SEO or Search Engine Optimization is one of the best online marketing strategies when it comes to bringing targeted and relevant traffic to a company’s website and converting them in to leads or sales. Traditional SEO procedures include routine tasks, such as optimizing keywords, blog commenting, forum posting, directory submission, guest posting, press releases, and creating social media profiles. Although these procedures could be effective, online marketers have to learn how to implement them with the integration of other marketing strategies aside from SEO.
Integrated SEO is the new trend in search marketing. Actually, it should have been like that even before. It’s just that search engines, like Google, have not yet evolved in to a more humanly engine until recently. With Google’s algorithmic updates like Panda and Penguin, and its new engine Hummingbird, the search engine results pages (SERP) are now showing more integrated results, such as personalized search results, number of likes from Facebook pages, author snippet, number of Google+ circles, reviews and ratings from community sites, in-depth articles, maps, more sponsored ads, and other information that were not usually displayed in the past.
Therefore, if you want to ensure that your SEO will be a success, you have to learn how to combine it with other marketing strategies, techniques and tactics. The following are 12 marketing strategies that you should integrate in your SEO campaign.
1. Content marketing
Content includes everything that can be found in a website, such as articles, images, videos, internal links, outbound links, and even authors. Yes! The author we see behind an article is part of the content. That is why if you’re an author, you have to optimize yourself personally and professionally by increasing your online followers and growing your personal brand as an author and expert in your field.
To integrate content marketing in your SEO campaign, consider integrating people or experts who will help you to create a better content marketing strategy. In other words, consider hiring writers, graphic designers, video producers and other professionals who will help you in intensifying your content for the search engines and for your target audience.
2. Social media marketing
SEOs must never ignore social media. As you can observe in SERP, Google is ranking and displaying well social media pages, like Facebook Pages (including number of likes and people talking about them), YouTube videos (including date and length of video), Google+ profiles (including profile picture and number of circles), Google+ Page (including ratings, map and reviews), Foursquare (including the rating and number of votes from users), and others.
This means that getting on top of the SERP is not already sufficient nowadays. You have to do social media marketing to increase your Facebook likes, Google+ circles, review ratings and votes, and other social media metrics that will help your pages increase their CTR (click through rate) in the search results. This also means that SEOs should not just be technical but they should also become humane and behavioral, which what I will discuss in the following paragraphs.
3. Conversation marketing
In order for SEO, content marketing and social media marketing to become effective, online marketers should learn how to integrate conversation marketing into their marketing mix. Website and content should not only be made to communicate with the search engines, but they have to be created to communicate with real people. We should not only build social media pages to increase our links and exposure, but we also have to talk and interact with our social media followers.
Conversation marketing is vital in most of SEO tactics. For example, when we do blog commenting, we have to really read and talk with the bloggers in order for us to leave valuable and engaging comments. When we join forums for link building, we have to actually talk with the forum members to create useful threads. We should reach our visitors, commenters, social media followers, and target audience to make sure that we can retain them and turn them in to loyal customers. Furthermore, when we do link building or linkbaiting, we do outreach to our target linkers or influencers to increase our chance of earning relevant and quality inbound links.
Also, SEOs should not just drive traffic from the search engines or from social networking sites, but they have to convert this traffic in to leads or sales. Through conversations like creating call to action buttons or landing pages that communicate well with your visitors, your conversion rate could increase.
4. Relationship marketing
Conversations are nothing if we cannot build lasting relationships from people. Thus, we have to ensure that our audience or target market will develop trust and confidence to us. Relationship marketing must be integrated in our SEO campaign in order to make our traffic and conversions long lasting. Remember that Google’s Hummingbird is here to make Google a more human friendly search engine. Hence, we have to make efforts on building deeper relationships with our target audience or customers who are definitely humans.
Search engine optimization without thinking of building a brand is not going anywhere. Every online marketer should put branding into their SEO amalgamation. Branding involves building the right identity for your business based on what people say. Take note that your business brand is not what you say about your business but it is what people say about your business. Branding doesn’t only involve creating your brand name, logo, slogan or tagline. Branding involves being consistent with your principles and core values behind those logos, name and lines.
So how do you integrate branding into your online marketing mix? You can do it by using the right business and marketing styles. Styles leave a pattern that people and your customers can see and realized about you or your business even if you don’t see or aware of those styles. Your styles create your brand because they are what people say about you or remember about your business. So what are your styles in doing business and marketing? Are you honest? Are you a servant? Are you ethical? Are you consistent in satisfying your clients? Are you not using dirty tactics in business, marketing or even in SEO? Those are only some of the things you can ask to yourself to determine your styles.
6. Tribal marketing
We optimize websites, not only for the search engines, but also for the search engine users. But we also don’t just optimize our website or business only for diverse users. In order to achieve greater marketing success, we have to optimize our business or brand for a certain tribe, community or group of people who share the same interest, activity, and beliefs.
So how do you integrate tribal marketing into your SEO campaign? What I do is, based on my target keyword or market, I search for online communities or groups who are hardcore fans of my topic or niche using keyword research or simply using my common sense. After finding that group, I join in that group and study the attitudes, habits, beliefs and behaviors of the people in that community or tribe. With the information I got from observing the tribe, I create a high-quality content to share with the people in that tribe. Of course this will only work if we will already combine SEO, content marketing, conversation marketing, relationship marketing, social media marketing and other strategies to ensure that the tribe we are targeting will be happy with our content or products.
7. Visual marketing
A picture is worth a thousand words. That is why marketers are using rich images like infographics to attract more engagement inside and outside their websites. Visual marketing is an effective marketing strategy that you can integrate in your SEO campaign. If you are link building, creating viral infographics could be one of your best tactics to attract backlinks. It is also a great way to promote your business in image-based social networking sites, such as Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram.
8. Paid marketing
The SERPs are not only displaying organic results – they are also showing paid results or sponsored ads. If you want to maximize your search marketing results, your marketing budget should also include allocation for paid search marketing or PPC advertising. Moreover, you can also reinforce your integrated social media marketing by trying to invest in paid social advertising like Facebook Ads or LinkedIn Ads.
9. Mobile marketing
We are already in the world of mobile computing and mobile apps. That is why integrating mobile marketing in our SEO campaign is now a must considering that mobile Internet users, who are accessing the online world through their smart phones, tablets, watches and glasses, are rapidly growing. This is the reason why SEOs and Internet marketers should always consider making their websites responsive or mobile friendly to maximize their reach to their target audience. In order to add mobile marketing into your SEO mix, you may consider adding a mobile technology expert in your team, such as a web designer or a mobile app developer.
10. Word-of-mouth marketing
This is a consumer-oriented marketing strategy that focuses on giving customers a great experience so that they may become your own marketers or people who spread the good news about your business. Word-of-mouth marketing is an important ingredient to success in online marketing because it challenges businesses and marketers to produce high quality products or content that will attract loyal users or customers. Thus, if you want to ensure that your SEO will have lasting results, add this strategy in your SEO mix and start giving your audience or customers a great experience that will wow them and make them your own promoters who voluntarily and happily spread the great things about your business.
11. Public relations
In every business and in every marketing strategy, the public should always be considered. Yes, the search engines are used by the public. Besides, search results could also be coming from the public (e.g., indexed blog posts, social media comments, user ratings and reviews). Even if your business or website tops the SERP, if there are negative mentions about your business at the SERP, your ranking might just not work.
So… what do we do? What should we do is to make sure that our SEO campaign is aligned to our social responsibility. We have to ensure that the public is accepting our brand in a positive way. If you are asking for a sample of PR tactics you can integrate in your SEO campaign, you could try giving freebies, providing free services (free consultations, training and seminars), supporting a cause (it could be about the environment, national economy or about public health), and other activities to help people even though they are not part of your sales.
Data and intelligence are vital in business and marketing. Marketers have to optimize all available important information they get and would get in order to make better marketing judgments or decisions. SEO without analytics is like a strategy without a direction. Hence, another essential thing that we should integrate in our SEO campaign is analytics. We have to learn how to understand metrics, such as the reports from Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, and other sources of intelligence or reports (free or premium). This also means that we have to add another type of experts in our SEO team – they could be the analyst or the statistician who will provide us important information that we can use to make sure that our marketing campaign is heading on the right track.
So… how’s your SEO campaign going? Are you implementing Integrated SEO in your marketing campaign? If not… then why not try to integrate the 12 strategies above to make your SEO campaign more powerful?