I read a lot of articles about the “secret” to driving traffic to your website and ranking well in the search engines. Nine out of ten times, and probably within the first paragraph, you’ll find the parroted phrase “Content is king!” I roll my eyes whenever I see it, I can’t help it. Is it true? Yes, it is, but as many of you probably already know, it’s just not that simple.
Many nonprofits, especially smaller ones, usually employ a few people who do many things. Over the course of a day an executive director wears many hats, probably with a focus on building relationships and fundraising. Writing blog articles and site content takes more man hours than you might think, and for that reason it often gets put on hold.
The typical alternative to this “when we have time” method of content creation is to either hire a writer in house or purchase content, which isn’t cheap. What you may not realize is there are low cost or no cost alternatives to sitting down in front of that proverbial type writer to produce enough content to be king. Here are a few ideas that might help.
Ask someone to write content for you. The ideal choice is someone who writes because they want to share their views and opinions with the world. You can find writers on Google. Search for articles that will interest your constituents, a collection of writings that share your vision.
Once you find the content, ask permission to use it. Create an email you can use whenever you need it. Explain who you are, talk about the focus of your nonprofit. It’s important to convey passion for what you do. If it comes across to someone with the same passion, they’re more likely to give their permission. Let them know the article will be clearly sourced with a link back to the author’s homepage. Include a signature line with your contact information and a link to your website. Many authors may reject you or just not respond. Keep trying. You may be surprised at how generous people can be, especially when dealing with a nonprofit.
Another option is to provide a form on your site asking for guest bloggers. If you have a large constituent base, aligned with your cause, they may want to contribute their thoughts and ideas. You can also use websites like My Blog Guest to connect with writers seeking opportunities to write guest posts at no cost to you.
Remember, content doesn’t only need to be written. Video is quickly becoming the most popular way to share ideas and information. Consider running a contest where you give away an iPad for the best video with stories about your cause. For a few hundred dollars you’ll be motivating your community to create great content for you.
There are many strategies out there for generating the content you need to drive visitors to your site. Try one or more of these and you may find your search engine rankings climbing faster than you thought.