A Test Prep site wanted a suite of articles salted with a set of related keywords for their French language blog. Their desired style was conversational, and a friendly “nice older sister who wants to help you learn French” tone was decided on.  Keywords chosen were: French, speak French and French words. The Introduction as a sample is shown below, along with a longterm outline for marketing the blog.

Headline: “Speak French Like a Local: The Insider Guide to French Words You Won’t Learn In School” 

Intro: Ever feel tragically un-hip when you try to speak French with native speakers? I sure have. I wanted to look cool and connect with French people, but an embarrassing vacation where I couldn’t find my way to a Meetup in Paris due to poor French language skills made me determined to fit in. You need more than just a good accent and a college French grammar class to pull it off though. You need in-depth knowledge of French pronunciation, a little off-color slang (you need to recognize it, even if you don’t use it), and the French words locals use in everyday life.

If your knowledge and use of French could use a boost of local flair, stay tuned for this download on how to speak French like a native. I’ll be sharing all the must-know French words and “undercover tourist” tips that got me invited into people’s homes and warmly welcomed at residents-only events in both large cities and small towns. This insider guide will get you up to speed on how to speak French like a local, avoid embarrassment, and be welcomed as a friend in the French cities and neighborhoods you visit.


AP French Language Test Prep Blog Marketing Plan

For the rest of the content including how we will incorporate SEO best practices, these were my recommendations:

1. Keep all posts at a comfortable to read level, and stay conversational, friendly and approachable. My slant in writing this blog is “your nice older sister that wants to help you learn French so you can have awesome adventures in France together”.

2. When using necessary jargon to describe French grammar and vocabulary (or anything else), describe what the jargon word actually does. Expand what is meant by example and give a vocabulary set of words in English and their French cognates to illustrate the meaning of technical terms.

3. Posts should include video, graphics and audio samples wherever possible to round out the learning experience for auditory and visual learners, plus exercises that involve movement for kinesthetic learners. YouTube should be an integral part of our strategy so I suggest developing a special company channel for the French Blog. YouTube is rivaling Google in terms of “how to” searches right now, so incorporating a video channel keywording “How To Speak French” is essential.

4. The popularity of foodie culture in France (and of French food abroad) suggests the topic of Fab French Food, where recipes can be explored with videos and recipe cards on varying levels – beginner, intermediate and  advanced vocabulary and syntax. This type of tutorial combines the three major learning strategies into one fun experience, which gets learning in the bones.

5. While keeping the content productivity focused for learning the language, inject as much fun as possible. Humorous variety in multiple areas – education, food, culture, arts, city tours, even throwing some colorful slang into vocabulary practice, will help grow and retain our audience.

6. Go where other sites do not, and expose more quirks of French culture in out of the way places that will encourage not only student language practice, but also a curiosity to know the country better. For example, in addition to the usual posts on Paris highlighting the Louvre, Sacre Coeur and Tour d’Eiffel, explore offbeat topics such as “Halloween Night in the Catacombs of Paris”, or “Fun and Funky Thrift Shopping in the City of Lights”, even “Protest March? In Paris, There’s a Season for That”.

7. In addition to the blog itself, I would create an opt-in to an email channel for a year of daily functional vocabulary lesson flash cards. Subscribers would get a 5 part e-course in addition, which will softsell into the full Test Prep product and provide an ongoing way to provide value and increase social credit with the reader.

8. If Product Marketing is planning an app for this as it has for the GRE, we need to heavily promote the app at the French and Test Prep main blog, and cross link to app content.

Further Considerations to Monetize the French Language Test Prep Blog

1. Include relatable search terms as a “how-to” or Question & Answer portion of the post. Google reveals that “people also ask” the following search terms. These are the terms most likely to be searched additional to “AP French Language Exam Practice Questions” so the post should include them as major points. I would use these terms reworded, as topic headings for a Q&A:
 

– What percent do you need to pass AP French?

– How many times can you fail the AP French?

– How do I prepare for my French language exam?

– What’s on the AP French exam?

  

2. Additional search queries related to “AP French Practice Questions” on Google suggest the following keywords that can be seeded into the post:

  • free AP French Language practice questions
  • AP French 3500 practice questions
  • College French exam questions 2017
  • AP French practice questions quizlet
  • AP French Language questions and answers free download
  • AP French Language practice questions exam cram ncle prac
  • AP French ques exam epub_5
  • AP French Language for college exam

 

Of these, I would choose “free AP French Language exam practice questions 2018” as the optimal set for this year given the preponderance of searches on this type of term. I’ll also be looking at ongoing metrics for this post to gauge reader interest vectors. As metrics reveal a piece of content ranking well, additional content can be built around the topic and its keywords. 

3. If this post performs highly, I will develop videos, pdf tutorials, cheatsheets, top ten tips and other branched content pieces students want. Using the original post’s keywords and topics, cross-linking these in the body of the original post to boost performance further.

4. The meta description for the post should be written like a piece of sales copy, as a condensed ad, as it will show in, and influence the search results. Short and to the point, the meta description should target at least three highly placed search terms, while describing how reading the post will benefit the reader. 

This essentially persuades the student to read the post. Once the student is on the blog and content is being consumed, call to action triggers can then go to work acquiring the student’s email and/or purchase.

Image credit: Willan Brand on Unsplash.com

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