Last week I sat down for drinks with SEO master, Wil Reynolds from SEER Interactive. This guy lives and breathes all things search engine related so it was refreshing to learn just how seriously he takes branding into consideration when he consults his clients’ search results. I was thrilled to learn of the huge emphasis he puts on his clients’ brand narratives, along with when and how these will translate online, which is a consideration I have yet to see in other SEO/SEM professionals.

Wil told me about how he periodically does an “ego surf” to check up on his own personal e-brand — he Googles himself to learn just how deeply his thought leadership has traveled into the interwebs. It turns out that there’s another Wil Reynolds out there who happens to be a model (how’s that for one’s ego?). Over time, Wil has noticed that the image results appearing at the top of the page are that of the model but the links on the bottom remain his SEER professional SEO content. This means that Google recognizes that people want photos of Wil Reynolds the model but blog posts from Wil Reynolds the SEO genius.

Google Recognizes Your Perceived “Value Proposition”

Who cares, though? Google definitely does, since it realizes how users are recognizing the value in your brand. The takeaway for businesses is to remember that Google is placing a market position on your value proposition. Try saying that three times. Your online content should echo what the consumer recognizes you as in real life. Your blog should ring true to your expertise and your images should be highly targeted and meta-tagged with what it is you do best. Simply put – imagine what word people would search right after your company name:
your name (what you do)
ex: Wil Reynolds SEO
Wil Reynolds model

Are the right links coming up for you? Are people able to quickly refine their search based on what they know you’re best at doing?

Google+ & YouTube Are Powerful Value Teachers

People often ask me: “Should we be on Google+?” and “Why should we create videos?”

The answer is a no-brainer if you:
– Have a personal brand (i.e. you sell something for yourself or a business)
– Are a service provider
– Write blogs regularly
– Are a good public speaker
– Have something to demonstrate as your expertise

Google+ and YouTube are arguably the most powerful search aids on the internet. Google+ has a link for Google Authorship, that when embedded in your blog posts will help Google recognize you as a thought leader in your field. It will also build the “your name (what you do)” search results as your own unique value proposition online. Meanwhile, YouTube establishes trust with your viewer – something no other link can do on its own.

Take it from my branding expertise and Wil’s search expertise – marrying the two will never let you down.