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Monday, January 5, 2015

(SALES) Selling Radio's Role In SEO

What makes marketing exciting is that as soon as you find a strategy that works, it quits working. Why? If you?ve created a campaign that works, your competitors quickly catch on and copy or upstage you, making your once-unique strategy commonplace.
Take the example of furniture stores. I?ll bet that some time ago a furniture store in your market promoted ?Nothing to Pay for 30 Days? and it worked! Until a competitor began promoting ?Nothing to Pay for 90 Days,? and yet another joined the fray with ?Nothing to Pay Until Next Year.?
In our advertiser seminars to position radio?s important role in the new media marketing mix, I often joke that I?m waiting for the furniture ad that says: ?Never pay. Leave the debt to your heirs.?
As an astute marketer, you know that when all of your competitors are zigging, you?ll stand out and be successful by zagging. In my book, I call the marketing tendency to follow others ?Sheep Syndrome,? and doing what everyone else does simply levels the playing field without creating a competitive advantage.
So let?s talk about the flock to digital. SEO (Search Engine Optimization), creating messages to go viral, and a long list of other online strategies worked extremely well for early business adopters because their competitors weren?t yet effective in that space.
But now virtually everyone is on that level playing field.
Andrew Herrault, lead strategist at digital marketing agency Connective Insights, says, ?SEO isn't what it used to be. SEO used to be a powerful tool. One could easily game the system. You could buy links, submit to link wheels and directory blasts, keyword stuff, and hide on-page text. You could submit to irrelevant blogs for keyword-rich anchor text, and you could syndicate your content across the Web. Those were all viable techniques during the SEO heyday.?
Today, each of those tactics is unhelpful. Yes, you can guest-blog... but only occasionally and in very specific instances. Yes, you can syndicate articles... but only with canonical tags or other methods that prove to be difficult to execute because of restrictions from the destination site. You cannot buy links, use link schemes, use directory blasts or any hidden content tactics or you will be hit by an algorithmic or manual penalty faster than you can say, "What's Google's algorithm??
But here?s the thing. Herrault further asserts, ?SEO isn't dead; it's just different. SEO has evolved as Google has evolved, and it's now more of an aggregate result of other marketing tasks than as its own standalone task.?
Our Share of Mind (SOM) research, in each market we?ve surveyed, consistently proves that radio is one of the most powerful tools among those ?other marketing tasks? that drive more Web traffic.
We?re able to prove that SOM is the best SEO strategy on the planet, and that only intrusive media like radio can create dominant SOM. Our research varies slightly from market to market, but somewhere between 76 percent and 84 percent of consumers will go to the website of a business they have heard of before they will click on the site of a business they have not heard of.
And of course the only sure way for a business to capture first-page search engine presence is when the shopper searches for a business by name, rather than searching generically for what they want to buy.
In a crowded field like tires, for example, if Bill?s Tires has created a pre-need awareness and preference for their business, motorists will be guaranteed to find Bill?s Tires website if they search for them by name. But searching for ?tire stores? generically can reveal different first-page tire stores every day as competitors in that space continue to engage in old-world SEO races to the top of the page.
Are you educating your clients, prospects, and staff about radio?s important role in creating share-of-mind and pre-need preference in a rapidly changing marketing and media landscape?
Wayne Ens is president of ENS Media Inc. He can be reached at
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