21 Aug How Effective SEO Creates Successful Digital Marketing
There’s a term that’s popped up in common everyday language. If you ask someone a question that no one is likely to know, they respond, “Why don’t you Google it?” That is the key to unlocking all your business solutions and marketing in the Internet age: SEO, Search Engine Optimization and Digital Marketing.
Besides asking whoever is sitting in the room with you, you actually head to search engine land. Most likely you go straight to Google, Bing, or maybe Yahoo. You are watching a television show about Medieval weapons and are reminded about that time you were 12 when you went to Medieval Times.
You wonder aloud if there’s one open in your area because now you want to take your kid there. It brings up all kinds of information from the nearest location to reviews for that location, along with the themed restaurant and jousting experience.
It turns out that Google, Bing, and Yahoo are kind of like your partners in business because they have electronic tomes on how people search for items and information. They keep records of trends too. Maybe 15 years ago people looked up the same term Medieval Times Restaurant and then were given less targeted results.
In addition, now thanks to smartphones you can search from your phone, and one press of the button call up the restaurant. Nearly 20 years ago you could have found the website, maybe, and probably would have picked up your landline to call them – As technology changes, searches change. –
Search data is the largest consumer marketing panel available for the 2.5 billion Internet users and their more than 1 billion daily Google searches. Active users search roughly 25 times per day with 15% of those searches being new; meaning, that while posing questions is routine, the topics and phrasing are unique.
What’s even better is there is transparency; meaning, you can see how consumers or querents phrase questions. Your best guess at what they were looking for makes the SEO quest a bit more like a game of Jeopardy that augments your understanding of your potential customers. Such a vast array of consumer data gives marketers a special opportunity to explore patterns by place, time, and even more minute details.
This brings up one differentiation worth mentioning. There is search advertising and search behavior. To be a successful digital marketing powerhouse, you must master both of these.
Studying search patterns involves asking questions
You want to use search patterns to understand what, where, and how about consumers and their cultural trends happen.
Here are a few examples of how you can apply this thinking to your business:
Practically speaking, let’s say people get more annoyed with their phone contracts on the first and 15th of the month. You might see a huge spike in questions where consumers are obviously desperate to get away from their contracts. That means if you are a telecommunications or mobile carrier, you would increase your advertising and media spending at those particular peak times. You will be sure to get their attention, and hopefully they will find your deals worth buying.
Another example is the search for “dinner recipes” makes a huge uptick on Sundays in the United States, but drops drastically on Friday and Saturday. Making a smart digital marketing move to take advantage of this search engine information, you would make SEO optimized advertising so that your target audience finds you and your boxed meals on Sundays.
Discovering What Topics Are Relevant To You
You are all set, right? Your market is the New York Metropolitan area, with special ad spend earmarked for New York City’s 5 boroughs. You set all your media for Sunday, right? Wrong.
This is where it is important to drill down a little bit more on the general United States data that suggest Americans all are cooking home only on Sunday, or set to go grocery shopping then at least. If you were to check when New Yorkers are searching for “dinner recipes” you would find more variation among the 7 million people included among that search pattern. Absent are those tell-tale weekend spikes for NYC proper.
That’s right, sending that ‘cooking at home’ message to New Yorkers vs. the general population should probably differ. Rather than center your sites on targeting weekend cooking in New York City, instead re-focus on preparing easy weekday fare in the city.
Cast The Net Wider
Now imagine pulling back to cast the view on the U.S. as a whole from 2006- 2013, it is apparent that generally speaking cooking at home picked up speed. It’s probably related to wanting to know what’s in their food, and a reaction to tougher economic times. The post-2008 financial breakdown period showed an accelerating interest into the area of home cooking.
If you were trying to reach that crowd you would find out the different keywords and long tail keywords the population were using to define what they wanted to cook. Were they looking for cheap and healthy? Or was it more about growing foods you can cook the most meals with (an example of a long-tail keyword search)?
Paying attention to searches is great, but understanding how to make an actionable digital marketing plan using SEO centered messaging works. These days it is more than just writing up a blog with a bunch of happy words that appear in the search engines. With such active social media communities and rampant video sharing, particularly pointing back to Youtube and Vimeo, it makes sense to take a closer look at how you budget your marketing dollars.
Use specifics of searches to inform marketing budgets and how to allocate spending money.
You want to align with categories that are making their mark, such as at-home cooking. Then put the creative hat on and determine how to reach different regions and cities of the nation.
A different sense of humor works for New York City than upstate New York, for instance. And, the two areas probably have vastly different eating habits. Be adaptable and be ready to augment and change up digital media plans to align with changing search patterns.
Extrapolate how we reached the cooking audience to other industries, including auto, food and beverages, retail, and packaged goods.
Finger On The Pulse
The search data is instantaneously available, which is great for watching when there are changes in trending currents. Compare this to market data collected from focus groups, and you see significantly less wait time to get search data, daily.
What is really great these days is that once you start gathering a following, it grows from there. For instance, rather than having to continue spending thousands on the Sundays to keep garnering new customers to find your food in a box product, you just have a Youtube channel. You might update it and all your social media sites on Sunday, and then again on Wednesday for the urban New York City crowd.
That also happens to save time because you will not have to re-visit all of your previous postings online to update keywords to try to re-direct searchers to your pages. However, spending the money is a good investment to build customers on key days still.
Numbers That Do Not Lie
Another great aspect of relying upon Internet searches is the veracity of the data. People search without worrying about how it looks. Whereas, on Facebook or Twitter they might be concerned with how they look to other people. Additionally, just because the #1 fan on Youtube requests a chicken liver dish does not mean you would go out a produce chicken livers in a box.
It might be an outlier because often comments on social media are very positive or very negative and do not represent most other people’s thoughts.
Searching is honest and authentic – and that is what makes search data so insightful. People do not need to hold back or exaggerate when searching for answers. Perhaps the most truthful communication is found in a Google Search Box.
There is value to every area you can collect consumer data. However, digital media is often consumed online these days, and that is where you will want to focus your digital marketing. For that reason, it is ideal to find out what searches people are using. Find out what region they live in if it is a trend whether cultural or an outlier.
However, beware of taking the social media opinions too seriously, because they may be outliers whose opinions are overly negative or positive. To get the real searcher opinion, watch how they search without an audience on social media, where it is about keeping up appearances. The true intentions emerge in a search. Searchers are candid, uncensored, and direct.
Use the power of analytics to determine what search terms people are using so that you know how to reach your audience. Keep your keywords fresh to make sure you are keeping up with trends and changes in Google searches people are making.
Digital Marketing And SEO Breakthroughs
The back to basics marketing and consumer information provided by focus groups and third-party research firms is still premium and valuable. Though, anonymized search data combined with a cultural consumer picture from the focus groups augments the value. In particular it informs how to reach consumers in its now native habitat of the Internet. Utilizing search data, we can see the scale, authenticity, and immediacy to better reach the audience of consumers we intend in a timely and adaptable way.