It takes a lot of coordination to run an SEO strategy successfully. (Say that five times fast).
I’m not going to comment on the recent slam of My Blog Guest or anything else that Google has done (or not done) in the past few weeks.
What I am going to say is that we need to treat our SEO strategies like we treat our wardrobe. Unless you have a whole hell of a lot of money to throw around – don’t follow trends. Stick with a few classic pieces and throw in a pop of color in an accessory when you need a pick-me-up.
I didn’t actually think about that metaphor much, but re-reading it in the two seconds that have elapsed since I’ve typed it, I’m realizing it’s pretty perfect. A good SEO strategy is built on the classics – long term, low risk elements that are supporting, and supported by, other marketing elements be they traditional marketing or some other form of native advertising – and then have a few more surprising tactics that have a lower probability of being successful, but if they do, could be absolutely amazing. Unfortunately not everyone can be the Dollar Shave Club, but we can aspire to be, in smaller ways.
Even the colorful choices we make are not straight guesses, but should be educated guesses. That is, tactics and choices that have been researched and vetted in some way or another for their viability. For traditional marketers that means market research and focus groups. For larger online initiatives, those research elements still have their place, but for the not-million-dollar-budget clients, this can be as simple as:
- sending 10 emails to influencers in the potential audience for said tactic (tool, infographic, gif, contest, giveaway, etc), giving them a sneak peek of your thought process and asking them if it’s something they’d be interested in
- advanced search operators are your new BFF (if they aren’t already)
- Google Trends
- Google Think Insights
….and that’s all the research tactics I’m giving you. But, TL;DR – remember to think long-term and conservatively in your strategies, make sure tactics align with the client and don’t make stupid guesses.