Search Engine Ranking Isn’t a Marketing Plan

 From here on out, a marketing plan that consists of (and even more importantly, relies on) “rank well in Google” is a bullshit plan. Because Google doesn’t care about you, or your website or your business. They care about theirs.

From:

GOOGLE PROPAGANDA, SEO AND WHY MARKETERS NEED TO WAKE UP

Want a great search engine ranking? The best way to get it is to forget about it. Build your business. Market your business. Let Google do what it does, while you do what you do.

Marketing Strategies For 2014: Tearless and Fearless (4 Tips)

marketingstrategy2014

Wondering about your marketing strategies for 2014? Many small businesses earnestly create marketing plans, but our strategies last as long as New Year’s resolutions.

Invariably, Murphy’s Law applies. We want to try the latest big new thing (content marketing, perhaps) but whatever we try turns out to be more complicated than we expect. Or it needs more resources that we have. So we pull back and focus whatever’s familiar, even if it’s expensive, and no longer works as well as it once did.

Let’s look at four tearless and fearless marketing strategies. Tearless because they’re free. They just take time. Fearless because they’re easy.

1. Do more of whatever worked for you in 2013.

What worked for you in 2013? If you’ve got an ad that’s been running in your local paper for three years, keep it up. Your customers are used to your ad. They expect to see you there. However, consider experimenting a little. Could you run special offerings for new customers?

If you’re using Twitter to manage customer service, keep doing that. Consider creating a Twitter-specific page on your website to welcome new customers, and tell them who you are.

2. Get found online: blog.

Does your business need a blog? Probably, if only because it will:

Improve search engine rankings – The more content you produce, the more likely you will be found by your prospects when they are researching your industry online. As long as you have a content marketing strategy in place, optimizing for specific long-tail keywords, you should see a significant increase in search engines rankings.

Here’s the easiest and laziest way to answer the “blog or not?” question. Check your competitors’ websites. If they’re blogging, your customers will expect you to do the same.

If you hate writing, post images of your products, your customers, or your town. Blog whatever YOU like. Treat your blog and your Twitter account as your customer service department: help your customers, and your prospective customers, and you can’t go wrong.

3. Forget about the “shares.” Think: “conversions”.

If you’re using social media marketing, Search Engine Journal offered this advice in content marketing trends for 2014:

The main thing that we expect to see in the New Year is for marketers to shy away from the cheap, clickbait content that inflates “vanity metrics,” and move more towards creating niche-specific, high quality content that provides value to their followers.

When you provide valuable content, your visitors will stay on your website longer. This gives you more opportunities for conversions (sales.)

4. The Web means Google and that means Google+.

If you’ve ignored Google+, revisit the network.

As Brett Nuckles suggests:

Getting on Google+ will help Google’s Web crawlers index your site, leading to higher placement during a Web search. It will also ensure that customers get the right information when they search for your business on Google.

2013 has been a big year on Google+; the network is becoming more useful by the month. Google’s sinking money into it. Studies suggest that Google+ has over 500 million users, and that almost 70 per cent of marketers want to learn more about the network.

What marketing strategies are you thinking about for 2014? For me, the mix is much as before. I’ll be blogging, and will remain active on social media. Wherever you are in the world, I wish you much success in 2014. :-)

write a book book coaching

, and on Twitter: @angee

5 Keyword Tips To Inspire You: Never Run out of Content Ideas Again

keyword content ideas

Curses! Google’s turned off the free keyword tool, which means you need to log in to AdWords and use the Keyword Planner if you want Google’s data. But what if you want to use keywords to inspire your content creation, rather than to buy ads?

A little digression. Please be aware that since Hummingbird flew out of its cage, it’s vital to consider your audience, and its needs, rather than create content to any keyword formula. So these days, Google’s free keyword tool would be much less useful anyway. (We all feel better now, right?)

Let’s look at five keyword tips which ensure that you will NEVER run out of content ideas again.

1. Consider user intent, and focus on “themes”

I love this insight from Aaron Wahlstrom. He discusses how to find content ideas without using Google’s free keyword tool, and in the age of Hummingbird:

This is why keyword “themes” and specific theme landing pages will become more important. For instance, if a user historically was using the queries “A great SEO company for a B2B industrial company” versus “B2B SEO”, you may have received vastly different results. However with Hummingbird, the intent behind this search is largely the same. In this case, it is important to now have a page which targets a theme of Industrial B2B SEO, with good content, which will capture both of these queries.

Here’s how this could work for you in practice. Let’s say that you own a garden center, and you’ve been targeting specific keywords for fertilizers in your content. You’ve been writing about fertilizer brands, when and where to use fertilizer etc.

Corral all the “fertilizer” content you have, to see what you’ve got. Next, create an “everything you always wanted to know about fertilizer but didn’t know who to ask” page. Interview your own fertilizer expert, and the rest of your staff too. You want your new page to be as comprehensive as you can make it. Link out to the fertilizer content you already have.

As Aaron suggests in his article, this is your “theme landing page.”

As you corral the content you have, and create your page, 1001 new content ideas will emerge.

2. What’s in the news? Create alerts for your favorite keywords

Go to Google News, and enter your favorite keywords, one by one. Create alerts for them all.

I just entered “fertilizer” into Google News, and got the result you can see in the image below.

keyword in Google News

Depending on your keywords, you may get a lot of results, or very few. Either way, you’ll get some inspiration for content ideas.

3. Use Google Suggest: go through the alphabet

This is my favorite easy, keyword content idea inspiration-getter. All you do is go to Google.com, and enter your keyword, plus a letter of the alphabet.

In the image below, I entered “fertilizer”, and the letter “a.”

Google Suggest
Google Suggest

Just meander through the alphabet, and see what ideas you get. You’re sure to find several ideas which inspire content.

4. Hello Amazon: enter your keyword, and browse books on your topic

Depending on your keywords, you can get some great inspiration here, especially for your “theme” landing pages.

Just enter your keyword into Amazon Book Search, as in the image below. Then check out the Tables of Contents of any books which appeal to you, using Look Inside/ Table of Contents.

Amazon for content ideas

5. Use Soovle, for inspiration-at-a-glance content ideas

Wedded to Google? Google isn’t the only search engine. There are lots more, but don’t worry, you don’t have to click your way through them all. Let Soovle do it for you.

Soovle

As you can see in the image above, Soovle pulls from several search engines, including Wikipedia, Amazon, and YouTube, to give you lots of content ideas.

So there you have it. Five ways to get ideas for content, using keywords, and without using Google’s free keyword tool.

Need content? Contact me today.

, and on Twitter: @angee