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Why Magnetic Content is an Inevitable Part of Your Content Strategy

You already know content is at the heart of your SEO strategy.

In the past, due to many SEO loopholes, it was commonplace to optimize a page with very low quality, filler content and still manage to get it ranking high.

I think everyone will agree with me it’s harder to do that now.

Here are a few facts regarding SEO that are cause for concern:

1. Google owns a monopoly on search (some say as much as 90% of all searches are done through Google). So if you put all your eggs in the SEO basket, you’re basically putting ALL of them in the Google basket. One company controls all your traffic and that one company can take it away.

2. Google is aggressively penalizing sites for link building practices that manipulate their algorithm (which is most all link building just for the sake of building links). So if you manufacture the majority of the links coming to your site expect to see your rankings drop as they get more sophisticated at figuring this out.

Solutions

Here are another set of things to think about that will lead to a solution for BOTH these major issues:

Links on Highly Trafficked Sites Bring You Traffic

Make no mistake, there are plenty of sites online receiving an absolute ton of traffic. Many of these sites actively link out to other sites.

You can wind up with a lot of direct traffic if they link back to your site.

As proof, many blogging experts recommend you guest blog your heart out to get links like these. That way you’ll get a link and you’ll get some traffic too.

Guest blogging is fine (it definitely works when done right).

But the reality is guest blogging means you need A LOT of high quality content.

And you have to give it away. 

This is content you might like to keep for your site, but to get a link from the site with all the traffic, you have to let them have it.

In the end, you have to produce a lot of content to get traffic from this method. You still need some content for your own site (to keep your own readers happy) and you need a lot of really good content for other people’s sites (to get readers in the first place).

It works, but here are a couple of things to think about …

  • What if you could get links from sites like these without needing to write a special piece of content just for them?
  • What if you could get highly trafficked sites to link right to content on your site?

As you can imagine, that’s a pretty big short-cut.

Here’s another thing to think about …

Visitors Will Share Good Content

Visitors will help spread the word about your content (and your site) if they like it.

This is called word-of-mouth or referral marketing and it’s been around forever.

The nice thing is it’s even easier to share stuff now that social media has taken hold. People with a Facebook or Twitter account can spread the word about your content with just a click of a button.

Magnetic Content = Visitor Sharing + Links on Highly Trafficked Sites

There are certain types of content I call Magnetic Content that results in sites with traffic linking to yours and results in more sharing from your visitors.

If you can accomplish this that means you get direct traffic outside the search engines.

This is major.

Your traffic is now coming from other sites linking to you. It also comes from visitors passing around links to your content.

Now you’re not just getting traffic from Google, you’re getting traffic from outside sources too.

You’ve diversified.

Creating Magnetic Content makes issue #1 less of a big deal. Again problem number one is that Google currently owns a monopoly on search. If you’ve got good rankings and a ton of traffic coming in through Google and they pull the plug on those rankings all your traffic will vanish.

You don’t want that.

You want to build a steady stream of traffic that is not reliant on one source. So diversifying is crucial.

It’s hard to learn PPC marketing, PPV marketing, video marketing, banner advertising, and all these other  traffic generation methods.

But with Magnetic Content we can optimize content for the search engines and we can gain traffic from other sources too (other sites with traffic to share and visitor referrals).

That’s all with one piece of content. That content is working hard for us and helps diversify our traffic without forcing us to learn new, traffic tactics in order to get traffic from outside the search engines.

Magnetic Content also takes care of issue # 2. That’s where Google has gotten crazy busting people for what they consider “bad” link building.  If you’ve got great, useful content on your site that others are linking to you don’t need to pay for links. You don’t need to spend your time on tactics Google doesn’t want you doing (plus it costs a small fortune and is mind numbingly boring).

Instead, you produce Magnetic Content and that helps you attract links.

Again, these aren’t just manufactured links from a blog network with no real visitors that will do absolutely nothing for your traffic.

These are real links from real sites who have visitors to share.  You’ll gain traffic directly from these links. Plus you’re building the best links you can (by any search engine’s standards).

These are links given by merit.  Links that are given because you actually have something relevant and cool on your site.

So this is the ultimate shortcut. The ultimate way to leverage your time.

There’s actually one other benefit. Magnetic Content encourages action from your readers. You’re giving them awesome free stuff and that elevates you above competitors who don’t know how to create worthwhile content.

That means your visitors will be more likely to sign up to your email newsletters, to buy your products and services, and to see you as a trusted resource. This is an incredible bonus for the creation of a single piece of Magnetic Content.

What if all the content you publish is Magnetic? Can you imagine the steady stream of traffic you would create for your online business and what that means for your income?

It’s possible to phase out the low quality, relatively useless content you may have been creating in the past and only focus on the production of Magnetic Content. In that case it’s likely you’ll find yourself spending the same amount of time (or money if you’re hiring freelance writers) and see better results with far less content.

Contrasting Method …

You create low quality, sub-par, or average content that doesn’t solve your visitors real problems.  You optimize it just right for keyphrases people are searching for. You then go out and manufacture a bunch of links to that content. These links don’t bring in any traffic, but after enough of them, they do boost your rankings.

So you wind up with traffic from the search engines.

Google adjusts their algorithm or you get a manual penalty (because it takes a member of Google’s web spam team about 5 seconds to see that you’ve got marginal content on your site that is only ranking high because you faked their algorithm out with manufactured links) and you lose most of your rankings along with your traffic..

Let’s take stock of what you have:

  • You now have a site with next to no traffic.
  • You have a bunch of low quality articles that no one wants to link to or share.

Where do you even go from there?

Basically you have to start over. The articles are worthless. The site is worthless.

The links you got are worse than worthless. In fact, they’ve damaged your rankings (which was your ONLY source of traffic). You’d have to actually do work to get rid of those links.  After you remove the links manually, use the Google disavow tool, or buy a new domain you can start over.

Completely. From. Scratch.

And if you don’t change how you do things, you can probably expect the cycle to repeat itself.

If I’ve hit home with this I’m not saying it’s fair, but it’s reality now.  It’s just how it works.  From where I sit there’s no point crying about it, but there is a point in doing something about it.

The Alternative …

You write Magnetic Content.

You optimize it for the search engines around keyphrases people search for. You tell sites in your market about your content.

  • Some of them tell their readers about it by linking to it. You get direct traffic from them sharing your interesting content.
  • Some of their readers share it. You get direct traffic from them referring it.

You also get a boost in your search engine rankings from the links.

Google updates their algorithm. In all likelihood, you still keep your rankings because you were not ranking based on a loophole in the algorithm.

Let’s take stock of what you have:

  • You have awesome, useful content that will keep working for you through visitor referrals; month after month, year after year.
  • You have links from sites with real traffic that will keep bringing you traffic; month after month, year after year.
  • You have high search engine rankings.

No one can guarantee high search engine rankings forever, but you have a better chance of keeping them with this strategy. If you did lose those rankings, you still have traffic coming in from other sources.

Plus you’ve really impressed your visitors, many of whom want to hear more from you so they sign up to your newsletter or any social media platforms you’re a part of to stay in touch.

Now you have another source of traffic (your list and your social media platforms).

Things to think about.

Which method do you choose?

About Lisa Parmley

is the founder of BusinessBolts.com and creator of the InlineSEO System, Authority Site Model, and Magnetic Content Series. She started her online publishing company in 2001. Her focus is on helping entrepreneurs grow their online business by making an positive impact.

Comments

  1. Paul Warner says:

    A very well written article as I had not heard of, or did not know what magnetic content is and the importance it plays in the development of a site. I am very interested in learning how this is actually done in comparison to what might be considered normal content, that is if somebody doesn’t know a thing about magnetic content. I hope you write more on this, as soon I will be writing content for a site I want to develop, and it would be nice to have a jump on how to correctly do this so that I don’t waste time writing content incorrectly.
    Thank you as always Lisa, Paul

  2. Jon says:

    Interesting topic. Personally I have always avoided link building schemes on the premise that any site linking to mine that didn’t do it voluntarily is not worth having – plus I’ve seen so many negative reports that seem to confirm my thoughts. Danny Iny and others promote guest blogging but I agree with your thoughts that this is very time consuming. Googling Magnetic Content brings up 123 million results so it’s obviously topical. Look forward to seeing your future posts on this topic. One platform I find useful for traffic and quality links to my niche sites is IBO (http://southernaffiliate.com/IBO) where you can publish two posts per day linking back to your site so would value your thoughts on that and similar platforms.

    • Admin says:

      Hello Jon,

      I call it Magnetic Content, but it’s also known as Link Bait and sometimes I also say Authority Content.

      I cannot comment on the platform you’re talking about in the comment as I have never used it or heard of it and visited the site, but still have no idea what it does.

      All the best … Lisa

  3. Nobody can agree more on that than me! :)

    That’s my exact strategy since 5 months now. I trashed all my “old-fashioned” sites to focus on one (and now two) new sites using this “blueprint”…

    And you know what? That’s the first real successful website I built…
    In fact, I started to see success when I stopped creating websites, and started creating communities…

    I didn’t build a single “forced” backlink to this site… None.
    But I have a real Facebook Fan base and almost 2.5K subscribers. And of course that’s growing every single day.

    Yes, it takes work, but it’s a valuable and interesting work. Not like building dumb back links.
    Well, I always hated building backlinks… :)

    I follow Lisa since 2009 and always feel that this is the way I want to do things.
    Treating “websites” like a real business, not a collection of useless articles.

    Thanks for sharing,
    Greg

  4. Mike FD says:

    Thanks for that Lisa, a well written and succinct presentation of the wisdom of doing things “the right way”.

    Having been sucked into the short cut mentality because I didn’t know any better, and using the software shortcut as well (although I now realise there is good and bad software!), I can see the brittleness of the “cutting corners” approach. With Google involved it is too easy to get the speed wobbles and crash.

    So I am currently building an authority site. It is being built a bit slower than I would like because I have other commitments, but it is a site I am filling with what I hope people will judge as good content. I have plans to use the approach you describe above, and monetise in a sensible fashion.

    I have come from the corporate world and one of the things that I have come to realise is that on-line or off-line your “clients” are the same – a.k.a people! Let’s face it good service is the key – helping people get the information and products they are in need of.

    I appreciate your solidly based advice, so thank you very much,

    Cheers,

    Mike FD

  5. Owen says:

    Some great advice here. I like the idea of creating magnetic content, rather than doing all that other stuff.
    Looking forward to more on magnetic content.

  6. Erick says:

    There is no better solution to building a long term successful business online than producing content and video that your visitors will gain value from. All other shortcuts will only lead to short term gains at best. If you want to build a long term business online, you will have to work at it. However in the end, the reward is well worth it.

    Excellent article Lisa and as always, the best advice.

    Thanks

  7. mitz says:

    Hi Lisa
    I have been in this game for ages!!! And I built my sites on “magnetic content”… I was in a bubble for a few years… Then I found guest posting… Mind you my sites were already successful but when guest posting the traffic you do get is awesome and earns money…I have spikes in my earnings directly from guest posting so you could say I get paid for that content…
    Even better when you make a sale that is recurring as the guest post has the importunity to make more and more.. The only problem I see with this is that because the content is not on my site I cannot update it and keep it evergreen. That sucks…

    I have thought about this long and hard…Should I keep guest posting or should I create better content, well the best??? The problem is you can create great content and hope for the viral surge but sometimes it does not happen..even if you push it…

    • Admin says:

      Doing both is best. Maybe try for better content on your site + some guest posting (you could do a little less than where you’re at now).

      I’m not talking about viral content really. Just the type of content people find useful and will link to you for. So instead of having to write content for other site owners like you’re doing with writing guest posts, they link to you without an entire article. Not everyone will do this so for those sites in your market you’d have to write a full piece of content for them.

  8. Joe says:

    Hello Lisa
    How do I get the same kind of traffic if I’m an amazon affiliate with review sites that contain excellent reviews of at least 1000 words and the site also has other articles which give additional info on the physical products that I’m promoting.

    Why would anyone wish to link with me and how would i do it.
    Your article on Magnetic content is excellent and I thank you most sincerely for all the freebies you constantly give to all of us.

    • Admin says:

      Hi Joe,

      You’ll have to have more than just review articles and I’ll show you the type of content that works for this. So you wouldn’t just want to build a review only site, but one with the reviews + some substance in the market.

      All the best …

      Lisa

  9. Loz James says:

    Hi Lisa

    I like your post and am looking forward to the future content on this – but the idea that if you ‘build it they will come’ just does not work for all content, all the time in all niches. It would be great to think we could spend all day creating the most authoritative blog post ever written about XYZ – and that people would be drawn to it magnetically above the noise of the rest of the Internet – but in reality it just doesn’t work like this enough of the time without promoting the content often quite aggressively.

    Isn’t it better to write 10 ‘blow-your-readers’-minds’ amazing pieces of content – then spend the rest of your time connecting with bloggers and industry experts to get the word out on what you’ve produced? I’m not talking about link building obviously – or even guest blogging necessarily – but actually connecting with thought leaders in your niche and alerting them to your amazing content?

    Naturally, this takes a huge amount of time and resources to do properly – but not many commentators out there will actually give you the nuts and bolts of exactly how to do it. The secret to success with this is just good old fashioned networking and hard work – but even with that it takes far longer to see results than the older methods of link building based SEO.

    I’m looking forward to your series because people are crying out for actionable guidance on how to produce great content – and equally importantly, information on how to promote it. In my experience I can’t see one working without the other though.

    Cheers

    Loz

    • Admin says:

      Hello Loz, the ‘build it and they will come’ mentality does not work for any content. You will still have to promote Magnetic Content. The difference is you can promote ‘average’ content 10x as much as valuable, useful content (Magnetic Content) and you still won’t see anywhere near the same results. That’s because not one’s going to be fooled by it. Real people aren’t going to link to it and no one will want to share it. So you almost have no choice if you want to get anywhere but to create something valuable and from there then connect with people in your market.

      Guest blogging works great and I recommend it, but you’ll have to create new content just for your guest post (and many top bloggers aren’t going to let you post anything unless it’s awesome) and you still have to hassle them for the opportunity (because they see it as them doing you a favor). That’s kind of crazy if you think about it and I’m showing you a different way (but if you can do both that’s great).

  10. dennis says:

    Hello Lisa, I have build many of websites, and the one thing that I have learn from you is how content needs to be write, if you want to keep your readers coming back. So with my tops sites I have changes the way I write my content now, and my bonces rate has gone down big time. As you know content will always be king. great article. You alway write content the way it should be. Please keep me posted. Thanks Dennis.

  11. Dr. Nicki says:

    Lisa –
    Very much enjoyed this post.
    It just seemed to flow! :)
    I am about to go through your InlineSEO training and very, very excited!
    Love your clear, no nonsense, carefully skilled approach.

    Thank you,
    Dr. Nicki

  12. Andrea says:

    I guess it is all about getting real visitors from real sites. Good point. If you concentrate on the real reasons you started your www life – and i guess that would be getting and spreading information, discussion or simply writing – you will reach people. Magnetic content is a wonderful expression :) Thanks and great post by the way!

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