What good is your content if no one can find it?
This is the question posed in a recent Ad Age article on the re-emergence of organic search, or SEO - services meant to boost a marketer’s search results often without the use of paid media. It is also a question I posted in past blog posts.
The Ad Age article discusses the increase in SEO activity due to the increase in content marketing. As more content is produced in an effort to draw attention to a brand’s products and services, search-engine-optimization plays a major role in the success of a campaign.
"Content is the biggest opportunity for us," said Lavall Chichester, director-search and content marketing for [marketing agency] Lowe Profero. [Brands] are switching to publishing models and the ones working are powered by search."
That brands are becoming publishers is not surprising. In fact, it’s is necessary because it has never been easier to create content and become a publisher, and because empowered consumers drive marketing, creating compelling and relevant content is the best way to cut through the clutter to reach and resonate with your audience.
Today's empowered consumers are driving the marketing equation (Tweet This!) by changing the way they research and buy products and services; this is reflected in the increase in search as their tool of choice:
“Search engines surpassed general media as the most-trusted source for general news and information in 2014, according to PR giant Edelman's latest Trust Barometer. Search engines were up 8% on the Trust Barometer compared with the year before.”
Consumers are the ones making the decision with respect to what messages to pay attention to or ignore. This decision is due to several factors: the message’s relevance to the consumer, the consumer engagement with the brand over time, and the accumulation of these experiences to build trust online.
This shift in consumer behavior is not without opportunity.
The fact that consumers are driving more of the marketing equation simply means you need to figure out what it is they are searching for and provide them what it is they want. Search specialist, iProspect, did this for their client, GMC.
iProspect identified three un-branded search topics: towing and trailering, fuel efficiency, and vehicle performance. It then worked to create lifestyle articles and targeted consumers as they searched these topics. GMC secured the top ranking for numerous unbranded terms and drove around 14,000 incremental organic site visits per month.
What does this mean for you? This means as a marketer you can generate your own opportunities!
Despite the consumer taking more control, it is still possible to influence the conversation. In this example, iProspect found three terms that were widely searched for but which no brand had focused on and in turn discovered an opportunity to create content to address unmet demand. The result, increased traffic, and eventually more qualified leads.
Search is more than just a means to attract visitors to your site. It also serves as an excellent barometer as to what people – you prospects and customers – are interested in by what they are searching for online. Listen to what your customers and prospects are asking for, and provide it.
Ad Age article on the re-emergence of organic search, or SEO - services meant to boost a marketer’s search results without the use of paid media. It is also a question I posted in past blog posts.