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Best Practices for Content Marketing in 2023



Best Practices for Content Marketing in 2023

There is no silver bullet in content marketing. Just as there is no universally best approach to fat loss, you would be hard-pressed to find one content marketing strategy that works for every business. 

However, that doesn’t mean your efforts are futile. Far from it. For 85% of businesses that use it, content marketing performs from moderately to exceedingly well. Part of that success comes from understanding and following the industry’s best practices.  

Now, before we dive into best practices for 2023, let’s quickly run through foundational content marketing principles you need to follow regardless of the year on your calendar.

The Core Principles of Content Marketing 

Even if you follow best practices discussed later in the article, your content marketing strategies are bound to crumble without good foundations.

Understand Your Target Audience

Behind every successful marketing campaign there is a marketer that carefully analyzed their target audience. The exceptions are mostly blind luck and not something you should bet on.

Having an intimate knowledge of you target audience helps you:

  • focus on the right content distribution channels
  • adjust style and tone of voice to create greater emotional connection
  • create content that helps solve actual problems your target audience has
  • zero in on customers pain points and increase conversions rates

Furthermore, you need to keep in mind that your target audience aren’t just the people that are using your product or services. The pool is often much wider, forcing you to also target people who your customers take advice from (influencers), as well as the people they need to get approval from (decision makers).

Set Realistic Goals and Plan of Action

The same research mentioned in the intro states that 73% of B2B marketers have a marketing strategy, with 40% having the strategy written down.

1673171105 805 Best Practices for Content Marketing in 2023

I would argue that this research actually shows how only 40% of marketers have a marketing strategy. Because if it is not written down, there is little accountability, and it is generally too complex to just sit in one person’s head.

Defining realistic marketing goals and metrics is challenging. When you are doing it for the first time, you are going to miss with your estimates. Probably by a lot.

My advice is to get down and dirty. 

First, watch who you are comparing yourself with. Your marketing budget is likely to be much smaller than top dogs in your niche. Instead of picking a fight with them right off the bat, aim to surpass companies that are just one or two levels above your weight category.

Secondly, be sure to outline the steps you need to take to reach your goals. Increasing organic traffic by 50% in 12 months is a fine goal. However, don’t stop there. Break it down. Define how many content pieces you need to publish and how many backlinks do you need to build to get there.

Do that for all of your goals and you will already be a step ahead of most content marketers.      

Master the Basics

I like to think of content marketing as using content to build trust and awareness and generate traffic, leads, and customers. Usually in that order.

When you look at it that way, they only way to be successful at it is to understand the basics of:

  • Content planning (target audience research, keyword research)
  • Content production (selecting the right content type, consistently producing well-structured content with actionable advice)
  • Content optimization (on-page seo)
  • Content promotion and distribution (off-page SEO, PPC, influencer outreach, social media marketing) 

This is a tall task for any business that isn’t big enough to set up an in-house marketing team. However, even if you outsource it, it pays to understand the basics to ensure that the agency you are working with is spending your money wisely.

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Content Marketing Best Practices in 2023

With firmly established foundations, it’s time to explore what are the best content marketing practices you need to start implementing in your business in 2023.

1. Create Keyword-Based Content Strategies

In personal experience, one of the most common mistakes businesses make is not having a clear, keyword-based content strategy. They think that just creating quality content is enough. Unfortunately, this is not the case of “if you build it, they will come”. 

If you want to grow by converting organic traffic into leads and customers, you need to have a content strategy based on in-depth keyword research.

We have a few clients in industrial B2B niches and even there we are seeing competition seriously ramping up. Just throwing content at the wall and hoping something sticks rarely worked so far, and is definitely not the way to go in 2023.

2. Find Ways to Provide Additional Value with Your Content

More and more brands are understanding the value of quality content. If you want to compete for the top spots in SERPs for challenging keywords, look for new ways to provide additional value by making your content more convenient to consume and easier to apply. 

That can mean a lot of different things in practice:

  • Making sure that long form pieces are logically structured and come with an easy to use content table.
  • That broad and general advice gives place to actionable tips and relevant real-life examples.
  • Supporting complex concepts with custom animations or (info)graphics that include steps, diagrams, and other visual representations that increase the understanding of the topic.
  • Reaching out to experts in the field and sharing their thoughts on specific issues.
  • Adding polls, quizzes, and calculators to make content more interactive.

This is not a definite list, but it should be enough to get your creative juices flowing.

3. Be Consistent

Doing quality content marketing is a lot like trying to achieve a fitness goal. The key ingredient is consistency.

You should:

  • produce and publish content consistently
  • have a minimum level of quality every content piece should satisfy before it goes live
  • try to keep a consistent style and tone of voice across all channels
  • have a set of visual brand guidelines to create a recognizable visual style

If you are just starting out, don’t be afraid to test things out. It might take a while until you find your brand voice. When you do that, create your brand style guide – and stick to it!  

4. Build What You Can, Outsource What You Can’t

Scaling up content production without any drop in quality is hard. If you do not have a dedicated marketing department, I would recommend turning to a content marketing agency for help. 

Now, that doesn’t mean you should abdicate all of your responsibility to an agency. Nor does it mean that you should give them all of the reins. 

For example, we work with a few businesses that have excellent content writers with in-depth knowledge of the subject area. In this case, we take the role of an editor – prepare content briefs, review outlines, add custom graphics, and make sure the content follows best on-page SEO practices.

In other words, those businesses use us to plug holes in terms of their marketing skills and knowledge.  

Another reason to stay involved to some degree is to make sure the content follows your brand tone and voice and really connects with your brand, as well as to coordinate lead generation and other promotional activities you might be doing in parallel. 

5) Leverage Your Analytics

As more and more businesses compete for customer’s attention, only those with a strategic approach to content marketing are going to see a fat ROI.

Recently, we talked with a semi-known brand in the interior design niche. They have over 500k monthly organic traffic but fairly low conversion rates as most of that traffic is generated by awareness phase-level content.

They wanted to spend most of their budget on building links to pages that are already performing well. While that would probably work ok, the more cost-effective idea was to split that budget in 3 parts. 

The first part would be used to continue boosting pages that are already generating some leads. The second part would be used to increase overall conversion rates on the site. 

Most interestingly, the third part of the budget would be used to boost pages that have the best conversion rates in terms of percentages, but currently generate a very small amount of leads because they are ranking poorly and do not get a lot of traffic – in other words, potential gems.

1673171105 290 Best Practices for Content Marketing in 2023


The key takeaway from this story is that creating such a concrete and cost-effective strategy was only possible because the client meticulously tracked the performance (traffic,conversion to lead, conversion to paying customer…) of all of his pages.

6) Be Transparent and Authentic

9 out of 10 consumers say that authenticity is important when deciding what brands they like and support. 

In an age where every brand message is designed to sell something and where every social media post is meticulously planned, people are sick of that uncomfortable feeling of being manipulated and told what to think. They crave transparency and authenticity. 

It is one of the reasons behind the huge success of Joe Rogan’s podcasts.  

So, if there are causes you want to support and talk about, find those you really care about. Be honest about your product and service, and what you can offer. 

Last but not least, when the context allows it, try to have some fun with the content you’re creating. Do your part to make the Internet a better place.

Trust the Process

It is not easy to measure the success of your overall content marketing efforts, especially as VPNs, GDPR, and other tools and laws reduce your tracking capabilities.

On top of that, content marketing campaigns with a modest budget can take 6+ months of consistent work to show provable results.  

Putting in earnest work for a few months and not seeing results can quickly become discouraging. You might even be tempted to pivot and make significant changes. Think twice before doing that.

If you are following industry best practices and have polished internal processes that can catch and eliminate quality issues, it is time to exercise patience and put some trust in the process.

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About the author

Cynthia RamsaranCynthia Ramsaran

Cynthia Ramsaran is director of custom content at Third Door Media, publishers of Search Engine Land and MarTech. A multi-channel storyteller with over two decades of editorial/content marketing experience, Cynthia’s expertise spans the marketing, technology, finance, manufacturing and gaming industries. She was a writer/producer for and produced thought leadership for KPMG. Cynthia hails from Queens, NY and earned her Bachelor’s and MBA from St. John’s University.

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Revolutionizing Auto Retail: The Game-Changing Partnership Between Amazon and Hyundai



Revolutionizing Auto Retail: The Game-Changing Partnership Between Amazon and Hyundai

Revolutionizing Auto Retail The Game Changing Partnership Between Amazon and Hyundai

In a groundbreaking alliance, Amazon and Hyundai have joined forces to reshape the automotive landscape, promising a revolutionary shift in how we buy, drive, and experience cars.

Imagine browsing for your dream car on Amazon, with the option to seamlessly purchase, pick up, or have it delivered—all within the familiar confines of the world’s largest online marketplace. Buckle up as we explore the potential impact of this monumental partnership and the transformation it heralds for the future of auto retail.

Driving Change Through Amazon’s Auto Revolution

Consider “Josh”, a tech-savvy professional with an affinity for efficiency. Faced with the tedious process of purchasing a new car, he stumbled upon Amazon’s automotive section. Intrigued by the prospect of a one-stop shopping experience, Josh decided to explore the Amazon-Hyundai collaboration.

The result?

A hassle-free online car purchase, personalized to his preferences, and delivered to his doorstep. Josh’s story is just a glimpse into the real-world impact of this game-changing partnership.

Bridging the Gap Between Convenience and Complexity

Traditional car buying is often marred by complexities, from navigating dealership lots to negotiating prices. The disconnect between the convenience consumers seek and the cumbersome process they endure has long been a pain point in the automotive industry. The need for a streamlined, customer-centric solution has never been more pressing.

1701235578 44 Revolutionizing Auto Retail The Game Changing Partnership Between Amazon and Hyundai1701235578 44 Revolutionizing Auto Retail The Game Changing Partnership Between Amazon and Hyundai

Ecommerce Partnership Reshaping Auto Retail Dynamics

Enter Amazon and Hyundai’s new strategic partnership coming in 2024—an innovative solution poised to redefine the car-buying experience. The trio of key developments—Amazon becoming a virtual showroom, Hyundai embracing AWS for a digital makeover, and the integration of Alexa into next-gen vehicles—addresses the pain points with a holistic approach.

In 2024, auto dealers for the first time will be able to sell vehicles in Amazon’s U.S. store, and Hyundai will be the first brand available for customers to purchase.

Amazon and Hyundai launch a broad, strategic partnership—including vehicle sales on in 2024 – Amazon Staff

This collaboration promises not just a transaction but a transformation in the way customers interact with, purchase, and engage with their vehicles.

Pedal to the Metal

Seamless Online Purchase:

  • Complete the entire transaction within the trusted Amazon platform.
  • Utilize familiar payment and financing options.
  • Opt for convenient pick-up or doorstep delivery.
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Hyundai’s Cloud-First Transformation:

  • Experience a data-driven organization powered by AWS.
  • Benefit from enhanced production optimization, cost reduction, and improved security.

Alexa Integration in Next-Gen Vehicles:

  • Enjoy a hands-free, voice-controlled experience in Hyundai vehicles.
  • Access music, podcasts, reminders, and smart home controls effortlessly.
  • Stay connected with up-to-date traffic and weather information.

Driving into the Future

The Amazon-Hyundai collaboration is not just a partnership; it’s a revolution in motion. As we witness the fusion of e-commerce giant Amazon with automotive prowess of Hyundai, the potential impact on customer behavior is staggering.

The age-old challenges of car buying are met with a forward-thinking, customer-centric solution, paving the way for a new era in auto retail. From the comfort of your home to the driver’s seat, this partnership is set to redefine every step of the journey, promising a future where buying a car is as easy as ordering a package online.

Embrace the change, and witness the evolution of auto retail unfold before your eyes.

Revolutionizing Auto Retail The Game Changing Partnership Between Amazon and Hyundai

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How to Schedule Ad Customizers for Google RSAs [2024]



How to Schedule Ad Customizers for Google RSAs [2024]

It’s no wonder that responsive search ads have steadily grown in popularity in recent years. Through Google’s machine learning capabilities, RSAs provide a powerful way to automate the testing of multiple headlines and descriptions to ensure a closer match to user intent. The benefits are clear: RSAs mean broader reach, better engagement, and improved performance metrics.

However, all these benefits come at a significant (but reasonable) cost – they can be extremely difficult to manage, especially when it comes to updating ad copy to promote limited time offers.

I know this firsthand – I work with several ecommerce clients with promotions that constantly change. Not too long ago, I found myself going through the consistently tedious process of updating a client’s RSA headlines and copy. As I was making the changes, I thought to myself: “There must be a better way to update this ad copy. I shouldn’t have to use find and replace so many times while pausing and enabling my ad campaigns.”

After expressing this to my colleague, Jordan Stambaugh, the two of us agreed there must be a better way. But we’d have to make it happen. A few weeks later, we put that idea into action and created a more efficient process for updating RSA ad copy on a scheduled basis. If you want to try this process for yourself, just keep reading.

Responsive Search Ad Customizers 101: Basic Options & Execution

Before diving into the process of scheduling automatic updates for your RSA customizers, it’s essential to understand some key Responsive Search Ad fundamentals.

First, you can customize three main options within RSAs: the Attribute Name, the Data Type, and the Account Value. Each of these plays a vital role in personalizing your ads:

  • Attribute Name: This is essentially the identifier for the customizer. It is how you’ll reference the specific piece of information you’re customizing within the ad. For instance, if you’re running a promotion, you might name an attribute “Promotion.”
  • Data Type: This indicates the kind of data the attribute represents and it determines how the information can be formatted and used within the ad. Common data types include Text (for plain, non-numeric text), Percent (to represent percentage discounts), Price (to denote monetary values), and Number (for any numerical value).
  • Account Value: This is the default value for the attribute that you set at the account level. It acts as a fallback if more specific values aren’t provided at the campaign or ad group level.

For example, if you wanted to promote a 10% off discount using RSAs, you’d use the “Discount” attribute, a data type of “Percent,” and an account value of “10% off.” Then, when someone is searching for products, Google would test automatically inserting a copy regarding a 10% off promotion into your ad.

Once you’ve set up the right customization options, you can start to format your RSAs with customizers.

Here’s how:

  • Start by typing in {
  • Click on Ad Customizer then select your attribute
  • Google will populate your attributes that are already uploaded
  • For a simple offer, use the “Default text” attribute as a catch-all. This will ensure your ads run smoothly if Google can’t pull the right messaging from your RSA feed



How to Schedule Your Ad Customizers with a Feed

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s cover how to schedule your ad customizers.

Just follow this three step process:

1. Create the feed

Start by creating two sheets: The Parent sheet, and the Child sheet. The “Parent” sheet will act as the primary data source, while the child sheet will pull data from the parent sheet.

We’ll start by building the parent sheet. After opening the sheet, start by renaming the active tab to “Promotions.” Don’t skip this step, it’s crucial for referencing this range in formulas later on.

In your “Promotions” tab, head to the top row and label columns A, B, and C with the headers of your ad customizer attributes. For example, you might have “BrandSaleHeadline” as your attribute in column A, “text” as the Data Type in column B, and “Shop the Collection” as the Account Value in column C.

Once your headers are in place, move to cell C2. Here, you’ll input the expression =lookup(today(),F:G,E:E). This formula will play a key role in dynamically updating your RSA customizer based on the current date.

Next, go to columns E, F, and G, which will be used to manage your scheduling. In these columns, you’ll list out the different values your chosen attribute might take, alongside their corresponding start and end dates. For example, under the “BrandSaleHeadline” attribute, you might schedule various promotional headlines to appear during different sale periods throughout the year.

Here’s how your sheet might look:

Now look back at the first 3 columns on your sheet. They should look like this:

Now create a second sheet. We’ll call this sheet the Child sheet. It’s going to automatically pull in data from the parent sheet you just created, and will be the one you link to Google Ads later on.

Columns A, B and C will be almost identical to the child sheet, but we will be using a special formula later so we can automatically populate this. So, start by labeling Row 1 Column A “Attribute,” then the next column as “Data type,” then column C as “Account value.” 

Then go to C2 and use this expression to populate the right account value from the parent document: =importrange(“[PARENT DOCUMENT URL HERE]”,”Promotions!C2″)

Your sheet should now look like this:

We recommend adding a date range with default text for any days you’re  not running a promotion. In the example above, we have “Shop Our Collection” appearing as default text.

2. Input attributes

Once you have your feed created, the next step involves inputting your attributes into the Google Ads platform. This can be done either manually or through a bulk upload.

For the manual approach, navigate to “Tools & Settings” in your Google Ads interface, then go to ‘Setup’ followed by “Business Data.” Here, you’ll find an option for “Ad Customizer Attributes.” Click the plus sign to add your attributes. It’s crucial to use the same attribute names that you’ve established in your Parent Google Sheet template to ensure consistency and proper data synchronization.



Alternatively, if you prefer the bulk upload method, again head to “Tools & Settings.” This time, select “Bulk Actions” and then “Uploads.” For this process, you only need to upload columns A to C from your template. 

Be aware that it might take some time for your uploaded attributes to be reflected in the business data section of Google Ads.

3. Set up an automatic schedule

At this point, you’ve almost finished scheduling your ad customizers. Navigate to Tools & Settings, then Bulk Actions, then Uploads, then click the Schedules tab at the top. Select your Child Google Sheet as the data source, and share your Google Sheet with the appropriate email.



And there you have it – Google will automatically pull in the data you populated in the sheets into your RSAs.

Common Challenges When Scheduling RSA Ad Customizers

When we test these sheets with our clients in the wild, we’ve uncovered five common challenges. Be on the lookout for these issues – solving them before they happen can save you a lot of trouble down the line.

Not scheduling your upload when the site changes 

The first and most significant hurdle is the mismatch between the scheduled data upload and website content updates. For instance, if the Google Sheet is set to upload at 11 am, but the website changes occur at 3 pm, there’s going to be a discrepancy where the wrong message could be displayed for several hours, or new messaging could appear prematurely. Conversely, if the website updates happen before the scheduled sheet upload, outdated promotions might linger until the new data is imported. Synchronizing these schedules is crucial; it’s best to align them so updates occur simultaneously.

Skipping QA during a message change

Another pitfall is neglecting quality assurance (QA) during message updates. It’s vital to regularly check the business data section to verify that the correct values are in place post-update.

Issues with the IMPORTRANGE function

Then there’s the technical aspect of setting up the IMPORTRANGE function correctly in the Google Sheets template. The ‘child’ template must reliably pull data from the ‘parent’ sheet. If this function isn’t configured correctly, data won’t be imported as needed.

Not sharing access of the Google template for automatic uploads

Pay attention to your access permissions for the Google Sheets template. Google will prompt you with the email address that needs permission to access the ‘child’ sheet for automatic uploads. Overlooking the sharing of your sheet with this address will prevent the system from working.

Having date range gaps in your parent sheet

Lastly, a common oversight is leaving date range gaps in the ‘parent’ sheet. Every single date must be accounted for without overlaps. A practical tip is to have an ‘evergreen’ backup message ready, scheduled to run continuously, ideally through the end of the year, to cover any potential gaps.


Leveraging Google Sheets in conjunction with Google Ads to schedule RSA ad customizers is a game-changer for managing dynamic promotional content. This process not only streamlines your workflows but also ensures that your ads remain relevant and up-to-date, reflecting current promotions without the need for constant manual intervention. 

By adopting this method, you’ll save significant time and effort, allowing you to focus more on strategy and less on the minutiae of ad copy updates. Give it a try and experience a more efficient way to manage your RSAs, keeping your campaigns fresh and engaging with minimal hassle.

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