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The Drumbeat of the Internet and the Rebirth of the Mom-and-Pop Store

by Steve Scott | Join Him On Facebook

Drumbeat of the internet-Create Quality ContentFollowing Google Panda there has been a continuous drumbeat heard ‘round the ‘net.

The drumbeat sounds like this:

Ba dum bum bum

Create

ba ba bum bum bum

Quality

be ba bum bum bum

Content

tiki tiki boom

Over and over you hear it.

Create Quality Content.  Create Quality Content. Content is King.  Content Matters. Create Quality Content!!!

Are you sick of it yet?

Well…  not me.  That drumbeat is like sweet music to my ears.

I have long been a fan of writing stuff that matters.  Not simply fluff, but detailed posts that I like to call MVP (Massive Value Posts).

Now, I am not going to try and sell you a bill of goods saying that every article I have written is a homerun or manna from heaven.  That would be ridiculous.  But I take my shot at making most posts actionable and detailed.  I may fail, but I try my best to make this quality content.

I think you all should too!

I love the idea of creating something valuable and then giving it away.

In Affiliate Marketing, the ultimate goal is to make sales, but I believe that rather than beating people over the head with stuff you are selling I think it is important to build trust.

The Startling Re-Birth of the Mom-and-Pop store

Once upon a time you went to your local hardware store.  You chatted with the guy behind the counter.  He knew you.  When you bought tools for gardening, he might give you a few gardening tips.  Like how to plant lavender.  The guy behind the counter might mention a special they were having next week.  He wanted your business, but he also cared about YOU.

Then Home Depot arrived. This giant store has everything you could possibly want but is incredibly impersonal.

The Internet is simply Home Depot on steroids.  You can get anything but the personal factor is gone.

This is where that “trust” and “quality” comes in.  You can be that Mom-and-Pop store.

With quality articles, social media connection and giving away a lot of quality “free stuff” you build that trust level.  When Joe Shopper arrives at your site, you not only sell him the digital claw hammer and nails.  You make sure he has a few tips for building that deck he has planned.

That, my friends, is quality.

Joe Shopper will be back, and he may bring friends.

And that is why I love the current drumbeat of “Create Quality Content”

I want to be the mom-and-pop hardware store.  Not the Home Depot.

At the Mom-and-Pop Internet Stop, we get personal.  You try to anticipate your client’s needs.  You try to give them valuable free content and take steps to connect with them (at least casually) on a one-to-one basis.  You do not have to have your customers, “over to dinner,”  but you should know their first name and strive to treat them as more than a number.

It all starts with creating quality content they can use.  Not simply selling them products.

Quality Content

So what is Quality Content?

First off quality is subjective.  What I find to be quality you may not.

My personal benchmark is: Does the post/article teach you something?

You see “Top 5 Tips to Creating Quality Content” posts you everywhere these days.

Let’s face it, unless you are brand new: they will not teach you anything.

For someone starting out, those posts can be high quality, but for the rest of us, they may seem like derivative drivel.

Since Saturday is my round-up –slash- essay day, and my essay is done, let’s get to some examples of quality content.

As you know from my MVP’s, often the stuff I write is long and in depth for me to personally assume it is “quality.”

Quality does not need to be long.  Kim wrote an article I consider to be perfect quality.  She addressed those annoying “auto-play” video and audio sites.  She links a FireFox plug-in that stops the audio and video in their tracks.

To me that was perfect quality.  It brought up an issue.  It solved an issue.  Short and sweet.

A quality post can even go over things you know and reinforce them.  Lisa had a post that pointed out the importance of scheduling posts.  This is something I always do.  In fact it was the way only way I was able to post every day while traveling in Europe for 6 months.  Even now, most posts you read on SSS (with the exception of the “Saturday” posts) were written 6-10 days prior to publication.

Then you have Robert’s post this week.  He asked the question, “How Long Should a Blog Post be” and succinctly made his point.

Time is a valuable commodity too. Writing posts that save people time can also be quality content.

My essays/round-ups are perhaps too long-winded to really be considered a “time-saver” but as an example, Kristi does a great round-up every Friday that is an excellent resource for all of the topics you may have missed.

Turning people on to other bloggers is another way to create quality.  Rob did a post of up-and-coming internet marketing bloggers.  I may be biased as to this posts quality, since he was kind enough to include me on this list.  But I think this was also a great example of quality.  Hopefully turning people on to some great bloggers.

The Goal of Quality Content.

The goal of quality content is twofold.  Of course the main thrust is to get your readers to read it.  You want to provide that value.

But it is also to get it mentioned again. You want retweets, comments, Diggs, Stumbles, Facebook “likes”. You want your post to go viral.  Or at least as Tristan classically put it in his historic (to me) Info graphic, at least you want to go bacterial.  Your real goal is to get mentioned again and again on posts this to expand your reach and hopefully find new followers.

The ways you do this is by making your quality content also linkbait or traffic magnets, and of course having that snappy title.

Ana gives some great examples of topics (and things you can do) that can make truly quality in what she calls blog traffic magnets.

Zarko gives an excellent and clear explanation of the type of article you can write that in addition to being “quality” will also serve as link-bait.

As a final example of linkbait, Michael talks about actual bait.  He talks about steps he used/could use to build actual linkbait (quality) articles in the “Online Fish and Aquarium” Niche.  It is interesting to see just how many great ideas there really are in this fairly narrow niche. LinkBait and Content Marketing.

As a final (and mercifully quick) note, an important part of creating these articles that get shared like wildfire is the titles.  I will admit I am sometimes poor at this.  If you want to see good headlines check out some tabloids.  The stories themselves may be crap, but the headlines are copywriting gold.

The all-time best was the Classic NY Post headline, “Headless Body found in Topless Bar

But I digress

If you want to see great internet headlines in “our” neck of the woods, check out Alex at Build Rank Profit (BuRP).  Alex is a great writer.  He has many quality posts.  But when it comes to titles, the guy is a pure genius.

Since I mentioned Alex, let me do a second of shameless self-promotion.  I have a guest post currently up on his site right now. If you want to read it it will show you how to make money with free traffic.

In fact, let me even go a little bit farther into self promotion. Last week in a guest post I talked about creating an eBook out of your existing material.  Well I took my own advice rewrote/repurposed some content into an eBook for you all. Create a Profit Pulling EBook Empire is now available for free to you.

This is not, “give me your name” free.  This is click the button and get it free.  All I ask is for you to hit that tweet button, Facebook “like” it, and all those goodies.  In other words.  Help spread the word…

Believe it or not, this is only about half of what had planned to talk about.  I think I got a little wordier than I thought I was going to.  Rather than burdening you with another three thousand word Saturday post.  I will just quit now and consider myself, “ahead”.

Get out and Enjoy your Memorial day weekend.  At least those of you in countries that celebrate it.  Regardless, get out and enjoy your weekend.  I know I will.

Take Action. Get Results.



{ 21 comments }

Jane@Blogging Tips

Hey Steve,

Great collection around the “quality content” theme. BTW the link to Ana’s post points to friendlyblogger, you might wanna check it out. And, Alex is really great with titles and niche sites 🙂

Cheers,
Jane.

Steve Scott

Thanks Jane,

It was a guest post Ana did. But I grabbed the wrong one from my notes. I appreciate the heads up! 🙂

Stella @Massive Article Traffic

Steve, thanks for this round up. I like the way you did your round up – story style, one theme (focused) and using the ‘best of the web’ you discovered as examples to drive the point home.

Thanks, I love reading your posts because they are very detailed and actionable – complete posts that don’t require looking for an extra puzzle piece to implement a subject at hand.

Good job!

Steve Scott

Thanks Stella!

I appreciate that. I put a fair amount of effort to make these more than just a list of posts.

Sometimes it means posts I liked don’t get mentioned. But it also gives me a chance to try to be a little creative and “riff”

I am really glad you ike it. thanks for the great positive comment. Appreciated!

John Mak

Steve, that’s a good post and I mean it! I just want to add that for me there is not such thing as a “quality post”. There are so many rules and so many different opinions. For me content must be simple, not a rewrite neither duplicate. I was reading a blog post the other day with tips about writing a better content and with quality. He had too many mistakes and duplicate content in his own guidelines, I didn’t know what to say… Just keep it simple and relevant.
Thank you for sharing.

Steve@Internet Lifestyle

John,

You are right. There is no such thing as a “qaulity” post. It is a very subjective term.

Like you said there are some easy ways to say a post is “bad” duplicate, tons of grammatical and spelling errors (1-2 are fine in my book), factual errors and stuff like that are what bug me.

I DO think there is a way to make articles that “tend” to be ones that many people will think are “quality”

Thanks for the comment!

Have a great day!

Alex@build amazon sites

Great post Steve, and this post is another example of quality, with a well constructed arguement supported by relevant examples and references.

Quality is really where it all begins, it’s also something I have spoken fervently about recently.

THanks so much for the kudos Steve, really means a lot coming from you, although now I have to make sure all my titles are awesome from now on LOL.
No pressure now…

Steve@Internet Lifestyle

Thanks Alex,

I was worried I came off a little “preachy”. Saturdays are the times I let myself “riff” off of….whatever.

I am sure you can handle the pressure, bro! 🙂

Now make some hot titles and don’t let me down!

Patricia@lavenderuses

HI Steve

What a nice surprise (Sunday morning here now) to see the lovely lavender getting a shout out 🙂 Thanks

And I so agree with you. With limited time while I get a new site up and running, have to say yours is one of the few blogs I still regularly visit as there is always quality content and things for me to learn.

And Alex does great headlines doesn’t he. And I don’t think you sounded “preachy” just calling it as you see it 🙂

Patricia Perth Australia

Vitaly Tennant

Great post Alex,
Many people tend to write for the keywords to attract traffic, but when you come to think of it … if you’re writing for the keywords then your focus is shifted and that content doesn’t seem “natural” and isn’t coming from you in a way.
I totally agree that quality content is what stands out and builds the relationship between the blogger and reader.

Joe

I agree with Vitaly on this. Writing just for keywords is a losing game. It never actually works out the way you think it should, and you just end up compromising your content. It’s better to simply focus on good quality content that people will find useful, and the rest will follow organically.

Steve@Internet Lifestyle

Thanks Patricia!

I am certainly looking forward to your new niche! 🙂

-S

Edgar

For new people that are still skeptic about the quality content effect on online success, i have a funny story to tell.
The first blog which i created about something i’m interested in without any blogging, marketing or SEO knowledge, still gets more traffic than the ones i’ve created after i learned online marketing. So this is a proof about what you’re saying Steve. Thanks

Steve Scott

Edgar,

I have seen some of the same thing. Some of my oldest article marketing posts I went into deep detail. As time progressed I found that you could raise CTR with shorter articles that didn’t say as much.

While CTR is higher on some of the short ones, they did not stand the test of time, where some of those old articles still get hundreds of visitors a day.

Thanks for sharing your experience!!

lesley

Steve, your roundup is always good, but this one was also a boost. I seem to be surrounded by people complaining about Google’s update, but like you I think of it in positive terms. As long as you keep writing quality content (and I try) you don’t have to worry about changes in the Google algorithm, Google is changing to help you rank, rather than hinder.

Steve Scott

Lesley,

I had -some- articles that took a ‘ding’ with Panda… no doubt about it.

Longterm, though, I see the push they are making and it will help the people who take a real effort to provide that good content.

I can’t say I am NEVER susceptible to worrying over the minute ups and downs of things like the Panda update. But really the important thing should always be to look longterm.

A good lesson I learned early on.

-S

Gail Gardner @ Niche Blogging

Hi Steve,

Thanks for including Ana’s guest post on my blog. The trackback tipped me off to come and visit your blog again. We seem to be on very similar pages regarding where bloggers are going. I would love to collaborate with you if you’re interested. Twitter, Skype and Yahoo IM are the fastest ways to connect with me.

Matthew Needham

Steve,

I think this is an excellent way to look at things. You’re right internet businesses that stand out need to give the “mom and pop” service we have lost.

Matthew

Mark@copywriting

It’s really nice of you to share things about how to make money online. This is a great blog!

Rob Cubbon@Shared Host WordPress

I’m glad you saw the article on my favorite internet marketing bloggers, Steve, and thanks for the link and the tweet. I agree with you about Alex Whalley, he is a great writer. There are many good links and post type ideas here. Thank you.

Steve Scott

Thanks Rob! I appreciate the comment!

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