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Where Successful Inbound Marketing People Focus their Efforts
While Inbound Marketing is well within the capabilities of anyone with a minimum of computer skills (if you can use email you can use WordPress), there is a lot you’ll learn while getting your dynamic and interactive website (i.e.: blog) up and running.
I find it helpful to think of Inbound Marketing as a jigsaw puzzle with different pieces that fit together in certain ways.
Understanding how to fit them together effectively, and doing so, is what separates the successful from the less successful.
This post summarizes where successful Inbound Marketing people focus their efforts.
Your Blog is Your Central Piece of Digital Real Estate
If your business only has one “digital asset” it need to be your business blog. If you have more (and you should) your blog is the “hub” of all your digital marketing activities.
If your website exists for the sake of commerce (and if it’s a business website it does) and however that commerce is implemented: someone buys products, fills out a Contact Us form about a consulting service, or any other action within your sales funnel, you want that to occur on your website, on your blog.
So getting as much “activity” or “buzz” about your business to your blog as possible is key.
Your website/blog is where the revenue generating transactions occurs.
Modern (Inbound) Marketing is Journalism
The days when making adjustments per the technical aspects of SEO on the back end of your website was enough to increase the visibility of your website are over. Google (who does currently own search whether you accept that or not) is working hard to return search results that are “quality” which they define as “being useful”. The more useful a webpage is, the higher it’s quality.
Having said that, there are various Search Signals Google takes into account when ranking search results in a Search Engine Result Page (SERP).
There are known to be more than 220 factors.
There are however a few that are much more critical than the rest. The most critical are:
- How many articles are stories are published on your website?
- How good are they both from an SEO and human perspective?
- How often is your website updates?
- How long have you been updating your website?
What is described above as aspects of what we call “Journalism”. The writing and publishing of stories that are interesting and useful.
Like it or not, accept it or not, modern marketing is Journalism.
When you want your website to have a large and relevant audience, you need to publish:
- A lot
- Of high quality stuff
- Often and consistantly
- And keep doing it until your crowd shows up
You need to think like (or perhaps be,)a journalist.
Blog Post Titles Are Critically Important
One of the single most important aspects of the SEO quality of a blog is it’s title. Please click the link in the prior sentence for more detail.
People Don’t “Read” Online, We Scan
This blog post uses section headings intentionally. 79% of us do not “read” webpages per se, we scan them. When something we’ve scanned look interesting, we then read more. For more on this topic, select the link in the prior sentence.
Being Found Happens More Once Some Have Already Found You
This is perhaps my single favorite aspects of online marketing. Being found occurs more once you’ve been found. And being found more helps you be found more. So being found initially matters.
But how do people find you when no one has yet found you?
The answer is you “prime the pump”.
From a search perspective”being found” means:
- People link to your website
- People comment on your blog posts
- People share your blog posts
Getting People to Link to Your Website
When you’ve published a blog posts that you’re really proud of, that you think do a good job of conveying useful information, share it with people you know and ask them to link to it.
I propose this is a great test of the human aspect of quality. If you ask people to link to it and they do, it’s good. If they don’t, it’s not.
Form of Blog Post Comment Ring to Initially Obtain Blog Post Comments
Organize a “blog post comment ring” where people agree to read and comment upon each others blog posts when requested. Then create an email distribution of everyone on this list, and whenever someone publishes a post they’re especially proud of, email it to the list with a “call for comments”.
Ask People to Share Your Posts via Social Media, Especially Google Plus
This can be the same group as the blog post comment ring. There is one caveat to this that is important. I have have not personally done any experiments about what I’m going to mention next, but I know people who claim they have and they all the same story.
Sharing posts on most social media networking sites has little to no search benefit. The one exception to this rule is Google Plus. So when you setup your Social Media Sharing Ring, focus it on Google Plus.
One Critical Success Factor is Time
And this is the one success factor not under your direct control. There is a phenomenon called the Google Sandbox Effect, where it takes time for your website to appear in search rankings. The good news is websites “get out of the sandbox” eventually, so the main point here is the sooner you start publishing to your blog, the sooner you get out of the sandbox.
I once heard an old Chinese proverb that makes this point.
While the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, the second best time is now.
Learn More…SEO Needs Link Building