As you are planning your 2019 Content & PR Strategy, you should align it with your SEO efforts to win on search. Our agency approaches content strategy and SEO as a collaborative effort because without coordination and alignment, we find the efforts aren’t as impactful. These days, SEO is mostly driven by content & PR efforts.
We work with our clients on aligning content efforts – including visual and contextual storytelling – with key search terms to make sure their content shows up where the largest audience is, at the top of the sales funnel. It’s a simple and effective strategy when done correctly.
Included below are helpful tips to create relevant, timely and original content that will help for search, thus creating more search exposure and inbound site traffic. After all, isn’t that what SEO is all about? The best way to beat your competitors on key search terms is to ensure your content is front and center when your potential customer is searching.
1. Secure influential media coverage that has high ranking domain authority in search, to create quality backlinks:
National media outlets rank high with Google because of their influence, reach and timeliness. As such, exposure here may get your brand and/or product referenced on a site that sits on page one or two of Google, when potential customers are searching for “best of X, Y or Z” or other high volume searches. It doesn’t happen overnight though, and takes a concerted PR effort to build trust with influential media and be featured in these exclusive stories.
“There is no such thing as SEO without content.
You need words, articles, substance, keywords, verbiage.”
— Neil Patel, digital influencer
Our PR and content teams secure media coverage with multiple outlets to broaden the exposure and reach. We use key search phrases in our content development to explain our client’s product or service, and provide this information to key media influencers. In turn, these influencers will often utilize some of these key search phrases in their editorial to help SEO efforts.
Tip: Utilize research findings (such as buying habits and consumer behaviors) to supplement your editorial, providing more timely and factual insights that media will find compelling. Like this example from one of our building/construction/home clients:
2. Create content for those key search terms:
To improve organic search rankings, develop content, how-to’s and tips for those interests, relevant to your company, that potential customers are already searching for. Identify topic directions and content where your brand can win. Understand what search terms your customer is using and where your competitors may be outranking your brand in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). To win, you’ll want to develop links that drive people to your site and your products.
Not only should your content include relevant keywords, but it should also clearly link to the product pages that are applicable and a step further down the sales funnel. Earning quality backlinks from other sites will help your product show up on page one or two for search. You have to produce content your audience cares about.
Tip #1: Develop highly visual content – infographics, photos, videos. Did you know that 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual? And visuals are processed 60,000x faster in the brain than text. But don’t load load the visuals with keywords, as web crawlers can’t read those. Make sure the images are tagged well with keywords and that the html copy has all the keywords as well.
Tip #2: Develop content in a variety of formats based on editorial opportunities: contributed articles, how-to stories and video content, bylines, commentary/quotes from the executive teams, etc. Utilize this same content, tailored by audience, for your owned platforms–the ways you communicate directly with your customer.
We often times see companies don’t spend enough time researching and properly tagging video content for search optimization.
3. Don’t forget about video:
With YouTube being the second largest search engine, it is important to apply SEO best practices to your video content as well. If you do a search in your browser, you’ll often see videos appear on page one of Google. If you create the video content and tag it correctly, your videos have a good chance of showing up here. While creating the content is important for your owned channels – like your website and social platforms—it’s just as important to show up in search.
Why produce those how-to videos or big brand videos if they don’t show up when and where you can win?
Tip #1: Create clear, compelling and concise titles for your videos. It should include keyword phrases as close to the front of your title as possible, since front-loaded titles rank well in search.
Tip #2: Since YouTube only displays the first two or three lines of text – which amounts to about 100 characters – create a keyword-based description that helps you show up in the suggested videos sidebar.
Tip #3: We like to say that YouTube is the land of How-To’s and Humor (entertainment, basically), so make sure your videos are truly educational and/or entertaining.
While YouTube best practices go well beyond the title and descriptions, this will help your content rank higher and be seen by a larger audience. It’s also very important to think about customer pain points and their needs/desires vs. your specific product features and benefits. In other words, center your videos around how a viewer will search for video, then weave your products/services in as an answer to their needs.
As you build your content and SEO strategy, don’t forget about your business objectives and key metrics. Ensure you’ve outlined your metrics in advance – what are your specific KPIs by channel? What key phrases do you want to win on? How will you engage, reach and share with your target audience?
If you’d like content strategy and SEO help, Seed Factory would be happy to further discuss. You can give us a call at 404-996-4041 or shoot us an old-fashioned email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to connecting!