This is a response to Eric Enge’s post
Why Is It So Hard to Increase Your Search Rankings By One Spot?
So the way to be perceived as the best is, in fact, to be the best. In today’s web world that doesn’t simply mean having the best product or service, but also the best plan for actively communicating that on the web.
Blogs and social media sites give you a way to do that in a non-commercial manner, and actively engage with communities, peers, influencers, and potential customers. These actions may not drive revenue directly, but they will help build up your brand.
I’ve found that a simple answer confuses most people, or at least a lot of people who ask me how to rank their website in Google.
To echo Eric Enge, the answer is to be the best and to be perceived as the best. The perception part is important and is something that a lot of people struggle with when building businesses on the web.
Your offering can be the best whilst it is not perceived to be the best.
Perception is crucial.
It does not matter what you think about your stuff, it matters what other people think.
“It does not matter what you say it matters what people think you say.”
I see mediocre blog posts being tweeted more than brilliant blog posts all the time. Why, because the perception is that a specific blog post must be better because it’s published on a certain blog or by a certain author. It is not always the specific blog post that triggers such shares, rather it is the perception that this blog post must be worth sharing because of other factors.
Even when it might not be worth sharing.
Conversely, if the perception of a blog or blogger is low and yet they sometimes produce gold, it is liable to not get shared. This perception could be interpreted as branding of both the author and the website or blog.
It ties into what Eric was talking about because if something is perceived as being good, then the author must have some skills in communication and Google wants to send people to websites that can communicate well.
The ability to communicate must be pervasive, not only on the website but on other websites who link to website. The communication footprint which is sent out must be of a certain quality and usefulness.
You can think of it as branding if you like, but that’s oversimplifying. How communication is done has an effect on branding, but it is not branding.
It’s how you communicate, rather than “what your content is like”, that is more important.
Your content is merely a vehicle for your communication.
Most clients who come to me do not have a communication strategy, or even a social media or content strategy. That needs to be fixed, you need all the communication output to tie together and work towards specific goals. One bit of linkbait is not going to do this.
The most useful thing I offer clients is to create a Content Marketing strategy, or if you will a communication strategy. It’s not cheap and it goes deep into the problem and it’s also not cheap to implement. But having a road map such as this save a huge amount of time and money in the long run and it also gives you the ability to get where you are going more effectively.
In conclusion, it’s important to remember that SEO is not just about Excel spreadsheets and keyword data, etc. It’s about communicating to other human beings on a mass and yet intimate level. It requires a deep level of understanding about how human beings communicate and how their behavior can be infulenced by such communication.