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Over the past few weeks, we’ve talked a lot about the importance of creating high-quality content. Today, we’re going to look at some publications from Newstex’s roster of authoritative content and how they use research to create material that’s helpful, reliable, and meant for people rather than algorithms.
To recap, SEO in 2023 requires more than just stuffing keywords into articles. Content quality is more important than ever.
Mish Talk: Presenting research through data visualization
Our first example is an economics blog called Mish Talk by Mike “Mish” Shedlock. He does a great job of presenting information in an accessible manner. Take his post “Philly Fed Manufacturing Disaster, Excluding Covid-19 Worst Since Great Recession” for example. He takes data from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia and makes it into original graphs. This could potentially be a very dry post, but the visual power of graphs really livens things up.
Marc to Market: bolstering your arguments with a wide range of sources
Another great example is another economics blog: Marc to Market by Marc Chandler. His post “Dramatic Swing in Sentiment Extends the Greenback's Rally” does a fantastic job of marshalling a wide array of material in order to make his argument. If you only draw on a handful of sources, your argument may appear weak. But if you weave together many different sources, your readers will likely find your content a lot more compelling, though it can run the risk of appearing impenetrable to audiences outside your niche. In this case, however, Chandler is clearly writing for an audience of experienced economists, so it works.
The Narwhal: using research to craft compelling narratives
The Narwhal is a non-profit magazine that focuses on the natural world in Canada. “Research shows more highways don’t fix traffic congestion. So why is Ontario still building them?” by Emma McIntosh provides an excellent example of how research can help craft a compelling narrative. Traffic planning might seem like the sort of topic that would put readers to sleep, but the article uses primary sources obtained through freedom of information requests to illustrate the shortcomings of the provincial government’s approach to traffic planning. This makes a very esoteric subject far more relatable because it renders the issue in terms that are easier to understand.
TechXplore: using interviews to help tell a story
TechXplore is pretty much what it says on the tin. They seek to provide high-quality, targeted sci-tech news stories. Their posts often draw on interviews with the people behind major discoveries. For example, “A new elastic polymer dielectric to create wafer-scale stretchable electronics” by Ingrid Fadelli features quotes from some of the researchers who took part in the study in question. You might think that you have to be a big-name publication in order to do interviews, but that’s not actually the case. Many researchers and academics are quite happy to spread the word about their projects, so don’t be afraid to ask for an interview.
Other publications that do a great job of including research in their work are titles such as Energy News Network, and Hit Consultant.
Standing out from the crowd
Doing research can seem like a daunting proposition. It can be tempting to reach for low-hanging fruit instead, particularly when you’re staring down a deadline. But taking the time to do research will help you out in the long run. Not only does it make Google happy, but it also creates the kind of heft that makes readers return to your site. Each of the publications above uses research in a different way. Don’t assume that you have to write a term paper. Feel free to be creative and play to your strengths.
This is part of our larger series about the various elements of people-first content. In the weeks to come, we’ll be looking at other ways to produce original content.
Looking for more information about how to succeed at SEO in 2023? Check out “Authoritative content: creating helpful, reliable, people-first content.”