Posted: Tuesday 6th October 2015 in Owned and earned media, Thought Leadership.

In 15 years as a journalist, not once did I ever worry about Search Engine Optimisation (SEO to the already initiated). In fact, I’ll be honest and admit I barely even knew what it was. When you’re working for a popular daily newspaper, content
sells itself. Or at least that’s what I thought. So, as my colleagues and I kept coming up with the stories to fill the
paper’s pages and its always-growing website, the readers just kept on coming.

Not once did I worry about keywords or SEO. Never.

Yes, we knew there were some important words and phrases which needed to go in the headline, but that was about as far as our SEO understanding went. As for Google’s keyword planner, I’d never even heard of it. I’m willing to bet it’s a similar story in newsrooms up and down the country, possibly even on Fleet Street.

But, after becoming immersed in the world of SEO at Summit, I now wish I’d known about it a long time ago. If I had, it would have helped turn stories which were seen by a few thousand people into ones which reached tens of thousands of people. Having an SEO strategy and using tools like Google Trends or Topsy can also help content creators (and journalists) to surface content that people want to consume.

Why should you invest in SEO?

First of all, let’s make something clear – good content is about much more than keywords. If it’s good, it will sell itself. People don’t share rubbish. They’re too clever and far too busy to do that. But what about all that good content you’re producing which never quite manages to reach the audience you want it to?

That’s where a structured SEO strategy becomes vital and, subsequently, so too does having the ability to measure its results. So, if your content – and products – remain hidden, SEO might be the key which helps you to unlock the reason why.

Perhaps you need to devise and develop a list of keywords, increase the frequency of your content or track which types of content are performing best. Whichever it is, our team of SEO analysts and experts can work with you to help you and your business understand what your online audience wants. By using up-to-the minute data from SEO tools like Google Trends and trends24.in, your business can create quality content which people are actively looking for and want to digest. That may be in the form of an article, video, podcast, infographic or just a simple social post to show that you’re on trend and up to date.

How to use SEO to increase your audience share

Just like all business owners, journalists are very busy people. When you chill out, they’re at work. When you’re having your Sunday dinner, they’re at work. When you sleep, they’re at work. In fact, they’re almost always at work. That’s one of the main reasons why journalists, and perhaps business owners, too, often don’t really take SEO seriously. They might have heard of it; they just haven’t got time for it. Even those who do have time for it may not truly understand the benefits of it.

One of the key aspects to grasp is the importance of the specific words you use, and how choosing one word over another can massively influence your share of the online audience.

Using our local East Yorkshire sports teams as an example, when it comes to rugby league, Google’s keyword planner tool reveals that fans are searching for ‘Hull KR’ (18,100 searches a month) far more than ‘Hull Kingston Rovers’ (3,600 searches a month).

It’s a similar story in football. The transfer window may now be closed, but Hull City fans who want to find out about their club’s latest signings were hunting for ‘Hull City transfer news’ above other related terms.

Google-Trends

In online retail, there are more and more people using Google to buy ‘sofas’ than ever before, a search volume of 135,000 a month. Unlike in the past, they’re not as keen on acquiring ‘settees’ which only has a paltry 2,900 monthly requests on Google in comparison.

Do you know what your online audience want?

If you do business online, do you know what your customers are searching for? If the answer is no, you need to find out. Fast. If you don’t, your rivals will.

This is just one example of how a greater understanding of the principals of SEO can vastly improve the popularity of your online presence. So, whether you’re a journalist who wants to find a topic to write about or a business that’s keen to breathe new life into its content strategy, SEO can definitely help you to fulfil your customer’s needs and reach a much bigger audience.

 

If you have any questions or would like to know about how we can help you make more money online contact us on (01482) 876876.


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