How Volume Nine Uses AuthorityLabs To Increase Client Content Performance

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Before engaging Volume Nine, we were getting almost zero conversions out of our social platforms. In July, they brought us up to 5,000 conversions; by September, our conversions for the month were 22,000. Our month-over-month return has been pretty outstanding, and that wasn’t even what they were focused on; they were prioritizing impressions, engagement, social, and strategy. Our impressions have gone up 3,000–4,000%. We look at the results and can’t believe what we’re seeing in terms of growth.

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These are the kind of results Volume Nine was able to achieve on a routine basis for their clients. Take a close look at these numbers again. Those conversions are from social selling. The very same thing pundits say marketers shouldn’t count on.

Volume Nine found a way to do the impossible for their clients

Volume Nine has been in business for 13 years. In the beginning, they started as an SEO agency, doing all of the same things a traditional search agency does: content optimization, link building, technical optimization.

An acquisition changed everything.

Agency leadership purchased a social media company and repositioned its agency as a content marketing agency that just happens to have deep expertise in search and social campaigns.

The Challenge: Integrating technical expertise and storytelling

Volume Nine started off as SEO specialists. They guided clients through Google’s Penguin and Panda updates successfully, back when technical SEO was at its peak. That’s right, they did this at a time when other agencies were struggling to keep their clients afloat.

The time came for Volume Nine to reposition their agency.

How were they going to do it? They wanted to be platform and channel-independent, to do whatever it took to produce high performing results for clients.

Our goal is to produce high-quality content our client’s audience will actually read and drive down the funnel to conversion. In all our years and all the algorithms updates, we haven’t had clients affected severely by the algorithm or a major update.

Chuck Aikens, Founder

Their social media acquisition certainly helped, but they were merging two specialties into one offering.

We really like working with brands that have a story to tell. When it comes to tech SEO, content audits or developing social media strategy we needed to rely on a different approach. The approach we use is very audience-focused, kind of search and search intent for SEO.

What does this mean?

It’s common for search-driven agencies to focus on the technical aspects of SEO. Focusing primarily on sitemaps, crawling, JavaScript indexing — important but difficult to quantify from a business perspective.

It’s a lot of wasted effort where clients are obsessed with “rankings” and, as a result, agencies are frantically trying to rank for everything. Volume Nine knew an audience-driven approach combined with their technical expertise would lead to real revenue for their clients.

But they also needed a practical basis for their audience-driven, content-first approach.

The Solution: Use a keyword platform to measure performance

Volume Nine turned to AuthorityLabs to track and measure performance over time. They needed a way to keep client focus centered on their audience and KPIs, instead of focusing exclusively on rankings. Aikens explains:

When we publish a blog article, we put a lot of time into it, and we want to track the ranking to see how much visibility it has. But I can get that from other places as well. It’s not really what I’m using AuthorityLabs’ day-to-day tracking of keywords for. I use AuthorityLabs keyword tracking to see how well the overall campaign is doing and to ensure that rankings don’t decline overall once achieved.

Meaning what exactly?

We want to protect what our clients have and make sure their campaigns are moving in the right direction and not have them focus so much on one-offs like a number three ranking for a specific keyword. When it comes to the actual keyword ranking, we try to let it take a backseat and get them focused on traffic and conversions from the page itself.

How does AuthorityLabs help the Volume Nine team do this?

We often build a keyword list both with a zip code and without, so we get the location keyword set and  can understand the delta between maps if that’s relevant. If maps are affecting their keyword positions, we’re going to keep a set of keywords that is map-based with the zip code attached and we’re going to keep one without the zip code. We explain this to the client,  showing them performance data for keywords in both Philly and California or with no state at all.

Volume Nine marries their keyword data to conversion performance, breaking content performance across their core keywords by zip code. It’s a large amount of granularity, but it gives clients precise traffic and conversion data, the details that ultimately matter most.

Volume Nine measures SEO keyword performance across zip codes and devices.

What does this mean for Volume Nine’s clients? 

1. Keyword performance data via AuthorityLabs shows them the kind of content their audience wants.

2. Clients, working with Volume Nine, can consistently churn out content that resonates deeply with their audience.

3. Using AuthorityLabs, Volume Nine clients see content performance by device and location. Content marketing campaigns working like gangbusters in Philly? Clients know right away.

4. Teach clients about the proper role rankings should have and how to use keyword ranking data for their internal processes, as an informal guide or helpful indicator or performance proxy.

5. Volume Nine clients see keywords gained and keywords lost. Clients can look at their analytics data to see if these lost keywords are conversion drivers that are worth recovering.

6. Access “Not Provided” keywords, the very same keywords hidden other marketers struggle to uncover. Volume Nine uses these reports to identify hidden gems, the conversion keywords that produce exponential returns on their content marketing investment.

All of this was crucial because Volume Nine, unlike other content marketers, needed their content to generate a reliable return on investment.

Was Volume Nine’s investment in AuthorityLabs worth it?

The Results: Successful integration and client results

Your longer tail blog post, if optimized and written properly, should have multiple top 10 rankings. Losing any of these is a big deal because clients have invested a lot of money into a singular piece of content. They need to know that they have the visibility or, quite honestly, why even have it on their blog to begin with if it’s not ranking?

Volume Nine placed ranking in its proper place.

As an internal indicator to gauge and regulate content performance across a variety of markets, locations, and channels. Using tools like AuthorityLabs, Volume Nine was able to merge their technical expertise with the audience-driven content their clients needed.

The payoff was huge.

Take a look at the highlights from their newfound approach to content.

These results are stellar, but they’re no accident.

Precise focus, coupled with the right tools and strategy mean Volume Nine will continue to achieve the impossible for their clients. 

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