You create content for various reasons: to build awareness, gain thought leadership, demonstrate expertise, and convert Web visitors into leads and then into customers. Since you’re spending time on content creation, be sure it is optimized for search to make it super easy for potential customers to find you.
Here’s what to do:
1. Conduct a search
Even though you are 99 percent sure your target market uses specific keywords and phrases, double-check. You might find additional ones you hadn’t thought of.
2. Integrate keywords
Don’t just add the keywords to the body of the content; add them to titles (early in the title is better) and use them in links back to landing or other Web pages instead of “read more.”
3. Optimize images
Because search engines cannot read text embedded on an image, use keywords in the file names and alt text, tag them (like you would for a blog post), and include a description or caption when you can. This is true for images in any digital content – blog posts, white papers, ebooks and downloadable marketing collateral.
4. Optimize video
This is pretty much the same as optimizing images. Use a keyword-rich title and add tags, but when it comes to the description, focus less on keywords and more on a compelling message that will convince people to watch your video. Add a link to your website at the end.
5. Add to executive summaries
When you publish long-form content like ebooks, white papers and how-to guides, write an executive summary, add keywords and use it to publicize your content on your website, in press releases and newsletters, in blog posts, etc.
6. Use on Web pages
Add those keywords and phrases to page titles and URLs where the content is housed, whether it’s a landing page or service or product page.
7. Optimize for social
Look up hashtags on Twitter and keywords on Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn and any other social sites you use to ensure your content will be easily found once you share it there.
As you optimize your content, just be sure you don’t go crazy and overstuff with keywords. Search engines don’t like that.
Image by Flickr user mRio (Creative Commons)