The search marketing industry continues to evolve. Let’s face it, SEO performance relies on a solid foundation and adapting regularly to changes in the industry. When the algorithms change to improve the overall user experience, top marketers must respond by aligning their company strategic and operational capacity. And as always, you must continue learning and prepare for the next change because it’s coming. That’s where we are with search engine optimization today. Things are in transition because the behavior of the customer is in transition as they move more of their online activity to social and search behaviors. Where the customer goes, we go.
SEO is even a misnomer now. It doesn’t optimize for search engines anymore; we optimize digital assets according to best practices. We optimize to the customer sentiments because the search engine is now only a means to the end, a conversion. SEO optimizes to the customer, people, and we do it where the customers spend their time, in social media and on the Web reading blogs and other such digital media.
SEO must continue integrating with the rest of the marketing world. The little triangular shaped space at the point of intersection below is deceivingly simple to look at. It’s a much more complex and difficult target to hit because of what that little triangular shape is composed of.
Let’s take a closer look at that little piece of marketing nirvana. There are more elements than shown in the graphic below. These are the seven big ones.
The key to success is the red circle in the middle that connects them all—strategic thought leadership and a subsequent plan focused on transcending the corporate turf owned by each element to create a functional team to reinvent SEO as a customer optimization strategy (COS) that employs industry best practices in developing killer content to engage, educate, and inform the customer along the entire marketing path. The goal is to build customer confidence, knowledge, and loyalty for your brand.
The old SEO days of running as fast as you could to keep up with Google and its algorithmic keyword and link building strategies are gone. The new SEO, customer optimization strategy (COS), takes place above the shoulders in a well thought out content campaign that incorporates the old SEO (no, it is not dead) but also recognizes the new power of the customer to express what they want in social and digital media through user-generated content (UGC).
The new foundation for COS is data and data analytics, including predictive analytics that enables predictive content publishing for superior content. As customer sentiments and perceptions shift, content and marketing messages shift to stay fresh and relevant. The customer is telling us what they want. We just have to listen (collect data), pay attention (analyze data), and give it to them (make good decisions based on the analysis). Adobe delivers the capability to achieve an effective COS in its Adobe Marketing Cloud through search, social, and content technologies via Adobe Media Optimizer, Adobe Social, and Adobe Experience Manager, respectively.
Be strategic, data-driven, integrated, and comprehensive in your approach to COS. That is the means to your future success with SEO.