo by Matt Glover Photography

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