By Shaye Moessner 

“Content marketing” may sound like a huge undertaking. Blog articles, keyword research, and what feels like hundreds of different social media platforms to post on. 

We know that your time is valuable, and there are plenty of other things you need to get done that will provide an immediate return. But, we also know that content marketing is a very effective way to generate new customers and deliver continuous returns. 

Want to step up your content game, but don’t have a lot of time? Keep reading for seven effective strategies you can start implementing in under thirty minutes

1. Ask “Why?” 

Only talking about themselves is one of the largest content marketing mistakes a brand can make. If your blog has become all about support questions or an instruction manual on how to use your products, you need to breathe a little life back into your content strategy with one simple question: 

“Why?”

Why does your brand exist? What’s your larger purpose and mission? The best blogs are the ones that share thought-provoking and industry-leading content based around their “why.” 

Emily Weiss has done this exceptionally well through her blog, “Into the Gloss.” The blog was the launching point for the makeup brand, Glossier, and serves as a space to talk about themselves, talk about their would-be competitors, and to talk about the beauty industry as a whole.

This industry-wide perspective has turned “Into the Gloss” into a destination for anyone looking for beauty news, not just a destination for people looking for information on Glossier products. 

Give yourself permission to think outside the box. There are three important questions you should answer before writing content, but when you’re brainstorming a quick content strategy, you’ll want to start with the why. 

In thirty minutes:

1. Ask yourself “why?” What’s your original intent as a business? Why do people use your product? 

2. Write down your answers. 

3. Spend your remaining time using this list to create blog ideas that fall into these content categories. 

For example, if you’re a CBD company, you might determine that people use CBD for sore or injured muscles. What causes sore muscles? Sports and athletics. 

So, what content can you create around this topic that will answer people’s search queries and lead them to your brand? A blog about best at-home workouts to try or top running trails around town could do the trick. 

With what you’ve learned during this thirty-minute brainstorm, you can begin creating content that’s adjacent to your brand. Work backward, using deductive reasoning to connect the dots. You’ll end up with a handful of new content ideas. 

RELATED: 5 Hacks to Take the Stress Out of Digital Content Creation

2. Utilize Case Studies

If someone leaves you a good review, it’s very likely that they’ll be open to being featured on your blog. This is a quick and easy way to create awesome, informative content about your business. 

What’s the best way to capture all the information you need to write an article-length case study? 

Create a Google Form. 

They’re customizable, easy to use, and — you guessed it — take less than thirty minutes to put together. Use this how-to guide to set up your first Google Form, then save it in your bookmarks. 

Whenever someone leaves a good review, email them the form and feature them in a case study blog post. 

You can even ask them to share it with their fans on social media when it’s finished, or (better yet) ask them to add the link somewhere on their website. This kind of link building will also help with your website’s overall SEO. 

3. Answer FAQs 

Answering commonly asked questions on your blog is another great way to amp up your content while providing value to your readers. 

Researching what your audience is searching for doesn’t take long. 

In thirty minutes: 

1. Hop on Google and search for a word or phrase that’s relevant to your industry. 

2. Scroll down until you see the four questions that “people also ask.”

3. Compile a list of all the frequently asked questions.

The questions might be more basic than you expect, but you can take those questions and create content that answers them. If your content is indexed appropriately, Google might even end up using snippets of your blog to answer the questions in their search result’s “people also ask” call-out box. 

You can also use Pinterest to gain some ideas about what people are searching for online. Begin typing words or phrases about your industry in the search bar, and see what pops up. You can use this as content inspiration for the future. 

RELATED: It’s Time to Ditch These 8 Myths About Content Marketing 

4. Update Your Images

Depending on how many blog posts you have, this may take you several thirty-minute chunks of time but trust us: it’s worth it. 

Whenever Google is determining where your content will rank, it factors in a lot of things — including your site speed and image information. There are two small tips you can use to make sure your images pack a punch (and step up your search ranking). 

Compress Your Images. To help with file size, compress your images before uploading them. You can use free websites like tinypng to maintain the image quality while compacting the image size. 

When you save your image, be sure it’s a PNG. This will help keep the file size smaller, help your website load faster, and your blog rank higher. 

Use Alt Text. Remember: Google can read, but it can’t see. When it crawls your website, it’s not going to see your pictures… unless you’ve tagged them with alt text. 

You want to make sure everything that’s relevant in the picture is written out in the alt text, separated by commas. Get as detailed as you can about the relevant information. 

For instance, if you’re a book publisher and you include an image of one of your books in a student’s backpack, you’d want to tag the book name and the author. You might also want to tag “student, school book.” 

You don’t necessarily want to tag “backpack,” because people looking for backpacks aren’t going to find value in your article, but someone looking for a class reading assignment might. Again, you want to go back to your intent and tag your content accordingly. 

Even if you don’t have time to go back and update old images, this is an easy, quick best practice to use moving forward. Compressing your images and tagging what’s pictured in the alt text should take you a grand total of 15 to 20 minutes. A worthwhile payoff in the long run. 

5. Post Blog Content on Social Media 

One of the many reasons content marketing can seem overwhelming is because there’s the element of creating social media content in addition to blog content. Creating so much content can be exhausting… and time-consuming!

“Work smarter, not harder.” 

When you use your blog content on social media, that’s exactly what you’re doing. 

Read through a blog and pull several “sound bites” from it, like you would for a magazine. What phrases resonate, which ones get your point across? Use these as your social media captions. (Of course, make small adjustments as you see fit, like including emojis to catch people’s attention). 

You can also use information from your blog to create easy infographics on Canva. This one’s a double-whammy: Infographics can be used on social media, but they can also be used in your blog. 

In 30 minutes: 

1. Read a blog article and pull impactful quotes/phrases from it.

2. Turn these into social media captions you can use over the next 2+ weeks. 

Have a little extra time? 

3. Use the information from your blog to create an infographic with Canva.

By including infographics in your blog (and adding social sharing buttons to these images), you make your content more digestible and easier to share across social media platforms. 

What Social Platforms Should I Use? 

We’ll let you in on a social media secret: You don’t have to be on every platform

Gasp! 

Yes, it’s true. You don’t have time to manage 100 social media platforms, and you don’t need to. Find out which platforms your audience is on, and spend time cultivating that community. 

Take five minutes to look at your Google Analytics and see which of your social channels is driving to your website. You might not be happy with the results, but it’ll provide you valuable insight on which platforms you need to focus on. 

You can also take a look at where your competitors (or brands you admire) are on social media. Do they have a strong following on Instagram, or are they scraping the bottom of the barrel? If they’re doing well on that platform, that’s a pretty good indicator that there’s a market for you there, too. 

If you’re still feeling a bit overwhelmed, Instagram is always a safe place to start. It’s become almost synonymous with a company website. Don’t get us wrong, you should still have a website — just use Instagram to funnel traffic to it. 

RELATED: What’s the Difference Between Content Marketing and Social Media Marketing? 

6. Link to Your Blog in Your Instagram Bio 

If you want to use Instagram to bring traffic to your website, make it easy for your followers to access your blogs. 

You can use your link in bio to promote a specific blog, but apps like Linktree and LikeShop give your followers easy access to all of your recent blogs. Choose a handful of links to add, then direct your audience to tap the link in your bio for more info whenever you talk about any of these blogs on your Instagram.   

Setting up a Linktree will take you less than thirty minutes. It’s also easy to maintain — it only takes a few seconds to add new links in as you build out your blog content. 

If you have an hour, you can go above and beyond by creating a dedicated Instagram landing page on your own site. This is beneficial because it brings the traffic directly to your website instead of sending them to Linktree first. 

7. Alert the Crawlers with Google Search Console  

When you create new content, take ten minutes to let Google know your blog is ready to be indexed

Google’s website crawlers automatically crawl your website every so often, indexing it for updates, but you can also manually submit your content to be indexed. 

Every time you post a blog article or make an update, use Google Search Console to let Google know, “Hey, I have new content!” 

Doing this will help your content be indexed faster, which means it’ll rank faster. 

In thirty minutes: 

1. Read a quick article about how to use Google Search Console

2. Index your most recent 3 blog posts (or submit your whole sitemap).

Final Thoughts

Although there is a decent amount of effort you need to put into blog writing and content creation, content marketing doesn’t have to be overwhelming and intimidating. There are quick ways to develop an effective content strategy (ask yourself: “Why?”), and simple ways to create thought-provoking new content with testimonials and commonly asked questions. 

When your content is published, use it to create social media captions and infographics. Link to it in your Instagram bio, bringing in new readers from social. And don’t forget to index it with Google’s crawlers. 

There’s no need to miss out on opportunities because you think you don’t have time or resources to create content. In the world of SEO, a small step can go a long way. 

Block out thirty minutes a week to tackle one of these tasks. You’ll learn something new about the content marketing and SEO ecosystem each week, and step up your content game while you’re doing it.

Want to chat about your content strategy? Drop us a line. We’d love to brainstorm with you.