If you’re still stuffing keywords into your website, chances are you aren’t seeing the results you’re looking for. This old-school SEO mentality is being left behind by many experts for a newer, more broad approach that centers around topics rather than individual keywords.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is one of the most critical marketing elements your company faces in the digital age. Yet there is no licensing process to regulate SEO consultants like there is for, say, engineers and doctors. Anyone can throw out a sign out on the front door and set up shop. So how do you find a good SEO consultant, and avoid getting scammed by shady practitioners or stuck with someone inexperienced who can’t deliver? Like anything else, it begins with a solid foundation of preparation and asking the right questions.
What is this buzzword everyone seems to be talking about "Inbound Marketing?"Also, how do you get started with it? From my perspective, as I've watched marketing evolve over the years, Inbound Marketing is today's version of pure marketing. Content, social media, SEO, and such are just the tactical execution of broader marketing strategy. The goal should always be to understand your ideal customer and the path they take to making or repeating a purchase with your company.
Often, when working with potential clients, the question comes up, "What are you going to do every month and when should I expect results?" Although I wish I could provide precise and accurate answers, marketing isn’t black and white. As a marketing professional, while I’m able to develop and execute creative campaigns tied to a broader strategy as well as offer industry benchmarks regarding results, what I don’t know is exactly how each campaign will perform.
Start on the Inside
The infamous Irish playwright, Oscar Wilde, once quipped, "Be yourself, everyone else is already taken." While I couldn't agree more, being yourself isn't easy, especially in today's world where we tend to care too much about what others think about us (probably more than they actually do!). Brand development, like character formation, truly is an inside job.
We live and work in an era in which markets change faster than anyone can process them. This is the same business environment in which people buy new and used vehicles. The CIO of CarMax Shamim Mohammad understood that. "He also has identified different facets of digital and created product teams around each of them. This has aided in helping each team think about the customer ramifications of the work they are doing, and the evolution of each of these products as circumstances evolve." He has helped the company to create a brand experience.
A business' branding strategy starts with a clear, focused vision of your company in the future. The mission and vision statements are critical signposts; they provide you with a clear road map for your business to grow and become the brand you envision. These exercises are designed to help you develop the mission statements and vision statements for your business, the critical first step in branding strategy.