“What does it look like to work with your team?”
We get that question a lot.
Sometimes early in the sales process. Other times after a new client has signed on to work with us.
Either way, we realized that it’s time to peel back the curtain with a much more informative answer.
Today, we’re sharing the entire picture of what it looks like to work with Intergrowth to grow your business through our content marketing services.
We start by diving into the typical sales process, where we help prospects find the right solution for their business. We delve into the first two months of a new client relationship to build their growth strategy.
We then discuss the process and timeline for our content creation, link building, and ongoing reporting analysis. We wrap it up with an overview of the metrics that clients will regularly see from each service tier.
Intergrowth’s Sales Process
We don’t conduct any cold sales outreach. All of our current clients came to us by one of the following methods:
- Reaching out after reading content that our team has written
- Referrals from current/past clients
- Agency partnerships — we often partner with other marketing agencies to help them with SEO/content marketing
When a prospect reaches out to us, we start by validating whether we’re the right partner to help their team grow.
If someone is looking to 2x their site traffic in the next 12 months on a $1,500/month marketing budget, we won’t be the right partner for them. Rather than waste their time on a call, we can share our best do-it-yourself resources and try to connect them to someone else in our network that might be better able to help them.
Next, we look to hop on a 30-minute consultation call to learn more about their business.
What Do Our Consultation Calls Look Like?
We use this time to understand what this business defines as success in the next 3, 6, and 12 months.
We build out the high-level action plan to achieve those growth goals, whether working with our team for SEO-centric content marketing or using a different marketing approach.
If we believe that content marketing is the right approach for them to achieve their goals, we walk through our three main service tiers:
- Standard Growth Content Marketing
- Rapid Growth Content Marketing
- Enterprise Growth Content Marketing.
We treat all three of these as benchmarks.
Once we’ve identified the service tier that aligns with their budget and growth goals, we customize the service to ensure that it will drive success for their unique scenario.
Some prospects need time to think through our services to see if they can justify the budget; others give the verbal on that consultation call. Either way, once we’ve discussed the tier that makes the most sense, we set up a follow-up call to customize the service to drive results for their unique business scenario.
Building the Right Solution for a New Partner
Four articles and four links/month will be the perfect solution for some clients. Some clients may see better results by decreasing monthly articles and increasing monthly links.
Once we’ve built out the right solution, we solidify monthly pricing, the timing of kicking off services, and sign an agreement to get services up and running.
The First Two Months of a New Client Relationship
After a new client signs on with us, we kick off a dozen initiatives behind the scenes to prepare for the first month of service:
- We start identifying various content themes that might make sense to target for their site
- We start building their real-time reporting dashboard
- We start building their Growth Hub
- And more
From the new client’s perspective, we reach out to schedule our Discovery Call the day we sign the agreement.
Weeks 1-2 of a New Client Relationship: Discovery
We hold our Discovery call as early as possible into the new relationship. We use this time (typically one hour) to collect all of the information we need to know about our new partner to start growing their business.
We ask about everything from how they position themselves as being unique from their competitors to the best metrics to monitor to give them a straightforward way to assess growth over time.
We also pitch a wide range of content topics that we uncovered from our pre-call research on that call. Our goal is to get feedback on different directions we can take with our content strategy.
With most clients, we uncover enough great opportunities to get the first month of content topics approved on the call.
We then kick off four concurrent initiatives:
- Competitive Landscape Analysis
- Content Strategy
- Month one of content creation
- Month one of link building
Weeks 2-4: Competitive Landscape Analysis
During the discovery call, we gather info about direct competitors to our client (businesses offering a competing product/service). We then expand this by uncovering indirect competitors to our client (companies that outrank our client for the search themes that are most important for our client to rank in search engines for).
We then rate these competitors in terms of their threat to our client’s online business. We pick the top 2-3 competitors and do a deep dive analysis of their online presence.
We look at their backlink profile, traffic growth over time, top-performing pages on their site, frequency and depth of content publishing, and more. We then broaden the focus to identify the top-performing articles across all of the competitor sites that we uncovered to see which themes would be valuable for us to write for our client.
Once this is complete, we compile a walkthrough video summarizing key findings and elaborating on how the client’s entire team can leverage this analysis in future strategic decisions and send it off to the client.
Weeks 2-4: 3-Month Content Strategy
At the same time, we develop our content strategy report. We base our content strategy on tactics that work for our clients time and again.
Our content strategies involve the following elements:
- Understanding what kinds of content resonate with the competition’s audiences and looking at search volume trends to prioritize writing about those topics for the client’s site
- Analyzing what topics are popular in a client’s industry or niche as a whole
- Determining what types of content will establish the client as an authority in their industry (as understood by search engines)
This strategy moves clients ahead in rankings in three ways:
- The client starts outranking their competitors for education-centric topics that their customers search for every day.
- As they start ranking for more and more of these topics, we funnel some of that site authority that they build onto more valuable pages on their site, such as product and service pages.
- Each topic that the client’s site ranks for helps them rank higher for every other topic they’ve written about.
We dive deeper into that methodology here: how blogging drives sales
The report also includes our plan for the first three months of content creation. After finalizing that content plan with the client, we move on to the next step: content creation.
Weeks 1-4: Month One of Content Creation
After we get approval on our first month of content topics, our team starts writing.
Our team treats writing as a collaborative process.
- Our Head of Content, Jinny, takes the overarching topic and identifies the topic angle, target keywords, and more.
- The primary writer puts together an outline. The outline provides the skeleton of what the final article will look like. It also includes research for them to reference while writing.
- One of the editors reviews the outline, leaving questions for the writer to consider, thoughts on areas that we overlooked in the outline, and more.
- The writer takes this feedback and builds out the full-length article.
- The editor reviews the article. They start by ensuring that the article makes a clear argument, backs up data points with sources, and explains the topic clearly. The editor then takes the article through a smelling, grammar, and plagiarism check. The next step is to run a readability analysis to ensure that the article avoids complex terminology when simpler terms are available and is easily skimmable to keep readers engaged. The editor then takes the article through our entire search optimization process.
- A second editor goes through a higher-level review to ensure that the article explains the topic clearly and is easily digestible.
- Our team publishes the article on the client’s website and adds the live URL to the client’s Growth Hub.
- We take the newly-published article through our social promotion process to encourage hundreds of people in the client’s industry to share the article on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook.
Some clients get very involved in this content creation process, taking the time to share feedback on the overarching topic angle, outline, and final draft of the article before publishing. Other clients prefer to stay more hands-off.
Either way, we keep clients informed of the status of all content via their Growth Hub. They can log in to our proprietary software to check the status of all articles at any time.
Weeks 1-4: Month One of Link Building
As we start to publish articles, we begin building relationships with publisher sites in the client’s industry.
We identify a handful of pages on the client’s site each month that will see the most significant ranking benefit via link acquisition. We start promoting those articles to these publisher sites.
Weeks 4-8: SEO Foundation Strategy
After taking an outward look at the competition, we review our discovery notes and build the SEO foundation that will maximize qualified traffic and conversions.
Identifying the most valuable pages to focus on
We’re firm believers in the Pareto rule — 20% of your efforts will drive 80% of your results. We see this principle hold true with nearly every client site. Time and time again, 80+% of a client’s traffic, sales, and keyword rankings are held by a small handful of pages on their site.
If we’re working with a client that has a 100-page site, sure, we could optimize every page of that site. However, optimizing 100 pages for SEO is a time-intensive process.
Our approach is to cut the cost of an SEO foundation by 80% and only focus on the pages with the most ROI potential.
The result is that we get 80% of the results at a fraction of the cost.
This first phase of the SEO foundation focuses on identifying which pages will drive 80% of results. We look at historic site traffic, current keyword rankings, top lead-generating pages, pages with the highest conversion rates, and more. After all of this analysis, we identify a small handful of pages to focus our SEO foundation on.
Defining the right search positioning for the client’s site
The next step is to define the right positioning to maximize traffic and conversions. Here, we weigh unique value propositions, brand positioning, current keyword rankings, and new keyword opportunities to find the right mix of short and long-term ranking goals that will help the business to grow consistently.
We take each page through our Primary Page Purpose Analysis to ensure that we understand how a target customer would utilize the page and identify 1-2 keyword themes to optimize each page around.
We elaborate on the keyword research methodology that drives results for our clients here.
Once we’ve identified the target keyword(s) for each page, we build out title tags and meta descriptions designed to maximize rankings and click-through rates for each page.
We build this into a full report that we send to the client for final approval before implementing this strategy on the site.
Fine-tuning the site for UX and rankings
During our Implementation phase of the SEO foundation, we take time to put the client site through a full technical SEO audit. Put another way, we fine-tune the site to improve user experience and search ranking potential.
- We identify and fix the most critical SEO errors that are hurting ranking potential, such as broken internal and external links, incorrect canonical tags, broken backlinks, and more.
- We ensure that search engines like Google can easily navigate the site by optimizing the client’s sitemap, customizing their robots.txt file, customizing meta robots settings to hide irrelevant pages from search engines, and incorporating relevant schema markup.
- We enhance user experience and optimize for conversions by boosting site speed and adding alternate text to images.
Months Three and Beyond of a Client Relationship
Monthly: Ongoing Content Marketing Services
We repeat the link building and content creation process every month.
Monthly: Reporting Meeting
We take time every month to analyze our results and take an outward look at changes in the competitive landscape.
Our goals within each reporting call are to identify:
- Which elements are working best that we should double down on?
- Which elements aren’t working as well as we expected to see if we should pivot on those initiatives?
- What opportunities do we see based on industry changes and initiatives that are driving results for the client’s competitors?
We prefer to share this with clients on a monthly reporting analysis call. However, some clients prefer to make these calls less frequent.
Weekly: Search Rankings and Site Health Monitoring
We take time every week for SEO Monitoring.
We run weekly SEO audit reports to identify new site health issues that need to be fixed. We also monitor keyword ranking changes for the keywords that we’ve agreed with the client will be the best themes for us to target. We share all of this with the client in a weekly email report.
Business Growth Over Time
Content Marketing is a long-term investment. With most clients, growth is gradual for the first three months. Businesses start growing faster in months 4-6. Months seven and beyond are when we see businesses grow exponentially.
Here’s a snapshot of a few client stories (and how long it took to achieve that growth):
- Choose Wheels grew by 126% in 6 months from our Standard Growth service.
- One of our Standard Growth clients in e-commerce marketing has seen organic traffic grow 256.7% over the past six months.
- Streamline grew 284.4% in 9 months from our Rapid Growth service (they were acquired shortly after).
- A SaaS client saw a 96% organic traffic increase and an 82.8% increase in trial signups within ten months of working together.
- Ridester grew 487.1% in 20 months from our Rapid Growth service.
- One of our Enterprise Growth clients in the financial services space has seen organic traffic grow 1,156.1% and revenue from organic traffic grow 251% in the past two years.
If you need to grow your business by 20% by next month, we can’t help you.
If you want to 3x your business in the next year, we’re the team for you.
Ready to set up a time to get to know each other? Fill out our form and we’ll get started with seeing if we’re the right partner to help you grow.
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