One of the most dynamic aspects of Google search is the way people search for news and information. If you are interested enough to take a deep dive into the data around news related search, check out Google’s 2015 Year in Review in Google Trends. You’ll see some fascinating displays of data, along with a glimpse into the humanity that binds us all together regardless of location and culture.
Perhaps the most extreme example of news related search from 2015 is an interact data map showing the way people used Google leading up, during, and immediately after the Paris attack. You can see it live here.
I hate to use the Paris attacks in this article, out of respect for the families and victims of this horrible incident. I’m only using this to illustrate, through the use of the data map, how relevant Google has become in our lives as it pertains to news related search.
Here’s a screenshot (non interactive) of the data map showing the search trend timeline in the moments leading up and following the terrorist attack in Paris:
How To Use News for Small Business Content Marketing
From hyper local news and events, to global news that impacts our world, people are Google’ing billions of searches a month in search of answers and information.
And regardless of the type of business you run, where your business is located, and where or who your prospective customers are, news can represent a powerful content marketing source for driving traffic to your website and exposure for your business and brand.
Local News To Drive Brand Awareness & Traffic For Your Small Business
Once you realize there’s a substantial amount of search volume occurring around news and information happening in your target market, you can then conduct your own research and publish news stories on your own business website and blog.
By publishing news articles on your blog, you’ll naturally attract a growing audience of visitors who are located in your geographic market.
And the more visitors you drive to your news articles, the more brand exposure you’ll gain for your small business.
Compare this to the idea of running an ad in your local news paper or their equivalent online edition.
One look at ACJ.com for example, (Atlanta Journal Constitution’s online newspaper version) and you’ll see no less than 3 ads that are all promoting different businesses.
And most pages have more than 3 ads.
Plus you’ll more than likely be hit with a pop-over ad that takes over your entire screen.
Just to give you an idea of what I’m talking about, here’s a screenshot of the AJC.com homepage:
First, Coca Cola has completely overtaken the background of AJC.com. And if that wasn’t enough, they included a rectangular banner at the top of the homepage. Then, Kroger has occupied the entire right hand column of the homepage.
If you ran an ad on ACJ.com, your business will be competing for a very limited amount of exposure and brand equity. Knowing that the average visitor spends less than 1 minute on any given page, the best ROI measurement a site like AJC.com can give you is simply pageviews for your ad.
Compare this to publishing your own unique news article on your small business website and blog.
Each article you publish, and the subsequent visitors you attract, will see only one business when they land on your site… yours!
Your small business gains 100% of the brand equity and exposure from each visitor. This not only works in your favor by not having to compete with other advertisers, but each visitor has more impressionable view of your business.
The more news articles you publish on your website and blog, the more you’ll gradually grow your audience. And the more your audience grows, the more traffic, authority, and backlinks you’ll receive to your small business website.
And this is how news article marketing can not only increase your branding power in your market, but also dramatically increase the rankings in Google for your targeted keyword phrases.