The SEO Intersect
As I sit at MozCon, I’m reminded of how important SEO is to the overall digital, inbound process. Today, SEO is less of a stand-alone, highly technical activity as it was a few years ago. With the interconnectedness of most digital activities, a discipline like SEO doesn’t exist in a bubble; it exists in every part of the process. Social interactions, helpful content, site layouts and search visibility all help the bigger conversion picture. The question is “How do you manage the intersection of the disciplines?”
For everything stated above (social, search, content) you can apply the label of inbound marketing. Inbound marketing, for those that don’t know, is the art and science of drawing potential customers in rather than pushing our brand or offer out.
All of these inbound disciplines intersect with one another. For example, say you have a new, core piece of content. That content will be split into social posts, a few blog articles and a download page.
- The social posts help your audience interact and consume the content
- The blog posts are published and the subscribers are alerted via email
- The main piece of content is added to the resource library and visible to regular website visitors
The catalyst for the above content types is a great, core piece of content. The offshoots of this content have a specific purpose and appeals to different sub-sets of buyers; some are found on Twitter, others are email subscribers while others are organic searchers.
Where Does SEO Come In?
SEO comes into play in the beginning, middle and ‘end’ (I say ‘end’ because ongoing measurement, analysis and tweaking will occur). Way before the core content was produced, a planning meeting or standup was held. During that meeting the buyer persona was explored, what they care about discussed and the content planned.
We first addressed the buyer and how we could produce content they care about. The second step is to understand how that buyer would find our content or what robots care about.
- Is there a relevant #hashtag they may search for this type of resource?
- What language do our users use to find things in this category? In other words, what are the keywords or phrases buyers would likely use to find this type of resource?
- Where can we link our content so it’s easier for our potential buyers to find?
As you can see, during the planning phase we marry our buyer interests with keywords and phrases they use to fulfill those interests. This includes the on-page content and the social search methods like #hashtags. We also explore where we can link our content to extend it’s exposure.
SEO adds to the overall effectiveness of each discipline or component. By thinking about how the resource could be found online from the beginning, you reduce the stress of ‘optimizing’ later on.