One Thousand Percent

Here’s a reality I find myself repeating and repeating and repeating:

SEO drives 1000% more traffic than organic social media.

​You read that right: searches in Google create 1,000% of the traffic on the internet that social media does. (Source: BrightEdge)

Sure, it’s algorithmic, just like social, but the “rules of engagement” have stayed relatively steady throughout my—ahem—long career. And yet, it’s often the last tactic people think to implement. Or they assume because their audience is on Instagram (or Facebook, or LinkedIn—the specific platform isn’t the point here), they’re not also starting with a search.

Certain marketing gurus compound this misunderstanding by pushing the “show up for your fans” narrative (which is actually an agenda-laden bit of advice because if something doesn’t work, the convenient out is always “you didn’t show up enough”).

But, if organic social reach is the first destination you focus on, you’re leaving a whole lot of opportunity on the table. You can spend a year trying to build a 15,000 person following on Facebook or Instagram, or you can bring in 15,000 views in a month to an amazing piece of thought leadership. To me, the choice is pretty obvious.

What if you could create pillars of content that real people gobbled up, that answered their questions, that inspired them to think differently?

That’s what search is all about.

Folks in “the biz” talk about search marketing like this complicated technical thing ordinary people can’t possibly understand. But it’s actually an extremely accessible way to create lasting marketing. It’s sustainable because you can keep repurposing and building on your search strategy for literal years.

You can demonstrate that you’re a subject matter expert and get in front of decision-makers over and over again. And, yes, it can become the basis of your organic (or paid) social media efforts too. (That’s what we do at SM&Co!)

I don’t know about you, but I like the odds to ever be in my favor, and that’s the kind of luck you can engineer with a thoughtful, intentional search strategy.

Here are three quick actions you can take right now to harness the power of search:

  1. Plan a problem-focused content cluster—take the number one problem your audience has and plan a series of articles that educate, inform and inspire them.
  2. Identify a core theme in your social posts and consolidate several into a single long-form piece of content that lives on your website.
  3. Spent 30 minutes doing Google searches around your area of expertise and survey what’s out there. Where are the holes? What can you improve?

Get clarity about the best next steps in your online marketing with a strategy session with Sarah.

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