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#069 Content Marketing VIP Newsletter
"Great content isn’t stumbled upon, it’s carefully designed for a specific goal." – Nic Evans (Content Strategy Lead at Shopify).
🎯 Actionable Insights
💡 1. How MasterClass Used SEO To Build A $2.7B Empire
📌 Before we dive into this, make sure to subscribe to MarketingExamined for more SEO strategy breakdowns.
Let’s get started.
If you’ve spent a minute on Youtube, you’ve probably seen a Masterclass ad that hooked you and made you consider taking a cooking class with Gordon Ramsey.
But did you know Masterclass is valued at $2.7B while dominating SEO:
11.2M Monthly Visits
$4.4M (Monthly Organic Traffic Value)
601K Backlinks from 49.3K Referring Domains
This makes organic search their number one source of traffic.
And they optimize this traffic by understanding search intent and linking to specific products that match the TOF problem.
Let’s run through this in 3 minutes.
1/ How To Understand Search Intent
Search intent is the “why” behind any search query.
Every person who performs a search on Google is searching for one of four things:
1. Information - Here, people are searching for specific questions or want to dive into a certain topic.
2. Navigation - Here, people are searching for a specific website.
3. Transaction - People are searching for a specific product and already know what they're looking for.
4. Comparison - These people need more information or convincing but are looking to buy a product.
By understanding the “why” you can map out “how” to drive action.
Use this table to understand which keywords fuel the individual’s intent:
2/ Informational Intent Fuels Masterclasses’ Top Of Funnel Marketing (TOF)
A look at their top pages on Ahrefs shows that outside of their Home Page, every top page meets the informational intent of the user:
3/ How Masterclass Bridges Its TOF Efforts To Its Products
Masterclass bridges each article to a specific course, taught by a specific instructor, centered around the topic related to the information they were looking for.
Because the extension of the right information is the right product.
So, every information-dense article is linked to a scaled version of information — a Masterclass Course.
This journey just took a consumer from problem-aware to product-aware.
But they didn’t buy…
And here is where Masterclass retargets each individual across Youtube, Facebook, and Instagram with specific creative related to the course they showed initial interest in.
Here’s what it looks like:
You searched “Difference Between Egg Yolks and Egg Whites?”
You clicked the Masterclass article.
You clicked through to the Gordon Ramsey Cooking Course.
You didn’t buy
You get retargeted on Youtube, Facebook, and Instagram with different video ads specific to the Gordon Ramsey course.
Putting It All Together.
Here's a quick recap:
Search intent is the "why" behind every search
Each search satisfies one of four search intents
MasterClass creates thousands of articles centered around informational intent
These informational articles act as the bridge to the right product
This click-through is retargeted on other platforms with specific creative
If anything, the intent is everything.
💡 2. Lessons From The Top Performing Content of TheIndependent. co.uk (Study From Sistrix)
Sistrix did a study on the top-performing websites for searches for barbecues.
One of the top 25 websites in this competitive market was The Independent, a site that is well known for its product review content.
And one of the top-performing buying guides from The Independent is about ’best gas barbecues,' which ranks in the top 10 for almost 400 keywords.
Here are some of the characteristics that make this page successful (insights from Sistrix):
The website is a trust-worthy site as it ranks for most product reviews update
The author bio is linked to an individual author page
Yearly update with the latest fresh information
The product review guide demonstrates first-hand experience with the products
“There are clear scores & content that shows the article is offering an opinion, rather than just collating thoughts from other sites.”
There is a 'how we tested' section explaining the parameters & tests each model was put through.
Internal links to closely related articles which demonstrate the depth of knowledge & expertise of TheIndependent in the wider sector.
“There are a variety of recommendations & models for different use cases. This helps make the article relevant for a host of longer-tail ‘best barbecue’ queries as well as making the article more comprehensive (and more helpful) for generic queries.”
👉 Read the full study report on the top winning websites (by Sistrix)
💬 Bite-sized Insights
💡 1. Ask These 3 Questions To Boost Conversion of Your Website
On any page of the website, a user should clearly answer the following questions:
Where they are
Where they were
Where can they go
Let’s understand with an example:
Here’s a product category page of Bewakoof (eCommerce website):
As you can see, users will clearly understand the above points.
Where they are: Page title and URL help users to understand the purpose of the page
Where they were: Breadcrumbs at the top of the page
Where they can go: giving clear options to visit product pages and using filters
Make sure every stage of the website answer the above three questions
👉 Insights from Portent (Learn 8 other UX best practices)
💡 2. Should You Use Videos on your HomePage?
Using videos on your home page to explain the product is a good idea, BUT - most won't watch it.
On an average site, only ~10-15% of visitors watch the product video.
Hence the video should be supplemental to written copy, not a replacement for it.
👉 Insight from Peep Laja
🗓️ Learning Resources
💡 1. Free SEO Competitor Analysis Course by Sistrix
In SEO, you don't always need to reinvent the wheel. In-depth competitor analysis helps you find what's working and not working for your competitors.
In this free course (by Sistrix), you’ll learn the following:
What you’ll learn:
Finding key content competitors
Analyzing competitors (website structure, keywords, links, technology, & content formats)
Step-by-step example of competitor analysis
Get certified by Sistrix at no cost
Duration: 70 Minutes of video content (4 modules)
👉 Enroll in the competitor analysis course (free signup)
💡 2. Get the latest News From The SEO Industry
Want the latest SEO news?
Then check out this SEONewsPro, an SEO news aggregator — stories are cached every hour, so you can stay on top of your game.
👉 Bookmark SEONewsPro & Stay Updated With Latest SEO News
📹 Behind The Scene
I love reading non-fiction books. Some of my favourite topics are business, marketing, human psychology, etc.
Last read book: The Psychology of Money by Morgan Housel
What I am currently reading: Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely
Next books to read: Marketing Rebellion by Mark Schaefer
What was the last book you read? Have any book recommendations for me?
Reply to this email and let me know your book suggestions for me. And, I will reply with my favourite books 😇.