Search Engine Marketing (SEM) or SEO
Now we are at the section that acts as the alternative to Facebook ads…
Search engine marketing is about getting your content displayed when internet users search online for answers to their questions and problems.
Content promoted with search engine marketing has the longest shelf-life and the greatest potential return on energy invested.
Essentially, when your content successfully ranks in the search engines, you can receive traffic your posts for years and years to come.
The major search engines that you can market through are Google (blogging), YouTube (videos), Amazon (Kindle e-books), and iTunes (podcasting).
The challenge with search engine marketing is that you must be able to withstand months of delayed gratification before seeing results. It takes months and sometimes years to build your website up as an authority in your niche.
The benefit of pushing through is that you can get traffic for LIFE!
Regardless of the core content strategy you choose, you will ultimately need a blog of your own. That is your digital ‘home’ online and it is the asset you OWN.
Your YouTube channel, your Facebook fan page, your pinterest account could all be turned off… The rug can be pulled out from under you.
So you need to ‘own the racecourse by hosting your own blog…
Your goal is publish highly relevant and valuable content using those keywords in a way that Google falls in love with.
Again, the goal here is to be of service to your audience and to help them solve the problems they are searching for answers to.
Keyword research allows you to understand the specific phrases your audience is searching for based on real data from the search engines.
When you create content that is tailored around those questions and that helps people solve their problems, the search engines begin to look at you as a content partner.
As you publish more and more great content, your website begins to gain authority in the eyes of search engines, allowing you to begin to rank in search queries featuring your target keywords.
This process, when done with enough consistency for a long enough period of time, brings you highly targeted traffic from the search engines.
In addition to Google and YouTube for traffic, publishing Kindle books on Amazon is a great way to reach a targeted audience interested in solving specific problems.
This Kindle traffic is some of our highest quality traffic, because users who purchase our books from Amazon are already customers and are more likely to continue to purchase products from us.
Podcasting is yet another way to reach millions of targeted and interested users, offering you the opportunity to be of service to an audience at scale. When podcast listeners have you in their headphones and are listening to your content, this is a very personal connection. If you’re putting out quality content via podcasting, this will help you to quickly build a positive relationship with your audience.
If you aren’t yet an expert in your chosen niche, you can focus your podcast episodes on interviewing experts who have the answers to your audience’s biggest questions.
If you are already a seasoned professional yourself with years of experience, you can create a podcast about what works and what doesn’t. Both approaches work and just take consistent effort over sustained periods of time.
There is a nearly endless potential for audience growth in podcasting with more than 3 billion smartphones and tablets all connected to the major podcast directories through iTunes, etc.
The biggest key to success with search engine marketing and content marketing is to find the medium that aligns with your DNA. If you are a writer, write. If you enjoy talking on camera, make videos.