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Search engine optimization begins and ends with quality content writing. That makes SEO a central element for social media marketing and social media optimization. 

“By leveraging SEO data and making it a key factor in content marketing strategies, websites will see an increase in keyword rankings and appearance on search engine results pages,” said Tanaka Chaza, a digital marketing and content manager at #ChatAboutFarming.

He has to understand and master the entire alphabet of SEO, SMM and SMO to harvest the best results for his community as online search engines discover its content.

During an Africa Tweet Chat, Chaza talked about the role of SEO in content and digital marketing.

He noted that if you’re not meeting your visitors’ needs, it doesn’t matter how optimized your site is. Every time you write a great piece of optimized content, always think about what a user will type in the search space. 

“Good SEO starts with the ability to implement it,” Chaza said. “You can have the best content and technical optimization, but if it takes you one year to roll out changes, the battle is lost. Effective SEO requires a commitment, not a campaign.”

SEO embodies the key words and phrases that attract search engines to your content. They work best when they flow naturally into the earliest part of your post and are then amplified throughout. 

“This is the technical process of increasing the quality of traffic and attracting maximum visitors to your website,” Chaza said, listing SEO’s advantages:

  • Makes the web page easy to find
  • Easy to crawl
  • Easy to categorize

Words Are the Key

Search engine optimization elements include the headline and content summary. Those are the keys that the searchers first latch onto. Other considerations are sites that link to your content. 

Chaza focuses on keywords:

  • They must be well-researched, carefully chosen and judiciously used in your content to be effective.
  • These are phrases that prospects use to find online content.
  • They can be used to connect with prospects looking for their products and services.

“Content is a vital part of SEO because it’s the vehicle you use to reach and engage audiences,” Chaza said. “Content must be educational but also interesting, relevant, engaging and shareable. Content comes in a variety of forms, including web page content, videos and blogs.”

He makes a distinction between off-page and local optimization.

“Off-page SEO involves external optimization practices that happen away from your site rather than on it,” Chaza said. “The main technique used for off-page SEO is backlink building. Quality backlinks to your site from external sites tell search engines that your site is valuable.

“Local SEO best practices include claiming directory listings, creating location-specific pages for your site and creating pages for your business,” he said. “Those would be on Google My Business, Google-Plus and Google Maps.”

Well-written SEO brings the search engines to you, which lessens the effort you have to put into promoting your content. 

Someone They Can Trust

“SEO is a valuable tool for brand awareness, building relationships with prospects and positioning yourself as an authoritative and trustworthy expert in your field,” Chaza said, citing these benefits:

  • Acts as an effective marketing strategy with the main focus to increase the business reach to the target customers
  • Makes your web page accessible to your target customers
  • Improves user experience by optimizing website content

Keywords are the hook for search engines, which cast about for content that fits users’ needs. 

“Those words are ideas and topics that define what your content is about,” Chaza said. “In terms of SEO, they’re the words and phrases that searchers enter into search engines, also called ‘search queries.’

“Keywords are relevant because they are the linchpin between what people are searching for and the content you provide to fill that need,” he said. “They are as much about your audience as they are about your content because you might describe what you offer in a slightly different way than some people ask for it.”

In addition, search engine “crawling” mystifies people.

“Crawling is the first step by Google’s robot to find out what pages exist on the web,” Chaza said.

Content will flounder unless you give it the best chance to attract the attention of search engines. SEO in effect makes you more productive because less effort produces better results. 

“Content marketing is about providing value to your audience,” Chaza said. “SEO is about helping the search engine algorithms determine the value of your content. SEO ensures your site is as optimized as possible.”

Valuable Online Real Estate

In this Digital Age, online is where the business is. Without an online presence, companies squander a growing portion of their potential customers. 

“Being online as well as being consistent in content and digital marketing will make people aware of your presence,” Chaza said. 

“A strong online presence allows you to build your brand and gain the credibility that you need to attract more customers,” he said. “Along with making your business readily accessible, an online presence also gives your customers an easy way to find out more about what you have to offer.”

That knowledge pays back several ways:

  • Helps you build an audience.
  • Connect with your customers.
  • Keep people updated on your day-to-day activities, as well as hours of operation.

“If you’re not online, how else can your customers know when you’re open or what products or services you provide?” Chaza said. “By them searching you online, they become your organic leads in business.”

If you’re smart enough to have a content and digital marketing strategy, you know why you need SEO. It’s the technical way to make your human-built content attractive to robotic searchers. 

“In a fast-paced world, consumers are looking for information they want now,” Chaza said. “They don’t want a sales spiel. They want relevant information that informs and assists.”

Meeting SEO’s Demands

In his view, this is why search engine optimization is a key part of digital marketing:

  • SEO makes demands, which content and digital marketing fulfill.
  • It improves the reach and impact of your digital marketing.
  • SEO demands consistent output while content marketing requires the consistent output of content.

Chaza regularly uses these SEO tools to save himself from tedious keyword research and data analysis:

  • Google Search Console
  • Ahrefs, an SEO keyword tool
  • SEMRush for marketing SEO tools
  • Answer The Public for free SEO tools
  • Copy.ai, another SEO keyword tool

Putting them all together will lead to easy crawling and welcome results.

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Jim Katzaman
Jim Katzaman is a manager at Largo Financial Services. A writer by trade, he graduated from Lebanon Valley College, Pennsylvania, with a Bachelor of Arts in English. He enlisted in the Air Force and served for 25 years in public affairs – better known in the civilian world as public relations. He also earned an Associate’s Degree in Applied Science in Public Affairs. Since retiring, he has been a consultant and in the federal General Service as a public affairs specialist. He also acquired life and health insurance licenses, which resulted in his present affiliation with Largo Financial Services. In addition to expertise in financial affairs, he gathers the majority of his story content from Twitter chats. This has led him to publish about a wide range of topics such as social media, marketing, sexual harassment, workplace trends, productivity and financial management. Medium has named him a top writer in social media.

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