Posted on | July 4, 2014 | No Comments
Everybody wants a free lunch (or at least as close to free as possible) and that goes double in the SEO and content marketing arena. The thought is usually expressed something like this: “Yeah, I know that SEO can help people find my website on the first page of Google, so they can click on stuff and maybe buy something — but I’ve heard about this black hat stuff and I’ve been doing some research… so, can I maybe just hire some Russians to do some spammy stuff for me so I get the same results for cheaper?”
Not a good idea. Check out this video for the full thing, but this bit of an explanation from a bona fide Google Webmaster sums up the problem with cheap-and-spammy tactics:
“Google is trying to return great search results for users. If you’re trying to do fly by night, churn and burn, black hat, spam, stuff that only lasts a couple of weeks before we catch it, you’re always going to be working in opposition to the algorithm and in opposition to regular users and what they want to see.”
Posted on | June 2, 2014 | No Comments
Usually, it’s because there was never much of an SEO web marketing strategy to begin with. If you’ve got problems with your inbound marketing, it’s probably because you haven’t covered the basics.
It’s All About the Keywords, Baby.
I recently had a prospective client call me up, tell me he wanted SEO for his website but wanted me to just sort of guess at the keywords his business needed because he didn’t want to deal with analytics (and didn’t want to pay me or anyone else to do that work). Suffice to say, if you don’t choose your keywords carefully, your SEO effort is wasted because you can’t target anything.
Want to get more people finding your business? Describe it the way they would describe it, with targeted keyword phrases. An SEO web marketing strategy is dead in the water without it.
Anyway, the call just didn’t go well…
Guy On the Phone: “So, just, like, put in words like ‘business’ and ‘sales’ and maybe a color or something. You know, stuff that my business is about — but don’t spend any time on it because I don’t have any budget for that.”
Me: “Look, that’s not how SEO works. We really need…”
Guy On the Phone: “I’m not paying to figure out the keywords. We can wing it.”
Me: “And you don’t want to do the research yourself.”
Guy On the Phone: “Bingo. Glad we understand each other.”
It didn’t end well. And it never will end well with that kind of an outlook. Search Engine Optimization requires that you’re actually optimized for something. Thankfully, more and more decision makers at companies understand this. It’s making for far better conversations and better SEO results.
Posted on | May 21, 2014 | No Comments
It’s good to be busy. We’re pumping out blog posts, website landing pages and eNewsletters for clients to match the ambitions of their marketing strategies. When the content marketing work gets busy from our side, it can be tempting to maybe skip a meeting or two on the business analytics side of things — which would be a mistake.
Check — and keep checking, that your content marketing you’re producing is matching what’s needed. You’ll want to keep up to date on these metrics:
1. Leads generated. However you’re tracking this, through clicks, calls or quotes, your content should be generating some results here.
2. Mentions. Is your brand getting out there? Are folks actually sharing your content? If not, you may need to look into new ways to get your high-quality SEO content out to the masses.
3. Results from Keywords. Are some of your keyword phrases under-performing? Are others generating unexpected returns? In an SEO-dominated online marketplace, you need to track this stuff.
4. Sales. Numbers don’t lie. Even if your number of leads actually goes down, that could just be because your content marketing is targeting all the better, avoiding useless traffic and only bringing in higher-quality leads that are actually boosting your revenue.
Behind all good marketing content is a marketing content strategy — and when you’ve got good quality in place for both, your metrics should show it.
Posted on | April 4, 2014 | No Comments
There are plenty of things a professional SEO website copywriter can do for any business: write engaging landing pages with compelling calls to action that grab visitors’ attention; ensure your target keyword phrases are included where they need to be, so you’re getting targeted traffic from actual customers and decision-makers; keep your blog updated to that your website stays on top of the search results — and a bunch of related things, to boot. That’s serious marketing value.
That said, a copywriter isn’t a magician, or even a creative fiction writer (OK, they might be on the side — but that’s not what companies pay them to do). A copywriter can’t just make up stuff out of whole cloth. They have to do their research; in fact, the research phase is where they’re likely to spend most of their time, reading articles, interviewing folks and probably checking your proprietary documentation so that they can write knowledgeably about your business. Read more
Posted on | March 21, 2014 | No Comments
Viruses on your computer are bad. Going viral with your web marketing campaign is good. From the sheer quantity of web memes and online communal tomfoolery, you might think it’s easy to accomplish. In fact, it’s hard to hit that sweet spot. It’s even tougher for a commercial message to catch on and earn your company the big bucks.
The Wharton marketing professor Jonah Berger collaborated on a noteworthy paper in this area, asking, “What Makes Online Content Go Viral?” (which he later parlayed into a book, “Contagious: Why Things Catch On”). The paper uncovered three commonalities of contagious online material: Read morekeep looking »