Andrew Groat: Hey, everyone. You're watching the MeMedia Get Fact Up vodcast, coming to you live from the MeDojo Studio in Burleigh Heads. My name's Andrew Groat. I'm filling in for our fearless leader Chris. Today I have Shani Ishigaki with me.
Shani Ishigaki: Hi.
Andrew Groat: How are you?
Shani Ishigaki: Good. How are you?
Andrew Groat: Good. Thanks. Good. Today, we're talking about-
Shani Ishigaki: Content marketing.
Andrew Groat: Content marketing as a business marketing tool. It's definitely a style of marketing that requires a lot of faith. Everyone expects results within three months and it's super unrealistic. There's a process to it and that's why I've got Shani here today, so tell us a little bit about what you do here at MeMedia.
Shani Ishigaki: I'm a copywriter here at MeMedia. Basically I create content for the different clients that we have. Firstly, I try to identify with the business goals of the clients that I'm working for — and then I'll carry out some research for that business and on the consumers that we're targeting and — really looking at what they're looking for.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. Okay.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah. I think that's really important.
Andrew Groat: Why would you do content marketing? What would you tell a business owner to suggest why it's a good idea to do content marketing?
Shani Ishigaki: I think content marketing is what gets you noticed. It's about sharing information with your current and prospective customers. You really have to try and build their trust, which is really how you build and grow your business. I think that's really important.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. I mean, the ultimate goal, I suppose, of content marketing is to get more business, but I think the problem with content marketing is most people don't see the connection between the writing and getting more business. I think the issue is people have never really seen the results, but it 100% works and we know that. I've got a slide here that you can see. This blog that was written here, it didn't really kick off for the first month, even two months, but they've actually gotten over 5,000 visits to their website online. There was no advertising or anything involved. That's completely organic.
Shani Ishigaki: It's an investment of time really isn’t it.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. It's a snowball thing, but yeah, like I said, with a little bit of faith it can be very, very powerful. Let's get into exactly the technical side of content marketing. Something we talk about a lot is shoulder niches, and it's a really abstract concept. It's pretty hard for a lot of business owners to get their head around.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah. Definitely.
Andrew Groat: It means what we're saying, writing for the layman.
Shani Ishigaki: Pretty much. Instead of writing about your services, you're writing for the people who are looking for your services. They might not necessarily know what they're looking for or know that they need a particular service, so basically ... things like interior design over office fit out, that seems to work.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. We were talking about that before. Yeah.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah. People are looking at the design of their office rather than just a specific fit out and they're not realising that's essentially a fit out.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. It's a slight change in thinking and wording, but it just makes so much more sense to the layman, who doesn't know of that industry terminology and stuff like that.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah.
Andrew Groat: We're also talking about for the medical industry, a lot of people-
Shani Ishigaki: Doctor Google?
Andrew Groat: Yeah. A lot of people are doing the doctor Google thing so they're not looking at the procedures that you offer. They're looking at symptoms and things like that. That's the same thing. You have to start there. A lot of business owners can only think from the scope of their own industry and that can really hurt them when they're trying to get potential customers to their website.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah. You want to create content that's really easy for your consumer to digest. You don't want to use a lot of mumbo jumbo lingo that's only understandable by you. You want to try and educate your consumers, so you might think, "look, that's my job. I'm supposed to be providing that service." But you really have to take your ego out of it and-
Andrew Groat: Yeah. I was just thinking that actually. Yeah.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah. You really have to try and help your customer. They're actually looking for this information. They're going to feel a lot more confident in you as well if you're willing to share that information, so I think that's really important and obviously it's important to do the research as well and get that right.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. That's right. If you don't believe it, you just have to do the keyword research and you can see. There's a lot more volume for the general wording so you have to go for that and figure out creative ways to tie that in.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah.
Andrew Groat: The next thing that we're talking about, and this is a great point that you brought up earlier today, is don't be afraid to give value. A lot of business are really salesy with content marketing. They try to hold their cards close and not share information, but the problem is it's pull marketing, not push. You've seen heaps of this problem.
Shani Ishigaki: Business owners really need to get over that. I think they need to realise that the customer isn't going to go elsewhere because you've provided them with that information. It's actually really helpful and it helps to build on that trust. They see you as an expert on the topic, which is really positive I think.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. I guess they worry that they're going to make themselves redundant if they just share all their industry secrets, but a good analogy of this is you go to a motivational seminar and you've been really motivated while you're there and then you step out the door and you're like, "alright I'm going to get my life together." But you start to feel less motivated and then nothing really changes and eventually you buy the DVD or something like that. It's the same thing.
Shani Ishigaki: Same kind of concept. Yeah.
Andrew Groat: People are still going to want a professional to help them out.
Shani Ishigaki: Exactly.
Andrew Groat: No one has the time and expertise to be doing it.
Shani Ishigaki: Yeah. A lot of people before hiring a professional they want to know that they know their stuff.
Andrew Groat: Exactly. It doesn't mean that they're going to basically steal their business and move on.
Shani Ishigaki: Exactly.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. Be careful with outsourcing creative work. This is something we talk about a fair bit here. I'm not saying don't outsource. There's definitely a lot of things that you can really leverage outsourcing with, but when it comes to content creation it's dangerous.
Shani Ishigaki: I think so. I think people need to realise that Google actually punishes people for creating unoriginal content.
Andrew Groat: It really does. Yeah.
Shani Ishigaki: It's pretty typical of people who outsource their content writing to just repurpose content that's already out there. Google doesn't like that at all. I think it's really important to stand out from all the pollution that's out there. I think you really need to produce quality over the quantity of content. I think that's really vital.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. Absolutely. What you said about pollution's a good point because Google's a business. We went over this in the SEO podcast, but Google's a business and their job's massive. There's a million blog articles, literally a million blog articles posted a day. It needs to find the best 10 and put them on the front page. It's a huge job. I mean, if you're not creating something engaging, and Google knows if something's engaging, then you'll just be part of the trash really. I'm sorry to say, but you need to be as good as the top 10, if not better, to make it through.
Shani Ishigaki: You need to be offering something unique as well.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. Exactly. Exactly. That brings us into your part of this. How do you create amazing content, apart from not outsourcing creative obviously?
Shani Ishigaki: Research. Keyword research is a big thing. At MeMedia, we put together these ... well, Andrew, you're the expert at this. Putting together these amazing keyword cheat sheets.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. We have a sheet here that we made today actually.
Shani Ishigaki: They're a Godsend. I think that's really important. Researching from reputable sources as well. My personal favourite is Google Scholar, particularly with healthcare providers. You don't want to just be looking at a slide that you found on Google-
Andrew Groat: Or a Buzzfeed article or something like that.
Shani Ishigaki: Or a Buzzed article. Yeah. You want to be doing your research. You want to make sure that it's peer reviewed. You don't want to shoot yourself in the foot when you're in the medical industry. I think that's really important. Research, research, research. It needs to be engaging, so visual communication is really powerful.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. Yeah. I've got an awesome article that you made for a client here. Just bring it up.
Shani Ishigaki: Okay.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. Yeah. Exactly. Yeah.
Shani Ishigaki: Yep. I think images are really important. Lots of images. Something that people can connect with. Bolding of keywords is really important. You can put some internal links in there as well. That's really helpful. Shorter paragraphs and punchier headlines. I think something like 80% of people don't even read the article. They read the headline, so you want to create a headline that's engaging so that people do read the article.
Andrew Groat: Yeah. You're giving them bite sized pieces rather than cramming a whole article down their throats because it's a lot. You see that wall of text and you're like pssh, I might read this later.
Shani Ishigaki: People are busy. Yeah. People are busy.
Andrew Groat: No one reads it later.
Shani Ishigaki: They're skimming.
Andrew Groat: Or, if all else fails, get an expert to do it for you I suppose.
Shani Ishigaki: Yes. Yes.
Andrew Groat: Anyway, that's about all we have time for today. Yes. If you're looking for content marketing, to get into content marketing, feel free to drop us a line because we can help you out. As always, if you're looking to do podcasting or vodcasting, the studio's up for hire so there's that too. It's fully kitted out and can be managed if you need that too. Thank you for your time Shani.
Shani Ishigaki: Thanks for having me.
Andrew Groat: Thank you for watching. See you next week.