Not before long, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) was a relatively new element as far as marketing was concerned. However, gradually digital marketing grew to power and marketers started vying for the 1st space under the Google search bar. The coveted number 1 position was a dream for all Internet marketers, and more and more they dedicated the time and effort to SEO, changing its role significantly. Today, SEO has occupied its own big space in the marketing mix, and nor marketing strategy is ever complete without an SEO strategy.
But, webmasters can no longer think SEO as a separate, isolated element of digital marketing, but it is further embellished with SMM (Social Media Marketing) strategies. Besides aiming at the topmost position in Google search, marketers are also focusing on spreading the business across multiple Social Media platforms. It is no longer just the SEO game, but a compact package of both SEO and SMM, that is going to be an integral part of our digital marketing plan.
As a vital element of an overall marketing mix, SEO has a variety of benefits for businesses. Few of them are –
- Driving quality traffic to your website
- Increasing your brand visibility and brand credibility
- Building a stronger inbound link profile
- Generating sales from existing customers and prospects
- Multiplying your impact with social media in a cost-effective manner
- Instilling trust among people about your company’s products and services
Let’s check out as to how you can build a productive SEO and SEM marketing strategy, integrating both in your future marketing effort.
1. Understand Your Target Audience
Just knowing the industry or the demography of your target audience isn’t going to help you to reach them. You must be acutely aware of the bigger scenario; their geographic location, age, sex, individual requirements. Knowing your target audience in-depth is the only way of integrating SEO and SEM into your marketing plan effectively.
2. Hosting onsite of a valuable, linkable resource
Onsite contents have a significant SEO benefit and lead natural backlinks to boost up the authority and organic ranking of the website. So next time, while launching a PR campaign, consider creating an exciting and interactive piece of content to accompany the campaign.
3. An SEO-friendly Blog
Your blog must be that cozy corner in your website where you can cover topics related to your business, that doesn’t have a place anywhere on your website. It should be the home for various kinds of contents and should be a resource to your customers.
So when you create your blog content, make sure you include some key phrases or keywords that your prospects are using to find you. This entails proper meta tags, meta descriptions, proper title, URL, headers, internal linkings, and so on.
This way, you not only make your blog a resource for your customers and prospects, but also you optimize it to bring results from search engines.
4. Connect with your Audience
Creating valuable content for your product or service is not marketing. Publishing good contents aimed towards your clients is more of creating an ethos, a connection with them which goes beyond business. It’s all about building a trust in your target audience about your brand and appear an expert in your field of business. The more you can create this aura about yourself and your brand, the more your audience will rely on you and will give you recurring business.
5. Evaluate and Measure
How do you measure the overall efficiency of integrating SMM into your marketing campaign? By choosing the right metrics tools. The right tools will give you the accurate insight about your audience and thus set your parameters accordingly. In the case of traditional marketing carried out by print media, or direct marketing
service, surveys, and focus groups gather the insight of a marketing campaign or an advertisement.
For digital marketing, we have the web analytics tools and services that give us far more accurate and affordable information. You get a comprehensive detail of your search engine visibility, PPC efficiency, and most crucially, the rate of conversions. Leads that come through a toll-free number, website or promotional codes are also measured.
6. The Power of “Remarketing”
And that happens to be ‘Remarketing.’ Remarketing is such a secret weapon in your arsenal that keeps you close to your target audience. Once your prospects visit your website and leave, how do you keep them reminded of your existence? Remarketing gives you this provision to stay close to your prospects and remind them of your brand and its benefits. Through engaging texts ads, banners you can keep them in the loop for up to one year. Nothing is best than this to bring the prospects back and close your sale.
7. Optimize Your Content Marketing
Creating content of your audience’s interest is not always a piece of cake. It demands a lot of analysis and understanding about the customer’s path of purchase through the sales funnel. Observe the very first interaction of a prospect with your business, and all the way of his/her turning into a paying customer. Analyze the keywords or phrases they use to do different searches at each stage of the funnel.
Once you have a command over the preference of the customer, you can then move on to create content that suits his/her taste. Whether a client is comfortable with an Infographic, or an animated Video, or a Whitepaper, or a PPT Presentation, you need to keep on supplying contents in various forms that suit the tastes of your
Try to integrate your SEO efforts with this process of identifying the different searches made, and create content based on the data you get from analyzing your customers’ search habits.
8. Coordinate SEM and SEO
SEM stands for Search Engine Marketing when a business pays to advertise to come at the top of search results. This is the kind of search where unlike organic search results, paid searches happen.
But however, SEM and SEO should be work in a tandem thus complementing each other ensuring landing pages, listserv, keyword choices, and messaging. The keywords and phrases you’re boosting with SEO should be based on the data you collect from your SEM. Synching both SEM and SEO increases the chance of more positive results.
9. SMM Avenues
When used and integrated correctly, SMM can deliver substantial benefits and have already evolved into a popular method and effective component of SEM. Because social networking sites and platforms are very effective for Online Reputation Management, SMM is now considered to be one of the most crucial elements of the digital marketing mix.
A glaring instance is of MySpace and Facebook pages being shown up in search results frequently. YouTube and Flickr providing opportunities to distribute content to a larger and more diverse audience. Through blogging and micro-blogging platforms like Twitter and Plurk also, you can reach a diverse and broad audience.
Now it is a universal truth that SEO is indeed the backbone of digital marketing. A poorly done SEO can prove a significant hindrance to the growth of business, and the same SEO done with care and effort proves to be highly beneficial for business. But now, SEO can not perform all alone and bring results to the business. SEO must be synched with SMM to bring out the optimum result and revenue in turn.
And with more and more shoppers buying online, search engine marketing services are necessary to extend a company’s reach. So long story short, your SEO efforts need to be a complete package that integrates everything from web design & development, PR campaigns, and social media. Integration of both SEO & SMM into your marketing strategy is built on knowledge, that is inculcated with trust. When your customers see that knowledge in you, they strengthen their trust upon you and your brand. And once that is accomplished, they will come back to you again and again.
So are you yet to integrate SEO and SMM in your marketing strategies? Or have you already implemented it? Got any tips you’d like to share with us? Feel free to comment below.