Duncan Green a director of Moo Marketing, a website optimisation agency based in Manchester’s Sharp Project talks about SEO to increase sales
The way your potential customers are interacting online is changing; it’s been a progressive change over recent years, but Google is now catching up. You’ll hear people use the terms ‘social signals’, ‘Influence’ and ‘klout’ – these are buzzwords that agencies love to use – partly to confuse. These words can be summed up by a great term ‘conversation’. And it’s conversation that will increase your sales.
To prosper online, conversation should be at the heart of your online marketing strategy. A good conversation is one that interests and therefore engages people. When people are interested and engaged online, they often share and start new conversations, using social media and blogs. This means you’ll be gaining links to your web properties through an organic, natural and enduring method. If you read industry papers, you’ll have read a lot about Google’s new measures to curb spam SEO tactics such as link buying, which I believe is great progress as those businesses that have genuine respect and engagement with their potential customers will benefit.
How do you start the conversation? You need to get your message out; I call the process ePR:
Strategy – Define who you want to talk to and what you want to talk about. Take lifestyle triggers and seasonality into account
Blogger relations – You now know your audience; to reach them find existing blogs that match your target audience. Contact the blog authors and discuss the options for content submissions and spotlights or offer one of your company representatives for expert opinion
Content distribution – Where better to start than your own website; make sure you have a blog or news area that is user friendly. Liaise with online journals that cover your industry, along with the blog authors to make sure they know when you publish content relevant to their audiences
Social media management – A great way to keep in touch with your users, online journals and blog authors is to start direct conversations on social media sites, like Twitter. If you’re not starting, or engaging in, conversations yourself, do you really expect others to do so about you? Once you’re having conversations keep the momentum going otherwise your message, and therefore search results, will go stale. In the words of Amit Singhal from Google: “Search results, like warm cookies right out of the oven or cool refreshing fruit on a hot summer’s day, are best when they’re fresh.”