Do you own an online business? If the answer is yes, then there are definitely a few steps you could take to improve not only your marketing, but your “brand experience” in general. Owning and operating a successful business that not only sells products, but can be considered as an actual brand that people recognize isn’t as hard as it sounds. You will, however, need to invest in more than just marketing.
If you own an online business that you’d like to take to the next level, stick around. We’re going to talk about how you can not only use SEO as an excellent marketing tactic, but integrate SEO with your website content and social media to create a real brand experience that stretches across multiple platforms and rings bells in the customer’s head when they hear or see anything associated with your brand.
SEO Done Right Can Be Your Biggest Asset
If you have a basic understanding of SEO, you know that it’s intended to get your web pages ranked higher on google. You include commonly searched for keywords in critical spots throughout your web content, and sit back as your pages continue to climb in ranking.
But, there’s another aspect to SEO that can improve your ranking even higher and doesn’t necessarily rely on search engines searches. Most people create web content purely for the search engine ranking benefits, which means they neglect that actual quality of the content. Keyword stuffing is the most common example of this, but regardless of the form it shows up in, the philosophy is the problem.
More clever business owners will instead look to emphasize quality first, then SEO. This doesn’t mean neglecting it, it just means including SEO that isn’t going to pop up on anyone’s internal “keyword stuffing” radar or compromise the quality of the content.
Social and Earned Media Value Should Be Your Main Focus
Having your pages rank highly on Google is great, but the really beneficial results come from generating as much social and earned media value as possible. By doing so, you use your platforms as a launching point for generating web visits, completely bypassing the tried and true method of SEO for search engine ranking, without discarding it entirely.
This type of content is going to be clickable, shareable, easy-to-digest, informative, authoritative, or all of the above. By creating content like this and focusing on the SEO aspect of it as an afterthought, you will generate the best results when it comes to creating a real brand experience. A bad business that sells poor quality products and offers poor customer service can actually still succeed if they have a lights-out marketing setup.
But, a quality business that sells good products and treats its customers well will take off like a rocket with a lights-out marketing program. This is what you should be striving for. If you want to accomplish this, you’ll need to offer value in the form of products AND content. Some examples of alternative value you can offer the customer include long-form, authoritative blog posts that provide them real insight, functional knowledge, entertainment, or some combination of the three.
Infographics and videos are two more examples of content that can come across as extremely valuable or entertaining to the consumer while also being SEO-friendly. Building a cache of content such as this will encourage other sites to link back to yours, offering value to THEIR consumers via YOUR content. It’s not hard to see how this can quickly create a highly-recognizable and very real brand experience for your own customers.
SEO Can Be Leveraged in More Ways than One
By seeking to provide real value to your consumers in the form of content such as long-form blog posts, videos, infographics, and more, you can essentially sneak your SEO past people without it affecting the quality of your content at all.
Instead of creating content centered around your SEO keywords, you should pick and choose SEO keywords that fit into the valuable content you’re offering. Taking this approach will not only boost your web page rankings, it will boost your visibility as a company and brand that strives to bring value to its customers in addition to selling them products.
Marla DiCarlo is an accomplished business consultant with more than 28 years of professional accounting experience. As co-owner and CEO of Raincatcher, she helps business owners learn how to sell a business so they can get paid the maximum company value.