Thursday, May 16, 2013

Beyond SEO: Real Time Marketing Fluidity

This week, the SEO community has been buzzing with Matt Cutts' announcement of upcoming algorithm changes. We pay attention because we want to prepare ourselves (and our clients) should our sites be affected. Unlike other online marketers, I don't see Google as the killer of our industry. My view is the opposite. The webspam team at Google is helping SEO.

SEOs use strategies to help websites rank well in search. It's our job to make search engines happy. That used to be all that mattered. The game has changed and now our job is to not only make search engines happy, but also consumers and website visitors. That should have always been our jobs--creating strategies and content written for websites with keywords in mind--keywords that consumers use to find what it is they're looking for. When Google's webspam got smart with their updates is when SEO went from being SEO to transitioning into online marketing--search engine marketing.

Ladies and gentlemen, I've said this before, and I'll say it again. SEO is one part of the equation. We are all marketers. That is--SEO is part of marketing efforts catered to the consumer. Our job is to juggle consumers, business goals, and search engines. Good SEOs are more than just SEOs doing keyword research and link building. They are highly skilled individuals who are understand all three.

That being said, SEO is part of an integrated effort. I've said many times that online marketing is fluid. SEO is fluid. It's not dead as some claim because the roles are being rewritten. Real time marketing--a concept that is emerging (and one that I plan to research with my doctoral research) is taking front and center. SEOs are to provide relevant content. They are having to become content marketers. SEOs also need to be Social Media strategists because Social Media creates relevancy and boosts your link visibility. You can have separate roles-- SEO, content marketing, and Social Media, or you can combine them, which I recommend. SEOs need to go beyond their once segmented roles and understand and be able to perform all aspects of the new real time marketing SEO function. In order to reach your consumers, you need to know which keywords you need to use in your content (both offsite and onsite). You need to know which audience those keywords will be used and how to craft good quality messaging.

Online marketing is fluid ladies and gentlemen. Upcoming Penguin and Panda updates just remind us that we need to change and go with the flow--follow the consumer. In order to that, Google is reminding us to provide good quality content and be transparent with our efforts (penalizing ads that pass page rank, that are also misleading). Honestly, I can talk about this all day as they say. Instead, I'll just put it all in a dissertation. We can continue this conversation if you're so inclined. Shoot me an email at or connect with me on Twitter @andreeac_t.

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