Latest Controversy In SEO World: Content or Promotion

So basically, Neil Patel who is one of the biggest names in SEO said in his video that the popular belief ‘content is king’ is nonsense. In response to it, another popular Youtube Channel Income School made a video that Niel has given the worst SEO advice. Ah, it’s not that often that we get to see such drama in our SEO community. While it is not a real spat and the conflicting opinions are being stated respectfully, a controversy is a controversy, so grab your popcorns or a cup of tea/coffee.

What Neil Patel says about Content Marketing?


To be honest, Neil Patel does says that you need to create original and new content that is amazing to compete with all the content that is already available. The problem Income school has with Neil Patel puts a lot more emphasis on promoting the content than creating the content. You will see him pushing the idea of promoting through email marketing even in the post where he is supposedly teaching how to create great content.

What does Income School say about Promotion?


Income school argues that Neil is giving a lot more value to promotion in comparison to creating content which does not work for beginners or anyone who does not have a huge army as a team to work for their website. They argue that you can not just publish one post a week and promote the hell out of it if you are just starting your journey and do not have tons of resources and huge social media following. This approach will fail big time for beginners and might only work for someone who is where Neil is right now. Truth is while Neil might be posting fresh ‘text-based content’ once a week, there is a lot more kind of content he is continuously posting around the week. This includes podcasts, Instagram content, and youtube videos because technically all this is also content. So posting fresh content once a week is not floating the boat even for Neil Patel!

In contrast, they shared two of their website that is getting a great amount of traffic and helping them generate money for paychecks without any promotional work done on them. They are able to do so just by putting a couple of hundred great quality articles on it. They emphasize that it is important to maintain a balance in the quantity and quality of content you are producing. In this video, they talk about how a major chunk of their income is coming from advertisement and a smaller but significant amount from affiliate marketing. Now, Neil Patel thinks putting advertisement is not a good practice for making money but that debate for another time.

On Page SEO vs Off Page SEO

The important thing is, it is not just gossip about the clash between Neil Patel or Income School but to me, it is more about measuring the worth of On page SEO and Off Page SEO against each other. Let’s take a look at from that perspective. Content is basically a big part of On-page SEO and promotion is mainly what Off-page SEO is about.

80/20 Rule for SEO

So there is an 80/20 rule defined by designers and is believed to be universal in its application. This rule states that approximately 80% of the effects generated by any large system are caused by 20% of the variables in the system. So by this rule, 20% of your input is so significant that it influences 80% of the results. This means there are some very powerful actions which if carried out correctly can give your blog a crazy boost.

Now there is no argument that this 20% super powerful element is Your Content. Neil Patel stated this in the article The 80/20 Guide to Troubleshooting Your Onsite SEO.

80-20-rule-on-site-seo-Neil Patel
80/20 rule for on site SEO by Neil Patel

So basically no one is denying the power of great content. The opinions conflict in the matter that how frequently you should post fresh content and how much of your total resources (time, efforts and money) you should dedicate to content and what share of it goes to promotion. Neil Patel said that it’s 20% creating content and 80% promoting it, however, Income School believes it’s the other way around for the beginners or average bloggers.

While Neil Patel is being accused of giving ‘worst advice’ and being deceptive under the influence of motives of personal gains (A comment under the Income School Video said ‘he is just selling his agency’) let’s uncover who is more worthy of your resources, On-page SEO or Off-Page SEO?

Who is more worthy? Content or Promotion

As there is no denying the importance of good content, let’s dissect the worth of content as the sole tool without its partner known as ‘promotion’. In their video Income School, shared that if you are constantly posting fresh content on your website you do not need to work on promoting your website as the link velocity (the number of links you are generating over time) will grab the attention of Google. This may take from six months to a year maximum but if your content is original and valuable, it will happen eventually.

In my opinion, it is really a waste of time to wait for six months for your articles to rank on their own. There is a high risk that you may lose motivation to produce any further content if you do not see any traffic at all coming to your website. I recommend if resources allow should find a balance between creating quality content and promoting it.

What Promotion Means for Beginners?

Now next question is, how do you promote your content as a beginner when you do not have many audiences on any of your platforms? The answer is pretty simple and straight forward. Promotion is a two-step process. First, you need to build your platform and then you promote your content.

By building platforms, I do not mean simply creating profiles on social media accounts. You need to attract the audience by promoting your platforms. You should not start posting the links to your blog posts on social media until you have created a reasonable size of following there. The right way to do is to post images and quotations that tell your audience who are you and at the same time matches with their interest. You should post content that is related to your niche and attractive for your audience. Do this for a couple of months before you start promoting your website content.

This is my opinion, please let me know what are your thoughts on this topic. You can also vote on the poll I have on twitter which is open for voting till the End of June 2019 and we must see what majority of blogging tribe have to say on the topic.

#bloggersTribe What do you think helps more in getting ranked on Search Engines?
💖 Posting fresh content every day and promoting it an hour a day
💖Posting content once a week and spending the rest of the week promoting it— 🇨🇦 Gurru Says 🇨🇦 (@Gurru_Says) June 23, 2019

5 thoughts on “Latest Controversy In SEO World: Content or Promotion

  • July 13, 2019 at 10:51 pm

    This is a very interesting post! I admit to knowing the basics of SEO. I try to take SEO into consideration. However, in the end, I write whatever I feel compelled to write. If it matches with a good Google ranking and views, great. If not, I’m ok with that as well.

    The debate you highlight is interesting. I have noticed on Youtube that some channels have generated audiences by essentially copying the ideas from other channels in the same niche that have received lots of views. In the blogging world, I have seen people focus on “Top Lists” or “How To” posts that essentially regurgitate content from other sites. They generate traffic this way. However, while some might suggest that it is quality content because it has all the information a person may need, it certainly isn’t original or quality in my mind. But I suppose judgments of quality is for another post and a bit off-topic.

    Great post. and excellent writing. You have a way of leading the reader from one sentence to the next effortlessly. I was engaged through the entire post.

    • July 13, 2019 at 5:55 pm

      Thank you for stopping by and appreciation Roger. It really means a lot to me. I am big on SEO because I want to blog professionally and make a living out of it.

  • July 14, 2019 at 5:29 pm

    Interesting read! I definitely think that the two go hand-in-hand. If you have great content but no promotion, you won’t get anywhere and the same counts for promoting a lot, but having low-quality content!

    • July 14, 2019 at 1:11 pm

      Thanks for stopping by. I totally agree with you.

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