The Use Of Blog To Increase A Website’s Seo


Having a blog on your website is an essential tool for increasing search engine optimization (SEO) for your website. Why, you may ask? Because most search engines are ranking the most recent information on a given keyword search first. So if you made your website content several years ago, it might not rank as high in search results as a blog article that was recently made last week. Search engines are now indexing the entire web for the most current content on a certain topic, and the way to give it to them is with a blog.

Blogs and SEO

Having an active blog on your website boosts its SEO in four main ways:

It keeps your website active – To a search engine, every new blog content matters when it comes to site ranking. This means your website is not stagnant, but rather an active one that attracts greater attention from search engines.

It gives more linking opportunities – Just as SEO strategies on your website are crucial, so are SEO efforts off your website. This is done by building links to your site, usually referred to as off-site or off page optimization.

Think of off-site links as a popularity contest. The more entries you have, the more popular your website is with most search engines and the higher your site ranks in search results. It’s one of the easiest and less time-consuming ways of building these external links is with a blog. Each time you post fresh content to your blog, you add a new link to your website. You can also upgrade it by adding links to certain pages on your website, or to certain information in previous blog posts. Then, when you promote your blog on your social bookmarking sites or social media profiles, readers click on these links and you score those priceless back links to your site.

It draws social media attention – Blog pages are one of the easiest things to share on social media. These social shares increase your website’s SEO like nothing else. When you share a certain blog post on any of your social media profiles (be it Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ or Pinterest ), you’re actually promoting user interaction, which in turn builds awareness for your business and driving more traffic to your website. Also, it is advisable to utilize videos or images in your blog posts as much as possible to attract even greater attraction from social media readers.

It adds more keyword opportunities – Keywords are the main key when it comes to matching what people are searching for with relevant websites. Though you can use only so many keywords in a website content before it sounds too forced with keywords.

But with a blog, you can regularly add new keywords with every new entry; these are the keywords that might not be included in any of your other website content. You can even stay current with keywords that are on-trend in your line of business by integrating them into your blog article. Because of these additional keywords, your website ranks with search engines more than it ever did. In addition, these new keywords bring more possibility for other related websites to link to your blog.

Contact us today to get started with incorporating a blog to your website, or optimizing an existing one to improve its SEO potential!

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The Main Element of Content Marketing & SEO


Lots of business owner view content marketing and SEO as separate, but a solid keyword research can be used to boost up content marketing approach.

Imagine you are in an auditorium surrounded by a large audience. You can say anything you want, but as soon as you finish your first sentence, people would decide whether to stay put and listen or get up and leave the room that instant.

This is a problem every business owner, content producer and even blogger, struggles with every day. Unless your content is cautiously planned and crafted based on the needs of your audience, your SEO methods will likely fail.

Keyword research is one of the essential elements of your content planning and production.

Main elements to reflect here are:

• How do you create content that your customers will find appealing?

• How do you link keyword analysis and SEO to content marketing?

• How can you develop, nurture and combine your profitability with a clever content approach?

Tell stories that people find fascinating

You should always keep your eyes and ears open to what’s happening in your niche. One very reliable tool to do this is through search engines.

People type queries into the search box that they are an interest of. If you can obtain some useful tools such as: Google Predictive Search, Google Trends, and Google Keyword Planner, you’ll soon have an overview of what your audience usually seeks for.

1. Know your customers better

When your content seems to magically answer their unspoken questions, the people visiting your website through the help of search engines will be highly impressed.

For instance, if you’re managing a hotel website, then a guest enters your site by searching broad or generic terms like “London holiday”, is less likely to book a room than one who organized more detailed queries such as “budget hotels in London” or “London hotel vacancy”.

So if you’re getting important traffic from guests through these generic terms, you might want to think about optimizing contents that speaks better to their needs.

2. Effective Communication

Another benefit of keyword research and analysis is that your communication with your target guests will be more specific and effective. It allows you to connect deeply with the visitors and engage them with more sincerity.

With keyword research, you can build specific content that seamlessly targets your message while engaging to certain visitors who use specific search terms to find your site.

When your content is superbly targeted at a specific niche audience, it becomes very effective at getting prospects to do what you need. Conversion rates could become higher and marketing expenses will decrease.

3. Plan your content

Strong keyword research lets you prioritize content. You’ll also have a sensible idea of what content is ‘in demand’ and when it is likely to convey the highest impact on your business goals. If you concentrate on the precise keywords and plan accordingly, your content will reach potential customers as soon as they are starting to search for it.

4. Be memorable

Most SEO and content specialists recommend producing “relevant content” for your target keywords. But pertinent content is no longer sufficient. As search engine algorithms grow more refined and advanced, they are now able to surface precise results for a specified enquiry. This “relevant” content will just go under an ocean of other “relevant” content pieces.

Instead, you should create remarkable content; the kind that allows your website to be the one-stop destination for your target audience. An exceptional content strategy allows people to remember you, and that’s exactly you need; a great branding.

Other sites may even link to your content! If you’re lucky enough, you’ll have excellent backlinks from top websites in your niche, including industry-leading sites, newspapers, and other leading sites who will eventually share it on social media. All these factors expand your SEO and drive more traffic to your site.

5. Merge creativity with relevant data

Various people think that working with keyword data limits creativity in content strategy, but it doesn’t have to be that way. You can still be as creative as you can be while efficiently utilizing search data.

Truth is, without data, you run the possibility of wasting precious time and money on content that won’t move you faster and closer to your business goals. Stop taking chances and protect your business’s future by building your content marketing on solid knowledge, skills, and effective search data.

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Developing Your Strategy in Content Marketing


Have you always wanted to create a strategy in content marketing? Worry not, for you have come to the right place. Before we begin, there is one vital difference you should fully understand: A strategy in content marketing is NOT similar to a “content strategy”.

While some people frequently use the two terms interchangeably, Robert Rose clarifies the dissimilarity of the two:

Content marketing strategy: The content marketers draw in people and improve the bigger story that an organization conveys. Their emphasis is utilizing different methods in order to engage an audience. They’re using content to drive profitable behavior.

Content strategy: In contrast, content strategy explores more of the “creation, publication, and governance of useful, usable content.” Content strategy helps you on how to manage content as an advantage.


Must I create a strategy for content marketing?

Definitely yes! Not only do you need to have a strategy, but you also need to document it. Those people with a documented strategy in content marketing:

• Feel considerably less challenged with each part of content marketing

• Are more likely to consider themselves as proficient at content marketing

• Usually consider themselves more efficient in their use of all social media channels and content marketing strategies

• Were capable of spending bigger percentage of their advertising budget on content marketing


What to include in my content marketing strategy?

Think of the “content marketing strategy” as a framework for your business and your client’s requests, as well as a comprehensive plan on how you will utilize the content to properly address them.

While there are no absolute “templates” for creating a proper content marketing strategy; each aspect should be exclusive to the business that created it. Although, there are quite a few components that they usually consist of:

1. The innovation of content marketing: By relaying your reasons for generating content, the possible threats involved, as well as your idea of what victory would look like; you are much more likely to attain exclusive support for your scheme — and to acquire a consent to make mistakes from time to time as you discover what works best for your line of business.

2. The business strategy for content marketing: This one contains the unique value you are considering to offer through your content, the vital objectives you have for your content program, and the specifics of your business model. It should also summarize the opportunities, as well as the obstacles you may come across as you implement your plan.

3. The audience and content plans: This is the part where you define the target audiences for whom you will produce the necessary content, as you should be able to outline their needs. You may also want to plan out the type of content you can deliver through their buyer’s journey so as to assist them closer to their goals.

4. The brand story: In this phase, you should distinguish your content marketing in terms of the specific messages and ideas you want to convey, how those messages vary from the competition, and how you perceive the development once you have shared them with your target audience.

5. The channel plan: This must consist of the platforms you will eventually use in order to voice out your story; the conditions, objectives and methods for each one; and how you will associate them so that they generate an interconnected concept.

Must I convey the content marketing strategy with other departments in the company?

It may be favourable to offer everyone in your organization an access to the content marketing strategy, even those who may not be openly involved in the development of the content marketing.

This is mainly vital with enormous organizations, as it can help reduce replicated efforts, keep different departments on the same page, and guarantee that everyone is functioning toward the same content goals.

How you convey your strategy depends on the culture and structure of your organization. In some circumstances, it may be suitable to share the complete documentation; but in other situations, it may make more sense to generate targeted outlines for certain shareholders based on how your strategy will influence their individual roles.

To sum things up, consider the following factors:
How can you utilize the values of content marketing to “sell” the content marketing through your organization? What do the people care about the most? These factors should help you conclude which components of your strategy are most suitable to share with each department.

Must I update my content marketing strategy? How often?

Their may be some aspects of your strategy that should remain even as your content marketing program changes and develops; specifically, your business goals and mission.

In reality, these two things are definitely essential that you may want to place them on a wall somewhere, so you can keep them in view every time you are working on your content.

Nevertheless, other parts of your content marketing strategy will benefit from being periodically updated and revised. To make sure that your content marketing program remains on track, think about revisiting your core topics, channel strategy and team procedures on a yearly basis, or more regularly if your program is still in progress.
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data driven story

Five Important Narratives in Writing Data-Driven Stories

An obvious growing interest is being shown in data-driven stories where they refer to its growing trend as the next big thing in the world of content marketing. They also acknowledge that this growing trend will also reshape both content and advertising.

Although some people think that data-enhanced storytelling is just new in data journalism, the truth is, this form of journalism has been around since the mid-1800s. It is even recorded that the first data-driven stories that were recorded were in 1860.

These days, the current interest about data-driven stories underlies in the increased access to large datasets and convenient data analysis tools. The combination of the two is helping set up a new trend for journalists and writers in discovering and telling new stories regarding data research.

MLA is also fuelling this new breed of journalism as we look for these hidden stories inside social data. We mostly look for new breakthroughs into content marketing, and how particular content gets boosted via linking and sharing. To help you understand what data-driven stories are and how it can help you, here are five core narratives:


Understanding Data Driven Stories

According to Wikipedia, data-driven journalism is a form of analyzing and filtering large data sets so that they create a news story. The formula is to bring to light insights from the analysis of large data sets to show stories that may be hidden. Data-driven journalism lets journalists find hidden or possible new angles to a story.

The process of finding new stories includes finding and filtering data, analysis, and visualization, and telling the story. Charts and images as a form of visualization are often an essential part of storytelling.

It Is Not That Easy to Create Data Driven Stories

data driven storiesSome think that creating data-driven stories are quick and easy to make. Although data analysis is far different from telling stories from journalists who brave to cover dangerous war zones. It is also true that some writers create quick and cheap stories through giving out simple polls just to say it is a form of a data-driven journalism.

However, data-driven stories should be 80 percent hard work, 10 percent great ideas and to percent output. The same on how MLA works. Our process is to analyze different data without knowing if there will be significant insights that tell a story. To create a relative story, a large amount of time will be spent in gathering, filtering and cleaning the data. This will also be followed by running particular types of analysis, going beyond possible difficulties and test theories that can provide more datasets.

MLA is also known for analyzing datasets of millions of articles. We mostly look for insights and at times, we spend days, weeks and even months to uncover anything that has a value in the story. We may at times not find a story that is news worthy, but if we do, the discovery is rewarding since we are able to find new insights and hidden stories that only we could have found in a data.

Data Driven Stories are Mostly Unique

One of the best assets of data-driven stories is that they are mostly created telling unique stories. They can show new trends and interactions that can make people find interest to a new issue. This does not mean though that you will need new data to create an original research. For instance, in the famous MoneyBall story, there was a lot of data available to Peter Brand at that time. To make his data unique, he changed his analysis and research. These days, widely available datasets and a range of tools can be used to help analyse the data.

It would be to your advantage if you have access to a unique data set. Here at MLA Web Design, our main business is to crawl and collect very big data sets since most of these companies have such unique data. As these businesses have data that is also necessary to industry and growth, they will have available sales data, market intelligence and issues regarding data from your support desk. The available data that you might think that is just common may indeed provide insights that can help your audience.

Five Important Data-Driven Stories

Trends. There are many different stories that can be trending. Mostly these stories centres on what are popular and falling over time. But, there are also trends that are flat that can become a major story. A good example of trends is the increasing or decreasing number of smartphones. Once you find a trend, the next question is why its story is increasing or falling? So the trend itself is not the whole story, which could prompt a new investigation.

Rank order or league tables. For instance, this could be an area which gathered a lot of crime rates or a politician that is getting the most social coverage.

Comparisons. This is how one company is comparing its performance over another. For instance, we can find a comparison between Twitter’s failure to grow its active users and how Facebook is performing better than Twitter. This story has also been taken by many different publications.

Relationships. Investigating relationships between data can be difficult, especially if you are comparing the relationship of one factor to another factor. But, with the advances in machine learning, we may be able to gather more data driven stories.

To look at the relationships between the two sets of data, it is necessary to keep in mind that the connection is not the same as the cause but it can still allow areas for more studies. Another way to explore relationships is to build a more in-depth predictive linear regression models. There are still a lot of tools that can allow you to use advanced techniques like the use of machine learning.

Machine learning uses algorithms that can get data and create predictions. In nature, you can create a model from data inputs that will allow algorithms to create its data-driven predictions. Machine learning is a growing trend where we can expect more activity.

Surprising data. This is data that challenge or support something that readers may view as correct or surprising.

Tips in Creating Data-driven Stories

1. Begin with an idea. All news begin with an idea. Once you find a good story, search for data that can confirm your ideas or probably oppose your ideas. Make certain that you will focus on an interesting standpoint that will capture your audience.

2. Verify your facts. If you create a mistake about an inaccurate data you have posted, you may soon get calls about it. Inaccurate data mostly get scrutinized on the Internet so it is important to check the facts and be careful about how you write your story. Make sure that you can verity your facts to support the flow of your story.

3. Provide at least two key highlights. Since your data will need supporting statistics, you will need to highlight at least two key statistics as the main focus of your research. This way your readers will be able to remember your story more, instead of placing a couple of statistics most would not understand.

4. Use of visuals and tables. It is most suitable to use charts and graphics when writing data driven stories. Trends mostly work well with line charts. You can also use tables to highlight data as well.

5. Make it human. Make sure that that the data driven story you are creating can be understandable by those who will read it. Even if it is a story about you, a client or a colleague, the data should be in a matter of writing that people can comprehend. While economics is the perfect way to predict human behaviour which most people don’t care about, data-driven stories should focus on things people think and care about.

6. Provide insights and guidance. Think of ways on how to improve your story based on the analysis provided. Analyze how other people will also view your story and if another person writes it, would they be giving the same data as you are giving? If you can analyze your story this way, then you may be able to create a good story as it tells you that your insights are making you create better decisions.

Visit MLA Web Designs now or call us at +44 (0)203 823 9033 to inquire about our products and services.

Content Marketing

5 Effective Ways to Examine Your Competitors Content


It is not just your site that you need to focus on, in the world of competition, you will also need to analyse your competitor. However, competitor analysis can be a daunting task, which makes most website owners just put this at the back of their list. Still, this task is very important especially if you want to keep ahead in an increasingly overcrowded market.

To ensure that you know what your competitors are doing and how you can outperform them, here are some steps:

Know Who the Competition Is

While you may know some of your competitors, chances are, you may still not know some of them. Your task is to find and identify your direct, indirect and available competitors.

Direct competitors – these are companies who have similar products and services like yours, which you may know already.

Indirect competitors – these are your competitors that offer similar services and products but for a wider audience. To find them, do a keyword analysis and see who shows up in the terms you rank for.

Perceived or replacement competitors – While these competitors do not offer the same services you are offering, they may have products or services that can become a replacement to yours. To understand who they are, you need to conduct customer surveys and do social listening.

While most people may not have the time to do a thorough analysis of more than 20 sites,  three to five sites is ok, while incorporating a mix of your competitors listed above. Once you have done this, you will be able to get a rounded view of the other companies that offer similar products and services like yours.


Evaluate Your Competitors’ On-site SEO

Beat Your Competitor

There are many ways to gauge on the success of your competitor. From analysing their H1 tags, meta descriptions, up-to-date on-page content, and so on. You can also include if your competitor is using internal linking, finding related keywords, also considers the length of content, and if their site is SEO friendly.

Check out their On-Page Content

Understand your competitors content by checking out if their content is relevant, informative and engaging. Try to do a couple of searches and see where the competition appears. If any of your competitors are ranking consistently high, evaluate what the content is and what they did to the content.

The days when writers just create uninteresting text just to hit a word count is over, especially if it is just a duplicate of another recycled work. These days, content that offers valuable information about their offerings, together with relevant keywords early on in the content is more effective.

Content that also uses multi-media will allow users and possible clients to stay longer and engage with the site even more than those with none. This will also result in reducing bounce rates while making users stay and wanting for more.

Once you have carefully analysed what your competitor is doing, it is time to fix your own site. Check out what you can do to improve it. You can also add videos or audios to your content if you need it, which will eventually lead to a more engaging site.

Examine Larger Contents

It is not just the blog posts which contain their infographics, interactive pieces and eBooks that you have to worry about. You will also need to find their content that is being shared and linked.Make sure that you find their most socially shared content. Instead of trawling to what campaigns performed well.

You can also narrow your list down and include their content types that includes their blog posts and larger campaigns. However, do not just analyse the pieces one by one, but find out what makes these pieces appealing to users. This process will help you learn how to create your own topics and ideas and also know what you should improve on.

Who Supports them

Once you know what your competitors’ best pieces are, try to find out who are their top influencers or supporters. Those who are linking and sharing your competitors’ content may also do the same for you, especially if they like what you are doing.

Make sure that you view sharers of the content you are investigating, filter their followers to find who among them are influential. Get this list and export them. Use Majestic and place the exact URL to find out the sites that are linking to it. Then, on your prospecting list, add any quality or relevant sites that you can also use.

In Conclusion

While competitor analysis can take a lot of time and may be a bit difficult, doing this is necessary as this will help you know if you are measuring up against your rivals. This will also determine if your findings work for your audience or not, get their influencers to build your own content, and know content gaps that you may need to fix on.

Know more on how you can examine your competitors content and how this can help your business by calling us at 0203 823 9033 or use our contact form or read more on our full seo service here.

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3 Tips for Making Valuable Content

3 Tips for Making Valuable Content

A good website must have valuable content that offers your audience the best possible experience. Content must be original and useful. When your target audience finds your content inspiring or informative, there’s a chance that they will return to your website or share your content with other people. Your original content is what attracts people to your blog.

Tip #1: Analyze your Target Audience’s Needs

Brands must be able to identify information that meets the needs of the target audience. Start this by looking at current data and customer feedback. For example, if a flower store owner gets plenty of questions on social media about flowers in season; it may be a good idea to create an informative blog post about the availability of flowers during a specific season like spring. Content must not only be useful and informative but also timely. Given the earlier example, it would not be wise to post about summer flowers during autumn. This will translate to confusion and visitors might start looking for a product they will not be able to buy.

Similarly, if data shows that most site visitors look at a particular product but do not purchase, then the content manager may want to provide a detailed description to create a better lead-in. Related to needs analysis would be ensuring that future content will be engaging. A website that connects with its audience will more likely create a solid following.

Tip #2: Use Different Methods for Presenting Content
Most content marketing strategies employ blogging as an important way to promote content. It may be prudent to look for new ways to present the same topic in different ways. An easy way to extend discussion about a certain topic would be repurposing it for different social media channels. For instance, if a yoga instructor notices that a blog post about “workout clothes” is trending, then the same information can be presented in something more visual – infographics and videos appeal to a lot of people.


Visual content often performs better than text-based content especially when shared on social media. If you need to present a lengthy article, make sure to break it up with related images. Recreating the same topics and presenting it differently will also ease the burden of having to constantly brainstorm original content. You can offer the same information more than once by coming up with unique ways of presenting it.

Tip#3: Use Clear and Concise Titles

When creating content, it might be necessary to present it with a concise heading. It is very appealing to use long clever titles, but it is more important to ensure that the title will be able to summarize what the content will be all about. Avoid generic titles as well. A vague blog title like “Dog Training for Beginners” will not appeal because the idea being offered is too generic. Users might click on the link and be disappointed because they expected something else. Worse, they might not even click on it at all.

As a comparison, a well-versed title like “5 tips to potty training your puppy” will allow users to have an idea what the full blog will be like. Concise beats clever because it can bring out the important keywords. It will also be easier for your audience to find specific information on your website. This can lower your bounce rate, meaning it will be more likely for visitors to stay and explore your content.

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4 Ways to Keep Creative for Content Marketers

4 Ways to Keep Creative for Content Marketers

Content Marketing can be difficult because of the need to continuously create original ideas and content. To keep generating quality content, you must ensure that your work values originality and high levels of user engagement. This gets even harder with search algorithm changes that transformed the way quality signals are viewed. Technicalities aside, content marketers must keep finding creative ways to deliver a meaningful user experience on websites.

With standards for creating quality content on the rise, brainstorming or ideation is one of the best ways to remain inspired. Reduce the time you spend on looking at the blinking cursor of your blank computer screen by following these four brainstorming tips:

1. Make Use of Keyword Research

Content creation must always start by assessing at the important keywords for your business or client. Select up to five keywords that best describe the information you offer on your website. These are the same search terms that will enable the company or individual to improve their visibility and rank in search engine result pages. When you are stuck in a lackluster content idea, identify the relevant keywords for that idea and identify other variations of these terms. This way, you can find other questions or queries associated with your content. You can then figure out new content ideas and narrow down your focus on new topics. The best tool that will help you with keyword research is Google’s ‘Keyword Planner’. It is an easy-to-use tool for generating new keyword ideas. It can provide you help in finding a new direction for your content.

Make Use of Keyword Research

For example, start with a basic search for your keywords like “family holidays”. Keyword planner will suggest various ad groups and you can encounter potential high volume keyword opportunities. From something generic, you can determine other content specialization like “dog friendly holidays”,  “luxury beach holidays”, or “unusual family holidays”. These new keyword ideas can be used as prompts for new topics. They can also introduce you to other potential concepts that might fit your client’s branding. You can also use other keyword research tools like Word Tracker or Keywordini to help you come up with keyword suggestions for a specific industry or sector. These tools assist you by filtering the keyword terms by “question” which will provide you awareness about the kind of queries asked that are related to your keywords.

2. Be inspired by your competitors

The best content strategy not only makes use of relevant keywords but also looks at other businesses that utilize the same content pool. Research how the competitors produce their content. It is very important to identify other companies or individuals who are ranking against you with the same key terms. Studying them might even give you inspiration by glancing at the topics they have already written. You can also learn what type of content performed better than others. List down a number of competitors and try using services like BuzzSumo to discover what are their popular content and who are the influencers that drives their visibility for their audience. The Content Research Tool will crawl all the pages and content on the website and rank each page by the number of social media shares (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) so you don’t have to manually do these on your own. You can also use this content strategy tool to discover trending content in your industry or niche.

If that doesn’t get you brainstorming, you can try checking the backlink profiles of your competition. Checker tools such as Backlink Watch will find out where the company or person is getting their inbound links. This is time-consuming and requires a bit of sleuthing on your end, but by doing so you can find what social media campaigns worked best. You can also learn more about successful content like articles, blogs, or infographics that have performed well.

3. Collect inspiring content pieces

Media technology illustration with mobile phone and icons

It’s true that social media can cause information overload. Sometimes there are rubbish articles and spam material that are thrown in our faces. But, there are occasional content that provide meaningful value you deem worthy of a like, a share, or even a bookmark. These pieces of content must not be piled over by status messages only to be vaguely recalled as “that blog I read last week about…” Collect online content that made you stop and read. Whether you collect them as URLs or save them as images or screenshots, keep them organized in a file or folder that will be easy to access. Creative teams use software like Mural for online collaboration. Keeping track of these may provide you with inspiration that can be used when you’re running out of new ideas or burning out due to mental exhaustion.

4. Set Your Editorial Calendar

An editorial calendar is an essential tool that will contribute to the success of your content strategy. A calendar sets clear deadlines and serves as a reminder to constantly release content. Depending on whether you have a long term or short term strategy, a well-planned calendar will highlight important industry dates, events and occasions. The pressure of riding on these trends and being seen and heard will improve your brainstorming session. Given that competitors will likely be planning similar strategies, you can use all these 4 tips together to start with a fresh point-of-view and create unique content. An editorial calendar will help you plan large and small pieces of content and cycle through your client’s or your industry’s key areas of focus.

Generating timely and meaningful content is not always easy. In the same way, it is not easy to get inspired on command. There are content strategies that must be planned weeks or months prior to release in order to implement properly. Keep your mind active and ready for creating valuable content. Following these 4 tips should offer you with a different perspective for content ideation for your content strategy.

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