Search Engine Marketing As Part Of Your Overall Business Strategy
Did he want search engine marketing or search engine optimization? I remember it like it was yesterday. I knew search engine optimization and had some success with it. But I had not had experience with search engine marketing. The potential client kept talking about search engine marketing. Both have a place in your overall marketing strategy, so we'll discuss each in this post.
First of all I was a new, agency owner, excited about a meeting with a potential client. But, I did not know what he wanted to talk about before the meeting so I had already made my first mistake. Always make sure they have an apparent reason before you meet with a potential customer. This is a higher-level reason for wanting to meet with you. As you ask him questions you will find the deeper, emotional, reasons for why he really wants to meet with you.
But, we are getting ahead of the purpose for this post, which is to explain how important search engine marketing and search engine optimization skills are for your business. We are also continuing our series, as this is the second post in our 12 part series on social bookmarking sites lists. All of them will set you far ahead of your competition when you use them consistently with your content marketing.
Search Engine Marketing Strategies and Tactics
Most of all this post will serve as a review of many search engine marketing strategies and tactics. Individual tactics will be used to develop an overall strategy in your business. Since the content is from top posts in search engine marketing, you can bookmark this post for future reference. In addition, I will add additional sources of information for you to do your own research. Later on in this post you will find an infographic which has links to the main sites used as reference.
I will also add where appropriate, some of my my experience online and from experiences of my mentors in business. I've been in business since 1993. They've been in business much longer so you will get decades of information in this post.
My Potential Client Wanted Search Engine Marketing and Not Search Engine Optimization
First of all, I did not know anything about search engine marketing. Also I suspect neither did he. Sometimes your prospects don't know what they don't know. It is then that they are searching for free consulting. You can give huge value, yet not fall into that trap(more on that later.)
And I would have closed my deal with a very big client, if I had understood search engine marketing. Since I did not know what he was talking about, he did not make a decision to buy from me that day, in 2008, just before The Great Recession started.
If I Could Turn Back The Hands Of Time
If I knew then what is in this post below, I could have helped this prospective client. Rather, the opposite was true because of my lack of knowledge and skill in search engine marketing. As a result he stayed with the large, over-sized agency:
- that used associates, fresh out of college
- they couldn’t use the English language well(his words not mine)
- their fees were too high because a common salary of an associate in 2008 when this story happened – $150,000 per year
- These associates did not understand his business model. This cost him more billable hours to explain his business.
Consequently, I had time to embark on an adventure I will be on for the rest of my life, to gain new online skills and to get better at writing while the economy recovered. I did the research needed to change my skill sets online and you can too by reading and using what you find in this post. Hopefully, you will be able to help more clients with search engine marketing.
The Benefits of Both Strategies
Search engine optimization and search engine marketing have similarities and differences. They work together in the best-world of blogging or content marketing for your business. They can help you:
- reduce costs
- save time
- increase your profits for your business
- brand yourself
- Increase awareness of your brand
- Ultimately sell your products and/or services
The majority of this post will cover search engine marketing. But, because the two tactics go together in a good strategy, we'll cover both at times. We looked at the top ten, page-one-ranked posts on search engine marketing.
He Felt Like He Was Hustled By The Owner
Ever had that happen to you as a business owner? Have you ever felt robbed by consultants and agencies in the past? He felt like he bought “a load of goods” from the agency owner. And, it is these kinds of practices that give the “agency industry” a bad name. Of course, no one mentioned in this post would ever run their business this way.
But, it does happen more than it should. Because he did not understand the marketing terms he was using, he was placed is a less than favorable position. Thus once he signed the contracts, the junior associates took over all the duties of the contract for the owner. As a result the owner was not around to solve problems like he promised. So he ended up spending more time explaining things to the agency junior, executives that did not know his business model. This cost his company overtime and extra expenses.
Possibly This Could Be Happening To You Currently?
You may be experiencing the same situation in your business, when developing your content marketing strategy. Sometimes it seems like big agencies use your time and money, especially when we are talking about working with small(under 4 million in revenue) to mid-sized(10 million in revenue and up) companies. Has this ever happened to you? Have you ever considered doing your own search engine marketing and optimization because of experiences like the one above?
Can You Do It Yourself?
So my questions to you is this; what do you need in your content marketing strategy? Do you need search engine marketing? Or, would search engine optimization be better for your business? Probably it is a combination of both. They both have their place in a good, content marketing strategy. You want sales on autopilot, right? So did the person in the story above.
This Will Take As Long As It Takes
Read everything you can on these two topics. Also, stay current as both topics are changing as rapidly as new technology can move in 2016 when this post was written. In no particular order, these are the posts I chose to review. Click the image below and you will be taken to a page where each icon on the page has a live link to a specific article. After reading these posts and the accompanying post links in each article, you will have enough information to make a decision for your business about whether to use search engine marketing.
#1 Search Engine Marketing or S.E.M.
Webopedia.com writes an article that may seem obvious to some. Since many beginners do not know what S.E.M stands for, we have started with the basics.
S.E.M. – stands for search engine marketing.
This article has some good points to make for intermediate and advanced marketers as well, and it covers some of the main topics you will need to understand how search engines work while getting your posts organic and paid traffic, and driving traffic ultimately to your website offers and contact information.
SEO( Search Engine Optimization)
“- Creating and publishing excellent content.
– Using keywords and keyword analysis.
– Link building to improve link popularity.
– Using social media links on sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
– Improving your site's navigation to provide an excellent user experience.”
#2 Search Engine Marketing From Search Engine Land
Searchengineland.com is the encyclopedia of search engine optimization and search engine marketing. Most noteworthy, it includes a description of the history of S.E.M and search engine optimization(SEO.) In addition, they describe a (“melding” together) of the two topics. Search engine marketing describes paid search while search engine optimization describes unpaid marketing methods, or less expensive marketing methods. Nothing is free despite what people try to tell you online. You will always have business expenses with any tactic or strategy online.
#3 Search Engine Marketing Wikipedia Explanation
Wikipedia.com does a great job of explaining the definition of search engine marketing. They also give a description of the marketplace of companies that specialize in search engine marketing. Also, they describe the history of the search engine marketing industry, which is fascinating to see how far it's come since it's inception.
Evolution Of The Search Engine Industry
Wikipedia describes the evolution of the industry as a whole. It also discusses the search engine marketing metrics used by amateurs and professionals alike. Most of all, when small business owners understand search engine marketing, it levels the playing field. Large companies no longer have such a big share of the marketplace. It puts you far ahead of the competition that is still using 1980's methods and tactics.
Especially relevant, is whether the small business owner is willing to do the work to become an expert. Search engine marketing, to become proficient, requires the small business owner put in at least 10,000 hours into learning, doing, and teaching(his or her staff) the skills required to master search engine marketing. Of course, you can always outsource your search engine marketing tasks. Fivver is a good place to start.
Other Search Engine Marketing Considerations
In addition, paid inclusion, and ethical questions about search engine optimization are discussed. Some of the biggest players and some great examples of search engine marketing are also covered in this article.
“On April 24, 2012 many started to see that Google has started to penalize companies that are buying links for the purpose of passing off the rank. The Google Update was called Penguin. Since then, there has been several different Penguin / Panda updates rolled out by Google. SEM has, however, nothing to do with link buying and focuses on organic SEO and P.P.C management. As of October 20, 2014 Google has released three official revisions of their Penguin Update.”
# 4 Search Engine Marketing Innovations Post By SEMPO.com
This post covers the strategic approach to search engine marketing. Search engine marketing attracts people searching for the information they seek to solve their problems. These people(your potential customers) could also be readers that subscribe to your blog or RSS feed.
Using search engines to target your best customers:
- at a time when your potential customer is ready to buy from you
- when they want to try your product or service.
The experts at SEMPO used the term “just in time marketing” This innovation along with a mix of:
5) other file formats.
will give you the best results for each post you write.
Search engines discussed included Google, Yahoo and Bing. But, they also include:
1) commerce sites such as eBay and Amazon
2) specialty search engines such as YouTube and Hulu for video
3) restaurant search engines like Zomato
4) “people” search engines such as LinkedIn
5) online business directories for local results including Internet Yellow Pages sites
Examples being Yelp.com, Angie’s List, and others.
Voice and Mobile Search Engine Marketing Is Huge
In addition you'll find such innovations in search engine marketing as:
1) voice search – Do you use this with your phone? Ever here of Siri?
2) mobile search – People are using their mobile phones more and more to find the solutions to their problems.
The following publication on search engine marketing is not from SEMPO and I found it especially relevant to mobile-search and search engine marketing. Below you will find an abstract and references to a current article on this subject. This is a more academic approach to research conducted in search engine marketing from
International Journal Of Business Information Systems
“Inderscience Publishers. Well worth your time to get current information on this topic.
“Journal: Int. J. of Business Information Systems, 2016 Vol.22, No.2, pp.181 – 210
Author: Alan D. Smith, Robert Morris University.
Search engine technologies with a social media context has allowed for the development of a modern, consumer-driven internet experience that has been powered by customers' imagination and is designed to at least partially satisfy users' need for self-directed engagement. The present research effort has illustrated that some components are further behind than potentially expected. This study examined millennials versus older generations as well as gender and various search engine and social metrics in order to access their effectiveness of the various media that encompass integrated technology. Millennials may slightly be prone to take advantage of such technologies, but their search and use patterns are not much varied from their older professional counterparts. Businesses are well advised to provide a mindful, less controlled, more interactive presence of potential users, especially through an increasingly mobile presence.
(Notice the keywords the scholars of this topic chose to focus on below
Keywords: consumer behavior; customer relationship management; CRM; pay-per-click; PPC; search engine marketing; search engine optimization; SEO; social media; age; gender.
Back To Our Review Of SEMPO
Most noteworthy, this article from SEMPO is a list of expert marketers from around the industry that are responsible for sculpting search engine marketing as we know it today.
SEMPO Board of Directors
- Chris Boggs, CEO/Founder, Web Traffic Advisors, LLC
- Michael Bonfils, Intl Managing Director, SEM International
- Mike Corak, VP/GM, DAC Group
- Marc Engelsman, Director, Strategy & Analytics, Digital Brand Expressions
- John Gagnon, Bing Ads Evangelist, Microsoft
- Mike Grehan, CMO, ACRYONYM
- Michael Gullaksen, COO, iProspect
- Simon Heseltine, Global SEO Business Lead, Hewlett Packard Enterprise
- Krista LaRiviere, CoFounder & CEO, gShift
- Bill Leake, CEO, Apogee Results
- Corey Morris, Director of Digital Strategy, ER Marketing
- Cristie Reed, Digital Marketing Strategist, Thomson Reuters
- Francis Skipper, Partner, 451 Marketing
- Dave Tan, Director, Agency Business Development, Google
- Tony Wright, CEO/Founder, WrightIMC
- Michael Yang Xu, Co-President, Gridsum”
Psychological Aspects of Search Engine Marketing
They also discussed the interaction between marketers and their prospects being important in any business. Especially relevant, is the psychological nature of the interaction between the two. This is a business area that my mentors and I have experience with in the field.
The amazing part is that the prospect initiates the interaction with your content when using search engine marketing. Consequently, the most amazing, repeatable pattern of behaviors start to happen as they make a decision. See more in this video below. It also is not from the SEMPO site, but it will help us understand the psychological nature of a buying decision that is brought about by search engine marketing and search engine optimization.
(Video of concept of the Buying Decision Model by J.P. Guilford while at UCLA) Thank You to Dan Kreutzer and Robert Lambert( two of my many mentors from The Samurai Business Group) for giving me permission to share the concepts with you. If you specialize in complex sales in a corporate setting, you should look them up. Tell them I sent you. They turn the superstar sales person into legends and have done it globally.
You Need Search Engine Optimization Too
On Page Architecture
Search engine optimization, and on-page architecture are important to any article. Most noteworthy are the changes in algorithms such as Penguin, Panda and “other furry and feathered creatures” that Google has unleashed on the blogosphere. They did this to combat the real problem of people manipulating their post’s page results.
The following SEO criteria are just a small part of what you'll learn from the people at Yoast.com Funny story…I met the owners of Yoast when they were just at the launching stage of their business. The owner is a great guy. He was part of the LeTip group I was in, when my business was in Chicago.
These are some of the key things you want to make sure your content has. It is n0t the full list. For SEO the folks at Yoast.com are the experts. And they have a great plugin that makes writing your content easier, especially if you do not consider yourself a great writer.
Some Key Items To Have For Your SEO Post
Here is a partial list of characteristics you should have in our writing content that has a good SEO score:
- The meta description contains the focus keyword.
- The images on this page contain alt attributes with the focus keyword.
- keyword density is 1.8%, which is great
- focus keyword appears in the first paragraph of the copy.
Also you can use more SEO criteria that you can find in the Yoast plugin. Use Yoast in your content marketing, you will be glad you did. I sure was. It made the job of writing fun! Especially, if you struggle with writing.
#5 Search Engine Marketing No Other Media Can Do This
Wordstream.com takes a different approach and focuses on Pay-Per Click advertising(P.P.C)search engine marketing. Also, these ads often known as pay-per-click ads, come in a variety of formats:
ad size video
2) text-based ads
3) product listing ads(PLAs also known as Shopping ads)
Google Is A Great Resource For The Small Business Owner
Another great resource is Google. They have some great information about ad sizes used online in search engine marketing
While the image above is a screen capture from an Adsense page you will get a good idea of what the standard sizes of ads to use in your search engine marketing campaigns. Many new people online start with Adsense campaigns.
These ad formats above are more visual, product-based advertisements. They allow consumers to see important information at-a-glance, such as price and reviews of products. So it makes the buying experience easier for all involved.
Your Ads In Front Of Motivated People Ready To Buy From You
Search engine marketing puts your ads in front of motivated customers. As a result they find your article when they are ready to buy from you. Not is a day or two but right now. I can not stress this enough. Search engine marketing places people ready to buy from you at the “front door” of your business online. Most noteworthy is why search engine marketing is so effective; it is a powerful way to grow your business 365 days a year 24 hours a day 7 days a week. It requires no sales people. Search Engine Marketing works like little “sales robots.”
Setting Up Pay-Per Click Campaigns Is Part Of Search Engine Marketing
Wordstream.com also does a thorough discussion of setting up a pay-per-click campaigns. And they include how to bid for keywords and set up campaigns. They also discuss the economics involved in setting up a pay-per-click advertising campaigns. This of course should include a retargeting component to any pay-per-click campaign. Retargeting places your ad in front of the same people on future sites they visit. Many times a consumer needs to see your ad at least 6 times before they make a decision to take action. We may cover that topic in another post in this series.
#6 Search Engine Marketing For The CMO
Scott Rayden wrote an excellent post from the perspective of a CMO. He discusses seven main topics that the busy CMO can scan. This blog post is a good read while flying to your next country, or while stuck in the airport lounges of the World. The seven considerations for search engine marketing being more than a conversion channel are:
“1) today’s funnel is longer and more complex
2) not all funnels are equal today
3) remarketing pays off at almost every level of the marketing funnel
4) online and offline work together better than ever
5) SEM is your ultimate testing sandbox
6) you do not have to spend thousands on attribution
7) S.E.M can help branding…sort of”
The Three Areas That Will Be Impacted
CMO's can use search engine marketing as part of the total strategy. This includes:
Also considered are mobile and/or desktop S.E.M. The two can be interwoven, which is the “art” of marketing and advertising. You measure “the science” of this art. As a result this is where “the magic” appears to happen.
Sales Funnels are Getting Longer
Customers interact with longer sales funnels. They were short sales funnels in the Web 2.0 era. That time and technology is old and not used in 2016.
Funnels today include:
1) offline channels
2) online channels from areas of awareness, and branding to conversions and distribution.
Don't forget Evaluation of Your Campaign
Evaluation by the customer is part of your business strategy or it should be. In the eyes of the young, inexperienced, sales person the sale is over once the customer pays. But, to the experienced business owner you know that the customer must see that you over-deliver on your promises to solve their problem, and you can include retargeting in your evaluation process as well. Use the results to be held accountable to the Board. This is marketing on steroids!
#7 Search Engine Marketing Trends For The Rest of 2016
What search engine marketing trends should you expect in the future? Search Engine Watch has written a great post telling you what to expect for the rest 2o16.
The advertising industry is becoming more competitive each year. So what is the good news? Many online advertisers are now using search engines marketing to supplement their organic search results. It is a way to stand out from the crowd. Due to search engine marketers and search engine advertisers building better campaigns, their consumers are clicking on their ads more often. The 30,000 ft. views looks like this:
- Mobile advertising is a must. Don’t use it and S.E.M and your competitors will. Period.
- Here comes voice recognition search(I use it all the time on my phone)
- Product Listing Ads will gain strength over text. Can you say Google Shopping?
- The power to target audiences v.s. just keywords.
Campaign automation will allow marketers and advertisers to focus on campaign strategy and objectives. Therefore, this will reduce your overtime expenses.
#8 Search Engine Marketing Tutorial Post By Moz.com
Moz.com is a complete online e-learning course on search engine marketing. Most noteworthy:
- How search engines operate
- How people interact with search engines
- Why search engine marketing is necessary
- The business of search engine design and development
- Keyword research
- How usability, experience, and content affect rankings
- Search engine marketing growing popularity and links
- Search engine tools and services
- Myths and misconceptions about search engines
- Measuring and tracking your search engine marketing success
#9 Search Engine Marketing vs Social Media Marketing
Kissmetrics put together an extensive search engine marketing tutorial. It also covers the difference between search engine marketing and social media. Search engine marketing can aid social media and the opposite is true. And search engine marketing can aid social media by using keywords in a bio. Social media can aid search engine results by encouraging more interaction with people.
Solutions To People's Problems
Most of all these interactions tell the search engines what they like, comment and share. In addition that content is relevant to the search inquiry. These people are searching for a solution to their problem. It is always a problem. If it were not, people would have no need to be your customer. This is their apparent reason which is what I forgot to get in the story at the beginning of this post.
Why? So that you always have a psychological understanding of your prospective customer before you talk to them, they must have:
- a pain they can not solve on their own
- fear that they will be in pain on a particular topic
- an impending event in their business or life that they need to get ready for
- outcomes or goals they can not figure out how to reach on their own
If they do not have one of the above reasons apparent reasons for searching or using social media they will not use either. Think about how you use social media and search engines. Isn’t it true that you use them for the reasons above? These reasons have underlying causes and personal consequenses whicj lead you to compelling reasons. These compelling reasons must be greater than the “pain of change.”
The Pain of Change
People tend to take action when their compelling reason for making the change is greater than the pain they will experience making the change. People are unsure of and hate change in many circumstances in mainstream society. It is always one of the four apparent reasons above. If it is not beware. They probably are trying to get unpaid consulting, or they just do not need your help. Dan Kreutzer and Robert Lambert of The Samurai Business Group taught me this and anything you read here(with their permission) about complex sales decisions and the sales psychology behind it.
#10 Search Engine Marketing Salaries
In doing the research for this blog post, I ran into the salaries you can expect to pay to bring on expert staff for your search engine marketing campaigns. People that understand search engine marketing earn between $30,000 and $80,000 per year.* This is a rough estimate. More detail below.
Payscale.com covers the range of salaries.
- Account Manager in an Agency – $41K to $69K
- Marketing Manager – $50K to $80K
- Digital Media Specialist – $35K to $53Ka
- Strategist – $47K to $77K
- Analyst – $43K to $63K
- Associate – $35K to $50K
- Coordinator – $35K to $47K
- Manager – $48K to $80K
- Specialist – $38K to $56K
*You may pay more depending on the results history of the people you hire and your location.
#11 Search Engine Marketing As An Entrepreneur
Or, you can be an online entrepreneur and then there is no limit to what you can make each month or year. This will also work if you are an offline business, sending people to your phone number. Since it takes a special kind of person you need to be the kind of individual that learns by doing.
Also, learn by your mistakes because “failing forward” works too, but you must learn to get back up more times than you fail. When you have figured out how to provide about 10Xs the value to the price paid, then you succeed. Also you will spend at least 10,000 hours learning search engine marketing. Once you do, you will “scale up” to monetize. Consistent action is your key to your success and it will put you far above your competition.
Search Engine Algorithms Change All The Time
Search engine marketing analogs change all the time so you must stay current. Because if you do not your competition will. And you must have a positive mindset in business. There is plenty of money in the Universe for the people that learn this valuable skill. Use it to produce the incomes talked about below.
Most noteworthy, entrepreneurs in this industry have made up to $200,000,000 due to using search engine marketing and search engine optimization in the network marketing and affiliate marketing industries. Entrepreneurs are people who are willing to:
“live like others won’t for as long as it takes so that they can live like others in society never will be able to.”
Your results will vary and be your own. You may possibly need new skill sets you can learn, good market conditions, leadership abilities, and using the right strategy at the right time. You are reading this at the right time. With the right people on your team you will be successful. Yet, there are no guarantees in any business. But, search engine marketing gives you the advantage over your competition in any business.
Bonus: 30 Social Bookmarking Sites List To Test
Bonus Tip For Reading This Far. Most people quit a long time ago. Below are 30 social bookmarking sites to test syndication(sharing of) your posts each month. This post is part of our 12 post series on the parts of a great social bookmarking sites list strategy. These sites were active before posting.
popscreen.com (Video Focus)
healthbubble.com ( Credentialed Health Professionals only)
upnews.it (From your WordPress blog platform)
www. jjdigg.com (international with translating links)
www.boer.co.il (In Hebrew)
In conclusion search engine marketing mainly encompasses pay-per-click advertising. While search engine optimization is more focused on-page architecture, unpaid tactics and methods for gaining best page rank in the search engine pages. Also it will allow you to increase traffic to your webpages and posts.
Most of all, stay current on these topics and it will pay you dividends for the rest of your life. As a result your competitors will wonder why you are doing so much better than they are, in terms of revenue and profit.
They did not take the time and effort to learn how to leverage search engine optimization and search engine marketing to:
- reduce costs
- save time
- increase your profits for their business
- brand themselves
- increase awareness of their brand
- ultimately sell their products and/or services
Most noteworthy, you will be glad your business did and it will place you years ahead of the competition. Furthermore your ability to earn will be greatly enhanced. And once you become an expert at search engine marketing and search engine optimization, you will see an increase in the traffic to your overall business.
Finally, if you'd like to learn more about these topics and see what strategies and tactics we use online to build our business, click any of the banners on this page. Thank You for your time.