From marketing advice to SEO insights, these top picks for content marketing blogs.
We work hard to produce a quality blog full of our best insight and advice on content marketing, SEO, online advertising, and lead generation. But we don’t produce that blog in a vacuum. Like any worthwhile creative endeavor, we draw a lot of inspiration from those around us. And there a lot of blogs we rely on for the research they do.
Our goal for this blog is to create something that is accessible for our customers. We know most of you don’t have the time or interest in tracking down the latest digital marketing research or finding the answers to the most technical SEO problems. Most of the blogs we follow come from a different perspective. They provide top-end research and insight to fellow professionals who have the background to follow the implications of what they’re talking about.
But sometimes we do get asked for more information on a subject. And when we do, these are the places we turn to back us up. They’re great resources, and I’d definitely recommend them to anyone interested in exploring these topics more thoroughly. So, without further ado, here’s my hat tip to the top ten content marketing blogs I read to keep up with latest developments (presented in no particular order).
Moz: For SEO strategy and data-backed reporting.
It’s probably no secret that our team loves the Moz blog. We reference it frequently in our own posts, and we use their tools to help with our keyword research and to monitor page rankings. Their blog takes a deep dive into a lot of technical SEO questions. They’re probably my first reference if I have a particularly challenging question to research. (Well, them and whatever Google’s official resource pages have to say on the subject.)
HubSpot Marketing: For inbound marketing and sales funnel strategy.
HubSpot is mostly known for it’s inbound marketing and lead generation software. But it also runs a fantastic blog covering basic inbound marketing strategies for generating leads and converting them to sales. I can’t count the number of times I’ve seen someone use HubSpot’s various sales funnel graphics used in marketing presentations. They also write quite a bit about buyer personas and how to target messaging to different parts of your sales funnel.
Yoast: SEO with a linguistic bent.
This one’s particularly relevant for anyone running their site on WordPress, as Yoast’s SEO plugin is a popular and accessible tool for checking your page’s SEO. We use Yoast’s plugin on our sites, so it’s no wonder we also follow their blog. I particularly appreciate the linguistic research they put into some of their analysis, such as their coverage of stop words or their emphasis on readability. It’s easy to misuse the Yoast SEO tool if you don’t understand its underlying purpose, but reading their blog will help you understand the why behind their optimization recommendations.
Search Engine Watch: For everything you need to know about Search Engine Marketing.
Founded in 1996 by Danny Sullivan, SEW was one of the first blogs on the scene discussing Search Engines and their implications for marketing. Covering everything Search Engine Marketing (SEM)-related from SEO to PPC, it’s known as one of the industry leaders for research and thought leadership. In fact, both Matt Cutts of Google and Tim Mayer of Yahoo! describe it as a must-read for anyone in the industry. That’s strong endorsement from some of the most in-the-know people you could ask for.
Search Engine Land: SEM news and insight.
It’s easy to get Search Engine Land confused with Search Engine Watch: they similar names and cover similar topics. They’re also founded by the same person, although SEL came about a decade later, after Danny Sullivan left SEW. SEL has a slightly more news-focused content strategy, reporting on new developments in Search Engine Marketing, but it still runs plenty of content discussing strategy for PPC advertising, keyword research, SEO, and the rest.
Kissmetrics: For an analytical approach.
If you’re interested in the numbers and analytics to back your marketing efforts, Kissmetrics can certainly help. Their software tools are focused on testing and automation. However, it would be a mistake to think they’re not user focused. On the contrary: all good testing is about creating a better user experience. So, if you’re looking for insight into the convergence of marketing automation and usability testing, this is a good place to start.
Quick Sprout: For long-form, practical advice on online marketing.
Neil Patel is a huge influencer in the online marketing industry. His blog posts are wonderfully long and provide some excellent in-depth advice on certain strategies. I think he’s especially strong on sales and conversion strategies, but he’s preaching the content marketing gospel to anyone interested in hearing it.
Buffer: For social media, and the content that drives it.
Social media is a strange beast, a chimera formed of content marketing, digital advertising, and customer service. Buffer is a fantastic tool for anyone interested in social media marketing, and their blog reflects that. But they don’t jut post about social media. After all, most social media channels need content to thrive. Without it, what is there to share?
Content Marketing Institute: Content marketing basics + research.
CMI has been in the industry for a long time, but their blog posts are often very beginner-friendly. However, for the advanced content marketer, they publish regular reports on B2B, B2C, and non-profit marketers that help us dig into the nuts and bolts of our profession and understand what’s really working.
Copyblogger: Tips for writing better copy + moral support for creatives.
Honestly, Copyblogger is a bit of an indulgence. I don’t get to keep up with it as much as I would like. But when I do drop in it’s mostly to get a dose of uplifting content from folk who are as deep into the creative field as I am. It’s a tough business, and reading someone else’s take on how to be creative on demand is simultaneously grounding and inspiring.
Yes, you have to read content marketing blogs to stay up to date.
Industry blogs are a key resource for anyone in content marketing, digital advertising, or SEO. Updates happen so fast, and there’s a lot to keep up with. If you’re not reading the top publications—or researching these issues yourself—you’re likely to quickly fall into bad practices. This is what we read to keep up. What do you read?