The Art of Driving Content: Speed vs. Quality

by Tanner Christensen January 16th, 2012 

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When you rush into things you tend to overlook details that matter. Like riding a motorcycle 90 MPH into a city and failing to notice the large pothole rapidly approaching, trying to race through SEO is the quickest way to get hurt.

We were on a tight schedule earlier this year, when my team launched a major project we had quickly put together in less than a week. The topic we were targeting was trending and we knew that the content we had created for it was killer, we were certainly going to gain attention and, more importantly, links by launching the project. We were proud of the project and the quick work we had done on it, so we launched without much editing or reviewing our process.

Then the comments started coming in.

Viewers of the project weren't noticing the minute details we had put into the work, what they were noticing was the typos that had slipped by us unnoticed. In our race to get this brilliant piece of timely content out and into the world, we had failed to notice the small bumps in our path: misspellings, extra words, the usual copy problems. Our viewers noticed and so did the big G. We didn't lose rankings, but we didn't gain much apart from learning a lesson either.

You can likely relate to the situation.

Try to think back to a time when you felt rushed to complete a project, when a deadline was impending or the topic at hand was trending, and so you rushed through the project to see it out the door, only to realize you had made a mistake or two.

When it comes to online marketing and especially SEO: you can consider one mistake the final play, game over. Your content can be exciting and innovative, but if there's anything that would create a bad impression with your audience, the project is as good as poop.

It's certainly important to produce timely content, especially with Google's recent algorithm updates that makes it easy for good, timely content to be featured in the results pages, but if you're racing too fast you are bound to overlook something. Which means it's worth remembering: the SEO highway has a speed limit. What is that limit? Well, that's up for you and your team to decide. But always remember: racing to get a project finished isn't as important as making a project that shines with quality.

Seth Godin once wrote about this speed vs. quality notion. Seth said: "What's scarce? Good ideas, not just fast ones. Shipping the good ideas. Finding the spot where uncomfortable meets important…I'd rather you think and instigate. Get back to me tomorrow, that's fast enough."

The next time you face a project that's on a tight schedule, do the work quickly, but not too fast to let the little things slip by. Focus on quality more often than speed and you're guaranteed to reach the finish line, whatever that looks like for you.

Tanner Christensen

Tanner is a creative online entrepreneur who has been writing on creativity, design, business management, and web development for more than nine years. Recently he founded Aspindle creative publishing house.

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