Forget everything you know about SEO for a moment. Think about your customers instead. Who are they? What questions do they have? What problems do you solve?
Review your buyer personas and ask yourself how you can make their lives easier.
Review your existing content assets and determine where they fall within the buying cycle and, if they answer the questions your prospects have.
You could make a simple grid to help you keep track. Like this one.
What do you need to create? Are most of your marketing materials sales heavy and you need more educational pieces to pique interest?
Do you have lots of useful material but don’t know the best way to get it into the hands of your prospects?
The Awareness Stage (Top of Funnel)
Blogging, how to videos and guides are all useful to catch attention.
Your prospects are searching online so help them find you.
The Best SEO is Content Relevant
Think about what you know about SEO. You’re probably familiar with keyword terms. Essentially, you use software to determine popular searched for terms in your market.
SEO Keyword terms or phrases are great for building blog posts and even web pages around. This gives search engines an opportunity to find your material and show it to your prospects when they search for a solution to their problem.
Imagine you market blue widgets for mid-size businesses.
Through keyword research tools, you learn popular phrases are “Best Blue Widgets” and “How to Choose a Blue Widget” along with a few dozen others. You spend the next few weeks crafting quality blog posts with data, comparison charts and screenshots.
If your blogs are written with the best SEO practices in mind, using the keyword term in the title, early in the post and again later in the post–no keyword stuffing–make it natural, your posts can rise to the top.
That’s one aspect of targeted traffic. Invite them to continue learning about your product or service by linking your blog posts (when relevant) and to your webpages. This helps your visitors find more of your content.
Don’t forget to invite your reader to do something in your blog post. Marketers like Hubspot and Marketo usually offer a relevant ebook at the end of their posts. They offer these in exchange for an email so they can follow up with those who download it.
The Research Stage (Middle of Funnel)
This group is looking for comparisons and information to take back to their CMO or other leaders to help inform decisions. Offering comparison charts and use cases are good fodder. Ask yourself what types of materials will answer the questions your prospect has at this stage. What will move them to requesting a sales meeting? Then, produce that type of material.
Your prospect is researching solutions online. Help them find you.
Your Distribution Plan
Once you’ve planned out the types of content you have or you plan to develop, you’ll want to plan how you’ll get your material into the hands of your ideal prospects.
Target your social media sites carefully.
There’s no need to build a presence on Instagram if your customers aren’t there.
For most B2B businesses LinkedIn and Twitter are great for building awareness and bringing people back to your blog.
It All Starts with Content
Craft interesting social posts and share them with the link to the specific page where your content lives.
Depending on how much content you have you may:
- tweet out a link to a blog post
- a landing page for a case study
- a link to your comparison chart page
All on the same day. Maybe you’ll rotate through these a few times a week. It depends on your resources and your content library.
The basics of SEO are still important: Keyword-rich, benefit-focused headlines, pages focused on one keyword term or phrase, etc. Yet, great content is what gets shared and helps you move your prospect closer to a decision.
Yes, you can also drive targeted traffic with PPC and many businesses do that successfully. However, other businesses find that breaking off a chunk of that PPC budget to produce and distribute quality content will bring them more sales and a better reputation over time in the new marketing landscape.
What about you? What are your top questions about driving targeted traffic online?