Search Engine Optimization – Marketing In Tough Times
Part 4 of 8 by Ron Burgess & Jon Burgess
You just cannot write too much content for the web. So don’t stop with just one page, do one every week (or month at least). We build 2-5 pages a week, and share everyday on social media channels.
So, as simple as it seems, if you have been following what we suggested in posts 1 to 3, you have started down the road of marketing online. And the secret is the content.
Most people today don’t like to be “sold”. They want to investigate and research purchases, and make the decision themselves. Of course, much of this is psychological. Most people don’t really understand the real deep-seated reasons for their buying behavior. So it’s your job to help them complete research about your company and products, then, in a subtle way, help them choose your company to do business with. We call this tactic, Inbound Marketing, where we are pulling prospects to you.(That is part of what we want to do here, but with the motivation being your business first.) Keep writing.
Today, we’ll talk more about Search Engine Optimization and online advertising to use your new content to it’s fullest.
Search Engine Optimization is the practice of writing expert content that Google will match with users’ search terms. Some of you do not think of yourselves as experts, but you are an expert on your business and products. You wouldn’t be in business if you weren’t.
Now, think of the search terms your prospects and customers would use to find this information. What search tools do you use to find your competitions sites?
Lets think about Keywords
- Start with “Core Keywords“. What are the handful or dozen words that make your organization money?
- Expand your core keywords to have “Longtail Keywords“. This list should be hundreds of words.
- Build a “Keyword Map”. This is helpful in tying your keyword themes to pages on your website. Every page should have about 3 core keywords.
On Page Keywords
Be sure to use these words in the title of the page, in the discription title and three more time in the body of the copy. Google “reads” your page to figure out what it is about, so don’t mix subjects (except on main category pages). Focus on in-depth work on a narrow subject.
The more “longtail keywords” you have, the more blog posts or landing pages you should consider creating. More content equals more chances to be found on search engines.
CONTENT PLUS – Build & Nurture
New approaches to Search Engine Marketing are developing. We will walk you through some of these so you can take advantage. Remember that only about 5% of all websites are really effective, so even if you are substantially behind your competitors, you just have to write more than they do to eventually win. Here is another way to do this.
Part of writing for the Internet includes blogs, emails and social networking. While social networking has not lived up to the mass media hype, there are cost effective uses. Email is effective at creating traffic for blogs and landing pages, and gathering email from new visitors is important for growing your list. A landing page is an unlinked or hidden page on your website that answers a basic question (longtail keywords), or responds to an offer on an ad. The page is not accessible through your website’s navigation unless the offer or question is asked on an appropriate page in the website. The only links to the landing page are the appropriate search pages, blogs or emails. (Direct mail and print are more frequently being used to push people to landing pages as well.)
The landing page offers something they would like to have, in return for their email address. The offer is immediately returned to them via email. An example might be: Birdhouses. If you sell birdseed (and other pet supplies), you might write about fun birdhouse designs, how the feeders work and what to feed different birds, etc. That page provides a free set of plans for a birdhouse. They choose to give you their email to get it, and you then put them on your mailing list specifically for bird seed and other birdhouse plans. Each email then has a link back to your website where they can buy the birdseed.
So, you see that if you know about birds, this is not a very difficult assignment. Just a page and plans (you must have the rights to distribute them). The technical stuff? No worries, we’ll do it for you.
The really great part? This little ad or offer, and the opportunity for a dialog with customers, costs you less than half of one single newspaper ad. AND it will be online for the world to use forever, for NO cost, (as long as you keep your website up.)
Now, the next time your ad salesman comes in, check out the price for that ad, and imagine running it every day for a year. You get it. It’s ridiculous compared to what you can do, mostly on your own, by writing about your expertise.
This is the way the hot websites do it. Imaging having a hundred offers like this, or five hundred. It takes time to get this working, but the effect is cumulative. This is what the successful online marketing efforts look like. And all you have to do is write down what you already know!
MARKETING ACTION ITEMS:
- Create your Core & Longtail Keywords
- Keep writing. Work on 12 new pages, then start on your product offer.
Marketing in Tough Times Series
- Part 1. Prioritize & Innovate
- Part 2. Building a Marketing Budget
- Part 3. Review Your Website & Communications
- Part 4. Search Engine Optimization