My new boss is now officially as jaded as the lawyer I used to be. . . . On my way out yesterday, I poked my head in his office and asked him to look over an article I’d posted on eZine.com for a client, to see if I’d gotten the right mix of keywords – not too many, not too few – in the article’s content. He opened the article and looked up at me with “You’ve got to be kidding me!” written all over him. “To be honest,” he said, “I look at this and all I see is blah, blah, blah . . . link!” “Wow,” jaded, I thought. The article, its content and length was more than he was used to seeing in SEO land, apparently.
And that seems to be the critical balance in SEO copywriting. Yes, we all want to get content up there on the web that has the all-important incoming link to our site, but how to best achieve this while getting the double-boost of attracting readers to the site, blog or social media space you are writing for? After all, in the short-term link building gets the page ranking boost you and/or your clients are looking for – but it’s short-lived. I think my bosses and I agree, and we wouldn’t be the only ones in the industry, that social media marketing – MySpace, Facebook, del.icio.us, dig etc. – is the next wave to ride. But how best to ride it and turn it into a strategy that pays for itself and for our clients? After all, almost by definition users on social media sites – perhaps with the exception of the SEO-types I now rub shoulders with, but I know( or at least hope), that they too tap into what is out there on the internet for fun and frolic) – do not want to be bothered with in your face, blatant marketing content. What’s a poor hack to do?
I think the answer must lie with almost the very first thing I heard about SEO when I first interviewed for this gig. “Content is King!” With Google still trying to figure out how to monetize its social marketing phenomenon – YouTube, all of us seem to be focusing on how we can utilize social marketing media to boost the page ranking on the search engines. What we seem to forget, as I see it as an admitted SEO newbie, is that the blogs like this that we publish are already social media. Readers come to them not only for the information that they want, but to be informed by it. That’s communication, an inherent social medium.
As I write articles for the directories, content for web pages and blog blurbs like this one, I try to keep in mind that their is an end user out there who will, I hope (Are you out there?) read what it is I am writing and feel motivated to take some action as a result . . . post a comment, link to the site, return to see what is new in a week or two’s time, link to my client’s site. That is how the internet grew, and I feel that all of us in SEO should bear that in mind while we’re trying to make a buck or two for ourselves and our clients.
Google faces a great challenge in figuring out how to turn a buck, or bigger buck, on YouTube. Google CEO, Eric Schmidt was candid about that during his recent interview on CNBC. Ultimately, however, if you want to put readers eyes in front of the advertising, products or services you are marketing on line, whether for clients or through affiliate marketing, you’d best be assuring that the product that is going to capture their eye is also going to capture their imagination. Down in the caverns of Google Labs and Google Research, I’m sure they have this uppermost in mind. Good thing they have the cash to back up the imaginative ways they will undoubtedly come up with for marketing their products, ads and services through YouTube, which is becoming greater asset for them every day, if they can only figure out how to capitalize on its social marketing potential. I for one will be keeping an eye on how that plays out how to do the same on a smaller scale in the social marketing milieu the rest of us small fry swim in.