Lately I’ve been inundated, as perhaps have you, with the consistent message that the lines between search engine optimization and social media are becoming more blurred by the day.
Today I was listening in on a WSI Webinar put on by our Toronto Home Office. The presenter was Krista LaRiviere of gShift Labs, which is one of the suppliers in the WSI Global eMarketplace. Krista’s topic was The Power of 3: Content Marketing + SEO + Social Media.
Here are some noteworthy points that Krista made:
- There are over 1 billion searches per day on Google
- 94% of searchers click on SEO (left side) links while only 6% click on PPC (right side) links
- SEO is the #1 converting marketing tactic, boasting higher conversion rates than both PPC and email marketing
The noteworthy thing about these points is that although Google makes the majority of it’s revenue from PPC or “Paid Search Marketing”, the paid ads get clicked on far less often than do organic links and marketers, in general are spending far more for PPC than they are for SEO or “Organic Search Engine Optimization”. So the majority of marketing budgets are going toward only 6% of the available audience.
Krista also talked extensively about how strong Google’s play in the whole SEO/Social Media game is. What is it that makes Google the #1 search engine? Relevance! Google’s ranking algorithm’s whole purpose is to calculate which websites are the most relevant for a given search term or phrase. And they are constantly changing little bits and pieces to ensure they are always providing relevance. In fact, Google’s Matt Cutts himself shared that they make algorithmic changes 1-2 times every day. And every few weeks or so they make bigger changes that often impact large percentages of websites, maybe even yours.
Internet Marketing Strategies Your Business is Missing
I don’t want to overgeneralize as some of you reading this may be doing some of these things already, but I would suggest that using this formula would enhance whatever your current results are and insulate you from, if not eliminate any future possibility of being impacted by Google’s ongoing algorithm updates.
1: Create Content that People will Love!
I often hear from clients or prospective clients that they don’t want a lot of content on their website because it’s all cluttered and no-one wants to read content anyway. My WSI Internet MarketingFranchise works with a lot of landscapers and home remodeling businesses in southern Ontario. These businesses are very much design focused and how things look are very important to them. So it makes sense that visual aspects of their website design are more important to them than content.
Here’s something to think about though. If you went to a website searching for landscaping design where you may invest anywhere from $10,000 to $50,000 or even more to have a professional landscape design and installation, do you think that you would be comfortable making that investment with lots of great pictures and very little written content? Of course not!
I’m not suggesting that the content on your website is going to close the sale but it is the beginning of your sales process in most cases. Your content is what tells the visitor how you work with clients, what they can expect, the process, etc. All the credibility of what you are offering is conveyed though your content.
If you had a heart condition and went searching for remedies online you aren’t going to get much out of beautiful pictures of healthy hearts. There has to be good content on how to get a healthy heart.
Don’t forget, content isn’t just the written words. In fact the images on your website are a form of content. And like any content, those pictures can be pinned, shared and tweeted on social networks. More on that later.
Other non-written content could be video content. Videos can be created by having expensive production and editing crews involved or much more cost effectively, by simply filming with your portable camera or smartphone. You can even create video from still images with a bit of panning effect, some captions and a bit of music. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to make compelling video content.
2. Search Engine Optimize all your Content
It’s all too common for content marketers to write up a great piece of content and forget that one of the primary reasons to blog is that it’s first and formost an internet marketing strategy and when done right, that content will be picked up by Google for your target keywords. Don’t worry about getting too fancy with your keyword density or more advanced SEO strategies. You should simply do some research to identify keywords to target for your blogging or content marketing strategy and ensure you include that keyword in the title of your blog or article. Use the keyword a few times in the body of your article and then if possible include it in your SEO Title tag and mention it again in the description if you can do so naturally for the reader.
Remember that all these Google algorithm changes are intended to cut out SEO magic. So if you are doing things in your content to trick the search engines or that will not seem natural to the reader, the chances are it won’t last.
Don’t for get to optimize your pictures and videos for search engines! YouTube is a huge search engine in its own right and well optimized videos will also show up directly in Google’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) so make sure you are writing good descriptions including your target keywords. And use alt tags on your images to ensure they are being found in Google Image searches.
3. Spread the Word with Social Media
A while back in an article I wrote about how to improve your search engine ranking using social media and in also my article Simple SEO Advice from the Smartest Guy in Canada, I point out the importance of back links in SEO. Part of a healthy SEO strategy is to request links from other reputable websites, directories, portals, blogs and so on so that you can boost your link popularity.
Sounds like high school but the more votes or links you have the more popular you are which influences Google’s SERPs. And the credibility or reputation of the source of that link is also very important. With Google’s recent Panda & Penguin updates, low quality links were a main target.
What is the best way to get pure, highly valued links? Social media! Share great content with people and if it really is great, they will also share it! Let’s face it, your biggest content marketing dream is to create some article, video or picture that gets spread all over the world and goes viral. So spread the word!
Your beautiful gallery of work should be pinned. Cool pictures can also be shared on Facebook and Twitter or with Instagram. Blogs or articles should be distributed through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc. In fact you can generate several tweets from just one article in most cases. Don’t do it all at once, spread it out and keep the Twitter love flowing. The lifespan of a tweet is only 20 minutes or so.
4. Measure What Works
Doing content marketing and getting lots of traffic to your website to read and engage with you is not really the end goal. In business there needs to be a good return on investment to make all that time, energy and perhaps financial investment worthwhile.
Ensure you are tracking what’s working. How are visitors finding you? What aspects of your internet marketing strategy is working and where can you tweak to improve the results? There are lots of resources available to help you measure the results. Google Analytics is a great place to start. Other lead nurturing systems such as HubSpot have fantastic metrics embedded in their software.
These 4 internet marketing strategies used correctly and in combination are the only sure-fire way to ensure long term sustained website traffic growth and lead generation to increase your profits in the long run. For more information about implementing these strategies in your business, contact WSI Milton today.
This article was originally posted on the WSI Milton Blog.
Online marketing is now a serious business. Before you get into it, You need to have a clear plan of it. The part most important is to focus on the targeted audience on internet.
Good article. Highlighted some really good points. All the 4 topics are of prime importance while targeting your audience.
Really helpful for all type of social media brands.
Thanks for hitting these main points. Regarding the “Spread the work with Social Media” paragraph.. I found an interesting stat today – “75% of blog managers also perform social media marketing for their company”. For this reason I think it’s important for companies to make their social messages consistent, and follow tips specific to either b2c or b2b marketing.. For example b2c users on twitter respond more when there is a “?” (question mark) in your tweet.